Government of Western Australia Official Site


$1 billion “future fund” centrepiece of WA government 2012-13 budget

Christian Porter image

Christian Porter
Treasurer; Attorney General

A $1 billion “future fund” to set Western Australia up for generations to come forms the centrepiece of the state government’s budget. The fund, to be established for future generations to benefit from the finite mineral resources of WA, is estimated to be worth $4.7 billion in 20 years’ time.

Treasurer Christian Porter said he had created his second budget under a difficult climate, where despite playing a central role in carrying the nation’s economy, WA itself was struggling to grow its own revenue to meet unprecedented infrastructure demands. The government will record a surplus of $196 million, with debt to increase from $15.16 billion this financial year to $18.54 billion in 2012-13, and $23.156 billion in 2014-15.

Mr Porter said the economy and population were growing at record rates, adding about 1000 heads each week, which was putting pressure on infrastructure at a time when the state’s revenue – which is forecast to average 6.5 per cent over four years – was not keeping up with demand. He said the WA economy was supporting the entire country, but it was a great irony that it was being punished with increased cuts to its GST funding share, expected to fall by $662 million in 2012-13.

Regardless, Mr Porter announced a record $7.6 billion infrastructure program which he said would “fundamentally rebuild Perth and regional WA.” The funding includes $3.9 billion for transport projects, including $105 million to expand the Graham Farmer Freeway tunnel and upgrade the Mitchell Freeway.

The major new infrastructure announcement was a $428 million museum, to be built at the Perth cultural precinct in Northbridge by 2019. Mr Porter said the museum was the “final piece in the puzzle” in Perth’s transformation, and together with the new arena, stadium and waterfront project would make Perth the most beautiful city in Australia.

Additional budget initiatives include:
• $167 million for the Perth Waterfront Project
• $462 million on health – including $281million on Fiona Stanley Hospital and upgrades to Royal Perth Hospital starting in 2014-15
• $341 million for the transition of Year 7s into high schools

• Payroll tax rebate for small businesses worth $128 million