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Davis - Is China to bank-roll project cost overruns via COVID borrowings?

Wednesday, 20 May 2020

 

 

Wednesday 20 May 2020

 

Is China to bank-roll project cost overruns via COVID borrowings?

In an awkward appearance at today’s Public Accounts and Estimates Committee hearing into COVID-19 response and spending, Labor’s Transport Infrastructure Minister, Jacinta Allan, failed to answer straightforward questions about the role Chinese Communist Government funding will have in funding Labor's massive major projects cost overruns.

These were simple questions that should have been answered honestly, were instead avoided, evaded and blocked.

What role will the Belt and Road funding under Labor’s special deal with the Chinese Communist Government have?

The government majority committee arrogantly blocked questions about whether Daniel Andrews will borrow money from the Chinese Government’s Belt and Road initiative.

What secret deals were done in China to fund Daniel Andrews’ major project cost blowouts? Jacinta Allan refused to confirm where the extra cash will come from, saying only that:

 “The expenditure of those funds will be accounted for in accordance with the requirements set out in the Financial Management Act and I’ve got nothing further to add to those comments”.

A senior bureaucrat, Cory Hannett, was asked about a recent trip to China and who he met with and the role of Belt and Road funding for projects.

Labor’s Committee Chair, Lizzy Blandthorn, blocked the questions at the insistence of Jacinta Allan. So much for transparency, openness and accountability!

Daniel Andrews’ communist Chinese begging bowl is clearly a very touchy topic for Victorian Labor.

Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Transport Infrastructure, David Davis:

“Labor can never manage money or major projects. In Victoria now, Labor has huge cost overruns, multi-billion dollar cost overruns, on major transport infrastructure projects including the Melbourne Metro Tunnel, the Level Crossing Removals Program and the West Gate Tunnel. They have run out of money and they are vulnerable.

“Labor has, in effect, confirmed today they will back-fill existing multi-billion-dollar cost blowouts – pre-COVID-19 cost blowouts – with special COIVD-19 borrowings.

“Now Labor refuses to rule out special borrowings from a communist government through their special Beltand Road treaty. What’s more, they refuse to answer legitimate Parliamentary questions about where the money will come from and what Labor has promised in return."