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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 7 Hansard (6 June) . . Page.. 2712..

on the matter. I think the issue now is that the economic credibility of the Liberal Party in the ACT is in serious question. If you think, Mr Seselja, that being the lone voice against sensible tax reform is a good position to be in and that enhances your economic management skills, I hope you continue to hold that position.

MR SMYTH: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Treasurer, will your tax policy as announced lead to equilibrium in the property market or disequilibrium, or are the rapidly announced transition provisions now being considered an indication that you got it wrong?

MR BARR: As we have indicated, we are gradually introducing changes, and there is a phased introduction of the stamp duty changes. There is a phased introduction of the homebuyer concession scheme changes. The Leader of the Opposition knows that. We are seeking to send very clear signals around increasing supply in the housing market. We want to put downward pressure on house prices, downward pressure on rents by encouraging new supply of affordable product. So we do not want the same dollars chasing the existing housing stock; we want to add to the housing stock. That is where the alignment of our housing affordability policies, our land release policies and our tax policy settings all encourage—

Mr Smyth: On a point of order, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Smyth. Stop the clock, thank you.

Mr Smyth: The question was: would the policy as announced lead to equilibrium or disequilibrium in the property market? I ask that you bring the minister to the answering the question rather than explaining what the policy is.

MR SPEAKER: Minister, you have some time remaining. Focus on the question at hand.

MR BARR: We are seeking to improve and increase the supply side of the market. Equilibrium is the intersection of supply and demand, as the shadow treasurer would well know. By increasing supply, we are able to put downward pressure on prices in both the home purchase market and in the rental market. The targeted changes that we have made to our tax policy settings ensure that there is incentive for new supply and that we will see downward pressure.

Mr Smyth: And the transition arrangements?

MR BARR: The transition arrangements have been designed to ensure that there is a smooth transition from one scheme to the next.

Mr Coe: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, the question was about dead weight loss, which is actually unrelated to the demand or supply curve.

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