Page 3790 - Week 11 - Thursday, 24 November 2022

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Mr Parton: A point of order on relevance, Madam Speaker.

MADAM SPEAKER: Minister, resume your seat.

Mr Parton: The question was very specifically about how BTR addresses Canberrans’ very high demand for detached housing. It was not about opposition policies.

Mr Hanson: On the point of order: the minister, by going back to debates at the last election, is clearly debating rather than answering the question.

MADAM SPEAKER: Thank you. The minister was also responding to housing supply, which goes to housing affordability. Minister.

MR BARR: The key point is that an injection of additional housing supply across the spectrum, both greenfield and infill, both rental and housing for purchase, is all part of the supply side solution, but the supply side solution is not an answer in and of itself. There are other factors. Again, if the opposition wish to put forward an alternative policy proposition they are free to do so.

Mr Parton: Oh, we will!

MR BARR: I am sure you will, but it has to be deliverable, Mr Parton. You will also need to deal with the question of those who are already in the market and the risk of negative equity. (Time expired.)

MR CAIN: Minister, when will you acknowledge the effect of housing supply on affordability and take action to meet Canberrans’ demand for detached housing?

MR BARR: For the benefit of Mr Cain, who obviously wasn’t listening and has paid no attention to the debate—not just today but in fact over the last several years—there are a number of factors that impact on the affordability of housing. There is the interaction of supply and demand. That is basic economics. The cost of finance is a factor. During a period of record low interest rates and record low inflation there was an asset price bubble. That is deliberately being addressed by the Reserve Bank of Australia.

What we are seeing is that the increase in house prices, the rapid increase that was experienced during COVID and during the period of record low interest rates, is now moderating and indeed falling as interest rates have increased.

Opposition members interjecting—

Ms Lawder: Point of order, Madam Speaker.

MADAM SPEAKER: Minister, resume your seat.

Ms Lawder: Standing order 118(b) says the answer to the question “shall not debate the subject”, and 118(a) says “shall be concise and directly relevant”. The question

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