Federal budget 2017: Scott Morrison makes promise of better days for government

Angry bankers say they've been left with more questions than answers after meeting with Treasury officials over the $6.2 billion levy the biggest five institutions are set to pay in a surprise new Budget measure.

Treasurer Scott Morrison has described the 2017-18 budget as "honest", attempting to please first home buyers, pensioners and Global Positioning System, but it's set to hit the hip pockets of big banks and high wage earners.

It expects to reach a surplus of $7.4 billion by 2020-21, an improvement on the $1 billion surplus projected at the midyear budget update in December. This is regarded by many economists as very optimistic.

Morrison said the government would inject up to A$5.3 billion over the next 10 years into the newly developed Sydney Airport Corporation, which will both build and operate the facility.

"This budget will be committed to fairness, opportunity and security, ensuring that Australians are given the opportunity to get ahead, the economic growth that enables them to get ahead, to get a better job, a better-paying job, to start a business, grow a business, to realize their dreams", Turnbull told reporters. Diron added that the removal of the zombie measures "enhances the transparency and predictability of budget outcomes, a credit positive".

Health and Ambulance Services Minister Cameron Dick today told State Parliament that tonight's Federal Budget must restore the Commonwealth cuts to Queensland dental, mental health and aged care funding and put back the $10B that's been ripped out of Queensland public hospitals.

Crossbench senator Nick Xenophon said his team would look at the measure "favourably".

"We are pleased to see action to achieve a surplus by 2020/21, but are concerned that most of the improvement to the bottom line comes from more taxes rather than less spending", Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry chief executive James Pearson said.

The Treasurer was unrepentant when speaking about the new tax, which he admits will be used for budget fix after he was forced to dump more than $13 billion of "zombie" savings measures from the 2014 federal budget that had failed to pass the parliament.

Morrison has hinted at a package to tackle affordability and help first home buyers, while foreign investors could be slugged with new fees if they leave their investment properties empty.

The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) last week held interest rates at a record low 1.50%, citing concern about fuelling more borrowing in the country's red-hot property market.

Mr Howard, who was able to successfully negotiate with the Australian Democrats in the Senate when he was prime minister, acknowledged his Liberal successor Malcolm Turnbull had a harder time getting legislation passed. Another A$4 billion will come from taxes on multinationals as the government expands its anti-tax avoidance laws to include trusts and foreign partnerships. That compares with the RBA's estimates of 2.75 to 3.75% by mid-2018 through to June 2019.

The jobless rate is set to ease from 5.75 per cent this year to 5.25 per cent in 2020/21.

Western Australia gaining $1.6 billion to improve road access to the Fiona Stanley Hospital precinct and $700 million for its METRONET rail project.

  • Zachary Reyes