Apparently the WA and Queensland politicians do not like the current GST carve up, which is part of Australia’s long term (i.e. since federation) fiscal equalization policies. They complain that they are not getting their ‘fair share’. One example is here. For those of use old enough to have lived through previous mining booms, we have seen this before. Whenever the prices of minerals rise, the mining states complain about ‘subsidising’ the other states. Of course, silence reigns when the boom finishes.
But the federal government is reviewing the GST distribution and the Victorian government has a nice background paper here. It notes that since federation, Victoria has net paid $66b and NSW has net paid $75b while WA has on net received $36b and Qld has received $11b. Even if we look at just the last 30 years:
the mining states of WA and Queensland have received $106 and $112 per person respectively.
Now the submission does not make it clear exactly how these numbers are calculated, but the direction is correct. Over the long term WA and Qld have gained significantly by federal fiscal equilization. And they will again when the current mining boom fades. So to the people of WA and Qld – be careful what your politicians try to sell you. You may live to regret it.