Labor inaction on housing report keeps investors in the dark

Shadow Minister for Housing, Senator Marise Payne, has called on the Gillard Labor Government to expedite a key report detailing the size of the housing shortage in Australia as building approvals continue to lag behind demand.

Senator Payne said the National Housing Supply Council (NHSC) State of Supply Report, which provides crucial information on the state of the housing market, including the shortage of residential housing, was still running behind schedule.

"The Gillard Government and in particular Minister for Sustainability Tony Burke, must get their act together and tell investors in the housing market when the State of Supply Report will be available," Senator Payne said.

"We learn today from the ABS that building approvals fell by 1.3 per cent in April, so the housing shortage is getting worse but investors won‟t have comprehensive information on the state of the market because the report has fallen victim to Labor‟s piecemeal approach to the running of government.

"Minister Burke only got around to announcing members of the State of Supply Council on 12 May 2011 after being told in the Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (SEWPAC) Red Book to the incoming government that these appointments were „critical decisions‟ for the first three months of government after the August 2010 election.

"This is just another example of how Labor treats housing as an afterthought.

"And as if the growing shortage of housing – 202,400 as at June 2010 - isn‟t enough, Labor is about to impose a carbon tax on Australians that will add $6,240 to the cost of an average new house.

"Labor needs to stop taxing and spending and start taking seriously the aspirations of working Australians who want to own their own home and the concerns of investors who provide the capital to develop residential property."