The coalition government is going through the former Labor government’s budget numbers, Treasurer Joe Hockey says.
Federal government data released on Friday showed the final budget outcome for the 2012/13 financial year was a deficit of $ 18.8 billion.
While this was in line with Labor’s forecast in August, Mr Hockey said it represented a $ 20.4 billion deterioration from the billion-dollar surplus promised in the May budget.
“We are carefully, methodically going through all the details of the current budget and we’ll have more to say about the current state of play in due course,” Mr Hockey said.
Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said Friday’s figures confirmed the “deteriorating state of the budget”.
He said Labor had inherited a strong budget and debt position from the Howard coalition government in 2007.
“The Labor party has consistently blamed the global financial crisis for their failure to achieve budget surpluses,” Senator Cormann said.
“But the promises made (in the 2012/13 budget) were all made after the global financial crisis.”
Senator Cormann said there would be “further consequences” to the budget bottom line as the new government examined the 2013/14 budget settings.