Greens leader Adam Bandt says taxpayers should get a stake in projects backed under Future Made in Australia

Dan Jervis-Bardy
The Nightly
The Greens have set the battlelines in the fight over Labor’s Future Made in Australia plan.
The Greens have set the battlelines in the fight over Labor’s Future Made in Australia plan. Credit: William Pearce/The Nightly

Taxpayers should get a stake in the critical minerals and green hydrogen projects backed under the Federal Government’s Future Made in Australia plan, Greens leader Adam Bandt has suggested.

Labor will need the Greens’ backing to get its flagship industry plan through Federal Parliament due to the Coalition’s staunch opposition.

The Government is planning to legislate a Future Made in Australia Act, establishing an overarching framework that will guide initiatives including $13.7 billion in production tax credits for downstream processing of critical minerals and green hydrogen production.

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The West understands the Bill will be introduced before parliament breaks for its winter recess on July 4.

The Government will then consult with industry and other stakeholders on the specific design of the tax credits before that is put to parliament.

Mr Bandt said the Greens saw “big opportunities” for critical minerals and green hydrogen, including in providing new jobs for coal mining workers.

But Mr Bandt is already putting conditions around his party’s support, setting the scene for another big political fight with Labor in Canberra.

He suggested there should be restrictions on how much supply could be exported overseas to avoid domestic shortfalls – a key criticism the Greens have with the gas market.

Mr Bandt also suggested the public should get a stake in the companies that are backed with taxpayer funds under Future Made in Australia.

“We think Government and public ownership of these critical industries in the future is going to be very important to avoid making the same mistakes that Labor has made,” Mr Bandt told ABC’s Insiders program.

He signalled Labor’s ongoing support for the gas industry could be another roadblock.

Shadow treasurer Angus Taylor was on Sunday criticised for opposing Labor’s tax credits after promising more than $1 billion worth of industry grants - including to hydrogen projects - during his time as energy minister.

Mr Taylor said there was a “really big difference” between the support he offered to “R&D projects” and the concessions proposed under the Future Made in Australia plan.

Meanwhile, Mr Bandt repeatedly refused to confirm if the Greens supported cuts to migration after Labor and the Coalition promised to drastically reduce the number of overseas arrivals.

The Government is planning to halve net overseas migration to 260,000 while Peter Dutton’s Opposition wants to go even further, pledging to cut the figure to 160,000 to free up tens of thousands of properties.

Mr Bandt said he would not engage in the “migrant bashing race to the bottom”, insisting property developers and investors – not migrants – were to blame for the housing crisis.

“I’m not going to spend the next year in the lead-up to an election blaming migrants for a problem that they didn’t cause,” he told the Insiders program.


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