This 2004 OECD Economic Survey of Australia presents a comprehensive overview of the Australian economy. It finds thanks to widespread and deep reforms in the 80s and 90s, economic performance for the past 13 years has been good, and the short-term outlook is for brisk, low-inflationary growth. However over the longer term, it faces problems related to the ageing population and low labour force participation and productivity. To address these problems, OECD carefully examines challenges for fiscal policy, product market competition, and the labour market, particularly unemployment and labour force participation, and makes a series of recommendations.
Table of contents:
Executive summary Assessment and recommendations 1. Economic performance and key challenges -Economic performance has been outstanding during the thirteen year long upswing -With the drought effects fading, there should be a rebalancing of growth -The challenge of maintaining high economic growth in the face of population ageing -The challenge of sustainable water supply -Bibliography (for chapter and annex) -Annex 1.A.1. Recent trends, outlook, risks and vulnerabilities 2. Fiscal policy: short-term issues and long-term challenges -Fiscal policy -Progress in implementing tax reform -Ageing and public expenditures -Bibliography -Annex 2.A1. The main features and implementation progress of tax reform 3. Product market competition and economic performance -Background of competition policy and other reforms -Macroeconomic performance and indicators of competition -Competition legislation and enforcement -The National Competition Policy -Trade policy -Overall assessment and scope for further action -Bibliography (for chapter and annexes) -Annex 3.A1. Competition policy institutions -Annex 3.A2. Competitive industries – some aspects -Annex 3.A3. Australia’s current trade policy stance -Annex 3.A4. Assessing trade policy