Treasury provides advice to Government ministers and other services in support of 'effective government spending and taxation arrangements'. The focus is on the direct activities of the Government, its spending programs, industry assistance, funding of other levels of government and the use of taxation powers. Treasury advises in particular on the Commonwealth Budget and taxation policies.
The Budget is presented to Parliament in May each year. The 2016-17 Budget was released on 3 May 2016.
The Central Budget website is the whole-of-government entry point for Commonwealth Budget material and includes the current and previous budget papers.
Papers from past Budgets (1996-97 onwards) can be accessed from the Budget website.
Charter of Budget Honesty
The Charter of Budget Honesty provides a framework for the conduct of Government fiscal policy. The purpose of the Charter is to improve fiscal policy outcomes. The Charter provides for this by requiring fiscal strategy to be based on principles of sound fiscal management and by facilitating public scrutiny of fiscal policy and performance.
See the Charter of Budget Honesty for further information.
Treasury Portfolio Budget Papers
Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Outlook
The Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Outlook report is required to be released within ten days of a writ for a general election. The information in the report takes into account, to the fullest extent possible, all Government decisions made before the issue of the writ and all other circumstances that may have a material effect on the fiscal and economic outlook.
Federal Financial Relations
The Intergovernmental Agreement on Federal Financial Relations provides an overarching framework for the Commonwealth's financial relations with the States. A key feature of the new framework is the centralised payment arrangements which will simplify payments to the States, aid transparency and improve the States' budget processes.
For further information on Federal Financial Relations, visit the Standing Council on Federal Financial Relations website.
GST Distribution Review
The Review considered whether the distribution of the GST and the current form of horizontal fiscal equalisation ensures that Australia is in the best position to respond to long-term trends and structural change in the economy.
The Panel's final report to the Government was released publicly on 30 November 2012.
See the GST Distribution Review website for further information.
The Future Fund was established to assist future Australian Governments meet the cost of public sector superannuation liabilities by delivering investment returns on contributions to the Fund.
See the Future Fund website for further information.
The Nation-building Funds were established in 2009 to provide financing resourcing to meet the Australian Government’s commitment to Australia’s future investment in critical areas such as transport, communications, energy, water, education, research and health.
See the Department of Finance and Deregulation website for further information.