Victoria predicts unprecedented hit to the economy, mass unemployment

Victoria predicts unprecedented hit to the economy, mass unemployment

Modelling conducted by the Victorian Government has predicted levels of unemployment and economic decline "unlike anything most Australians have seen in their lifetimes".

Based on the research undertaken by the Victorian Department of Treasury and Finance, the Covid-19 crisis could lead to 270,000 jobs being lost in the state, with the unemployment rate to peak in the September quarter of 2020.

Further, the modelling shows that Gross State Product will decline by an unprecedented 14 per cent in the June quarter.

"It is impossible to overstate the devastating impact the coronavirus pandemic is having on lives and livelihoods we owe it to Victorians to do everything we can to save lives and save jobs," says Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews.

"These numbers confirm what the Governor of the Reserve Bank and the Federal Treasury have already made clear Australia is facing an unprecedented economic crisis but we'll keep working with the Federal Government and as part of the National Cabinet to help our nation respond and recover."

The Victorian Government is currently bringing a $500 million support package to Parliament to implement urgent reforms such as a temporary ban on evictions, pauses on rental increases for six months and provides land tax relief for landlords and rent relief for tenants.

Further, Victoria will defer the planned increase in the landfill levy until 1 January 2021, which should save taxpayers around $33 million across the rest of the calendar year.

These measures build on the Victorian Government's initial $1.7 billion Covid-19 stimulus package. Already more than $400 million in payroll tax refunds have been paid out to 17,000 small and medium sized businesses as part of that package.

Updated at 12:02PM AEST on 22 April 2020.

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