Australian govt to subsidise power bills for millions with cost-of-living pressure



Canberra: Millions of Australians will receive rebates from their energy bills under a cost of living relief package.

Treasurer Jim Chalmers on Sunday announced the federal budget for 2023-24, which he will hand down on Tuesday, will include about 1.5 billion Australian dollars ($1.01 billion) to subsidise the energy bills of pensioners, welfare recipients and small businesses.

It means about 5.5 million households and 1 million businesses will receive relief worth up to 500 Australian dollars ($337.6) each, Xinhua news agency reported.

Chalmers said the measure would “take some of the edge off what is the key drivers of these cost-of-living pressures”.

The budget will be Chalmers’ second since becoming Treasurer in May 2022.

Chalmers also on Sunday said it would include changes to the Petroleum Resource Rent Tax paid by oil and gas companies on their offshore liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects.

The changes are expected to yield an additional 2.4 billion Australian dollars ($1.6 billion) in tax revenue for the government.

“Now, this means more tax sooner from these projects and it means that it can help fund our cost-of-living package and other priorities in the Budget,” he added.

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