In an interview with 9News political editor Chris Uhlmann on Tuesday night, Mr Frydenberg said the Budget was a “balancing act” between acting on families’ concerns and strengthening the economy.
Watch the full interview in the video player at the top of the page.
“We’ve had to take decisions to increase funding for the COVID response,” he said.
“That’s, of course, required this cost of living relief that will come at a very important time for Australian families.
“And then we’re investing in this Budget and our long term economic plan to create more jobs with further investments and infrastructure, in skills in the digital economy.”
Mr Frydenberg said halving the fuel excise would reduce inflation and all the cost of living measures put together accounted for less than half a percent of Australia’s GDP.
The Treasurer who once declared the Budget was “back in black”, now settles for a “material improvement” in debt, with no prediction of a return to surplus across the forward estimates.