Policy on State-Owned Enterprises

State-Owned Enterprises are useful for a number of reasons. A state-owned enterprise can subsidize its product so that the product can compete with cheap foreign imports, without infringing World Trade Organization rules. This can cost less than having the product made in Asian countries and having to pay welfare to the Australians who formerly made the product.

A state-owned enterprise can provide a service which is economically viable but which is too risky for the private sector to provide. For example, the American state-owned enterprise NASA provided a service of transporting space satellites into orbit. Had the service not been provided by a state-owned enterprise, there would have been many fewer satellites.

A state-owned enterprise can prevent companies from obtaining a monopoly position and exploiting the public. The Commonwealth Bank was set up because the public were being ripped off by the major banks. This gave the public the opportunity to switch from the other major banks to the Commonwealth Bank.

Some examples of state-owned enterprises are:

  • NASA
  • Air America
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Aérospatiele
  • Australian Wheat Board
  • Commonwealth Serum Laboratories

If we are elected to run the Australian Government or the government of a major state, we will set up the following State-Owned Enterprises:

  • Oil Refinery
  • Newspaper Company
  • National Television Channel
  • Arms and Ammunition Company
  • Mining Company

If we are elected to run further governments, there will be no need to set up some of these companies, as there will already be a company in the other State that we control. We can set up other companies that Australia needs. A State Government has limited financial resources, so there is a limit to how many state-owned enterprises that a government can set up. Some other state-owned enterprises that Australia could do with are:

  • Integrated Circuit Manufacturing Company
  • Motor Vehicle Manufacturing Company
  • Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Company
  • Mechanical Wristwatch and Lock Company
  • Clothing and Textile Machinery Company
  • Home Appliance and Trade Tools Company
  • Computer Software Company
  • Supermarket Chain
  • Department Store Chain