Abbott at the feet of Palmer and Rinehart: Swan

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Treasurer Wayne Swan has accused Opposition leader Tony Abbott of acting for mining magnates Clive Palmer and Gina Rinehart instead of the Australian people.

Swan’s comments follow reports the Coalition is planning to ask mining companies to bankroll new dams across Australia.

According to News Ltd Swan said the funding would not make up for Abbott’s plans to repeal the mining tax.

"Building a few dams is no substitute for a major new tax break for 2.7 million small business owners or a boost to the retirement savings for 8.4 million Australian workers," he said.

"Tony Abbott has again decided to kneel down at the feet of Clive Palmer and Gina Rinehart, rather than stand up for Australian small businesses and workers."

Small business Minister Brendan O’Connor said funds from the mining tax would be a far better boon to Australia than the Coalition’s plans.

He said the dams were "in unspecified locations, for unknown purposes".

In announcing the plan the Coalition said new dams would be used to store water for its goal to double Australia’s food production.

Dams taskforce deputy chairman Barnaby Joyce said the recent floods in Queensland and New South Wales had reinforced the need to store water.

Image: The Brisbane Times

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