Banana Republic Anyone?

The warnings were voiced decades ago, but Australia has done little to avoid the dire threat of becoming a 'Banana Republic'. Keating's vision is closer to being realised than many think.

Banana Republic Anyone?
Photo by Louis Hansel / Unsplash

Earlier this week, I commented on X (Twitter) about how Australia's future seems set to traverse the 'Banana Republic' status that Paul Keating proclaimed was a risk back in 1986.

Keating's comments were in response to economic data showing Australia's biggest current account deficit ever, at six per cent of GDP.

At the time we had low commodity prices, high government debts and high interest rates that were crippling the economy.

Despite some positive economic reforms, it now seems we have merely delayed the race to become what Keating warned us of.

But first, what does the term Banana Republic even refer to?

A small country that is economically dependent on a single export commodity, such as bananas, and is typically governed by a dictator or the armed forces.

Okay, Australia is a large country with quite a few exports, but it's fair to say that we'd be in much worse shape without mining (specifically Coal and Iron Ore) exports.

We have huge public debts and (anecdotally) are doing less to add value to our primary resource wealth than ever before.

We're bringing in 10,000 immigrants a week to prop up broad-based economic figures while making life worse for those already here. We have a housing crisis, a worker crisis, a mendicant welfare state mentality, and the country has no real capacity to defend itself.

This week, we learned that three out of four new jobs created in the last six months depend on the government.

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