Those who want to get a good idea of the policies of the Federal Government, can fall back on three important policy documents:
- the Federal Coalition Agreement
- the Federal Government Policy Declaration
- the Federal Policy Statement
At the conclusion of negotiations on the formation of a new Federal Government, all political parties involved announce their approval of the Federal Coalition Agreement. This document sets out the policies of the new government.
The Federal Government Policy Statement contains the framework for the Coalition Agreement. The new Prime Minister makes this statement before the House of Representatives. This is followed by a debate in the House, which is concluded with a vote of confidence.
Each year, at the opening of the parliamentary year at the start of October, the Prime Minister delivers a Policy Statement in the House of Representatives. The government makes clear in its Policy Statement what the policy priorities are for the fiscal year, and also provides policy-related answers to topical social questions. The Policy Statement is linked with the budget delivered by the Parliament: the budget therefore also contains the financial measures for the policies to be implemented.