Commonwealth-State financial relations

Queensland Treasury works closely with other Queensland Government departments and other Treasuries to safeguard Queensland’s interests on the national stage and ensure Commonwealth payments are appropriate for Queensland to meet its service delivery and infrastructure responsibilities.

This work is guided by the Intergovernmental Agreement on Federal Financial Relations, which sets the overarching framework for financial relations between the Commonwealth, states and territories. At a high level, it outlines the principles for collaboration on policy development, service delivery and the implementation of key economic and social reforms that are of national significance.

In the 2023–24 Federal Budget delivered in May 2023, Commonwealth payments to Queensland were estimated to be around $39.3 billion in 2023–24, comprising: 

  • $18.6 billion in payments for specific purposes, including towards key policy areas of Health, Disability, Housing, Skills, Education and Infrastructure)
  • $1.2 billion in other Australian Government grants (including payments to Queensland Government agencies for Australian Government own-purpose expenditure,
  • $19.5 billion in payments for general purposes, primarily through the distribution of goods and services tax (GST) revenue.

In total, Commonwealth payments make up around 48 per cent of Queensland’s revenue.

Intergovernmental forums 

Australia’s federal relations architecture includes intergovernmental forums where Commonwealth, state and territory ministers can meet to progress a range of priority cross-jurisdictional issues. 

At the core of this architecture is National Cabinet, the forum for the Prime Minister, Premiers and Chief Ministers to meet and work collaboratively on national priorities.

Under this architecture are two parallel Treasurers forums: 

  • Council on Federal Financial Relations (CFFR) comprises the Commonwealth, state and territory Treasurers and drives coordinated action to address national economic and fiscal challenges. This includes overseeing the Intergovernmental Agreement on Federal Financial Relations. 
  • Board of Treasurers (BOT) is an independent body comprising all state and territory Treasurers that works to uphold the sovereignty of state and territory governments within the Australian constitutional framework, with respect to federal financial relations. It also works to enhance the leadership and cooperation of states and territories on national reform priorities and issues of common interest. 

Queensland Treasury directly supports the Treasurer and Under Treasurer to participate in matters around CFFR and BOT. Queensland Treasury also provides advice to support the Premier and portfolio ministers in broader matters relating to Commonwealth-State financial relations. 


Additional Resources 

Last updated: 20 February 2024