Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has a 'firm intention' to bring the budget back to a strong surplus so a coalition government can fund a national disability insurance scheme (NDIS)
The scheme is expected to cost around $15 billion a year to run when fully implemented in 2018/19.
The Gillard Labor government has so far set aside $1 billion for trial sites, but a Senate estimates committee on Tuesday heard that beyond the next four years, no formal assumptions have been made about its funding.
Mr Abbott told reporters in Sydney on Wednesday the scheme could be funded under a coalition government pending a strong budget surplus.
'If we can get the budget back into strong surplus, and I believe we can ... we will be much better placed to pay for the national disability insurance scheme,' Mr Abbott said.
Asked about the estimates hearing evidence, Mr Abbott said: 'We think that it is possible to implement the NDIS in accordance with the Productivity Commission's timetable.'
'It will be easier to do that responsibly if we can get the budget into strong surplus, and that's our firm intention should we be in government,' he said.
During the estimates hearing, Finance Minister Penny Wong reiterated the government's commitment to the NDIS.
The government is aiming to return a $1.5 billion surplus in 2012/13.
Mr Abbott has previously expressed support for a 'responsible and timely' NDIS.