Daily Bulletin

The Conversation

  • Written by The Conversation Contributor

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said the budget will contain the government’s tax policy, and questioned whether the benefits of increasing the GST would be worth the difficulties of doing so.

As he takes personal control of what has become an internally divisive debate for the Coalition, Turnbull outlined a broad timetable for announcing the details of the government’s tax reform plans. The policy would be set out in the budget, with announcements likely beforehand; further proposals might be put forward in the election run-up.

The May budget “will be the government’s economic platform, the government’s tax platform”, Turnbull said. The government would “likely make announcements between now and then”.

“Depending on the timing of the election, there may be other proposals raised … planks in an election platform presented subsequent to the budget.

“But the budget will, as it does every year, set out the government’s economic blueprint for the year ahead.”

The Abbott government had said there would be a tax green paper with options, followed by a white paper. Turnbull noted that a white paper was where a government set out its policy on a particular topic. “Given we’re so close to the budget, the budget will be, for all practical purposes, the white paper.”

In remarks that will give comfort to backbenchers worried about the electoral consequences of embracing a GST increase, Turnbull highlighted the problems of that course.

He said the government in its tax reforms was not going to raise more tax overall and the changes had to be fair and drive jobs and growth.

The argument had been made that the GST could be raised and the money used to reduce income tax, he said.

But the problem was that, to make the switch fair, pensioners and other low income people would have to be protected, which would amount to “a lot of compensation”. The question would be, after doing that “are we getting a productivity benefit, a growth dividend that justifies the trouble and expense, complications of making the change? That’s why it’s a detailed matter that’s got to be looked at very carefully.”

Turnbull agreed with the states that more money needed to be spent on health – but said they should take greater responsibility for raising the revenue. Some of the most efficient tax bases in Australia were state tax bases like land tax and payroll tax, he said.

The states had to be prepared to go to their citizens and say they needed more money for schools and hospitals and that they were going to increase this or that state tax. “Now when you say that to them, they don’t want to do it. They recoil at the political horror and say no, the federal government should do it,” he said.

“They say, ‘oh, that would be politically difficult’ and you say ‘well .. you are asking us to put up the GST. Do you reckon that is politically easy?’”

Asked about a report the government was preparing to scrap an expensive rise in compulsory superannuation, Turnbull said: “The government has got no plans to change the rise in compulsory super”.

Authors: The Conversation Contributor

Read more http://theconversation.com/turnbull-points-to-problems-in-raising-gst-54250

Writers Wanted

Can eating hot chilli peppers actually hurt you?


The policing of Australian satire: why defamation is still no joke, despite recent law changes


The Conversation


Prime Minister Scott Morrison's interview with Ray Hadley, 2GB

RAY HADLEY: Prime Minister, good morning to you.   PRIME MINISTER: G’day, Ray.   HADLEY: Gee, you’ve had a week.   PRIME MINISTER: Well, there's been a lot of weeks like this. This time last...

Scott Morrison - avatar Scott Morrison

Ray Hadley's interview with Scott Morrison

RAY HADLEY: I'm going to go straight to the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison is on the line right now. Prime Minister, good morning to you.    PRIME MINISTER: Good morning, Ray.   HADLEY: Just d...

Ray Hadley - avatar Ray Hadley

Defence and Veterans suicide Royal Commission

Today the Government has formally established a Royal Commission into Defence and Veteran Suicide following approval by the Governor-General.   Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the Royal Commi...

Scott Morrison - avatar Scott Morrison

Business News

9 Smart Hacks for Your First Day at Work

No matter how much work experience you have, the first day with a new company can be very stressful. Even the biggest professionals find the change of location and work collective a little frighte...

Chloe Taylor - avatar Chloe Taylor

Record year of growth for Tweed based business The Electrical Co

While many businesses struggled to stay afloat during the COVID-19 affected 2021 financial year, Tweed Heads based The Electrical Co. completed more than 50,000 smart meter installations across Aust...

a contributor - avatar a contributor

The Most Common Reasons why Employees End Up Leaving a Company

It is important for businesses to make sure they find the right people for their open positions. That is why a lot of companies are relying on professional outplacement services. A lot of companie...

NewsServices.com - avatar NewsServices.com