Business backs GST reform

12 July, 2017

The Business Council of Australia (BCA) has thrown its weight behind CCIWA’s proposal to reform the GST and stimulate national economic growth through industries like mining and oil and gas.

In its submission to the Productivity Commission inquiry into GST distribution, the BCA called for a partial equalisation model – as proposed by CCI – as this approach would reduce the “disincentive for states to pursue reforms that grow their revenue base or achieve service delivery improvements”.

The BCA submission calls for another proposal recommended to the PC by CCI, the implementation of a ratcheting GST floor, below which no state or territories’ share should fall.

It would be introduced as WA’s GST relativity recovers.

BCA noted, “the WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s calls to exclude a portion of mining revenue [from the GST calculation],” and acknowledged “there is a disincentive imposed by the [GST distribution] system for the states to unilaterally develop any tax base, including mining revenue”.

CCI Chief Economist Rick Newnham says CCI and the WA business community is proud to have BCA’s support.

“The Business Council of Australia has looked at the big picture – GST is holding our country back from driving new growth through developing resources industries, and if reform is achieved, there can be more jobs, more prosperity and better opportunities for all Australians,” he says.

“The BCA is a forum for the chief executives of Australia’s largest companies to promote economic and social progress in the national interest – their recognition of the need for GST reform to drive national economic growth is a powerful endorsement of what CCI, alongside WA politicians, business leaders and the entire ‘Team WA’ GST reform collective, have been fighting for.

“CCI has been leading the ‘Team WA’ charge in calling for GST reform in the national interest, and we welcome the BCA’s submission as a critical step forward in bringing ‘Team Australia’ together to drive change.

Recognition of the need for GST reform has been echoed by the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association, the Chamber of Minerals and Energy, the Minerals Council of Australia, Rio Tinto, BHP and Woodside.

CCI’s submission was made in consultation with its 9000 Members and has the support of WA business leaders including Wesfarmers Chairman Michael Chaney, Fortescue Metals Group Chairman Andrew Forrest, investment banker John Poynton and Satterley property group’s Chief Executive Nigel Satterley, who together wrote to the Productivity Commission to support CCI’s proposal.

WA industry associations representing more than 18,000 businesses and more than 400,000 employees also endorsed CCI’s submission, with signatories including the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies, the Civil Contractors Federation, Master Builders Western Australia, National Disability Services WA, the Regional Chambers of Commerce and Industry WA, the Real Estate Institute of Western Australia, the Tourism Council and the Western Australian Road Transport Association.

►Want to learn more about CCI’s plan for a fairer GST? View our complete submission to the Productivity Commission here.