Monday, 17 December, 2018

Australian govt accelerates tax cuts to sweeten souring polls

Morrison vows to fast-track tax cuts for small business – at a cost of $3.2bn Prime Minister Scott Morrison to fast-track tax cuts for businesses with turnovers of up to $50m
Priscilla Morrison | 13 October, 2018, 22:54

"This means businesses with a turnover below $50 million will face a tax rate of just 25% in 2021-22 rather than from 2026-27 as now legislated".

"We obviously care deeply about the certainty of the tax system and we want to support small business", he said.

The prime minister said the change won't affect the government's plan to return the budget to balance by 2019/20, followed by a more hefty surplus the following year.

The federal government is challenging the Labor Opposition with a plan to introduce earlier than planned a series of tax cuts for small and medium-sized businesses.

"This legislation that delivers this additional tax relief will be a major test for Bill Shorten - does he support Australian businesses, Australian workers and Australian jobs", Mr Morrison said.

Tax rates for small and medium-sized businesses were already cut to 27.5 cents in the dollar a year ago from the previous 30 cents.

Bill Shorten has also pledged to repeal stages two and three of the government's income tax cuts, which together flatten tax scales so workers earning between $40,000 and $200,000 pay the same rate.

"In other cases they invested more in their businesses, because small and medium-sized businesses that's what they do".

Those same cuts were originally scheduled to start in the 2024-25 financial year.

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"Labor's five-point plan, as they said on the weekend: more tax, more tax, more tax, more tax, more tax", he said.

Australian Industry Group chief executive Innes Willox urged Labor to support the cuts.

The Turnbull government passed tax cuts for small and medium businesses in March 2017 but plans to extend the tax cuts to big business were thwarted by the Senate, prompting the Coalition to promise to accelerate the tax cuts for small and medium businesses instead.

"But if it's affordable, well, then we'll look at doing both".

The Opposition wants to keep the cut at 27.5%.

Leader Richard Di Natale has told Sky News the tax cuts would not help smaller players as much as the Government claims and the cuts are based on a failed economic theory.

Strong says the decision will hopefully limit investment drain to larger economies such as United Kingdom and U.S., which already have lower tax rates for small businesses.

The prime minister said that whether the cuts lead to higher wages depends on the businesses that will benefit from the policy.

"We've seen inequality worsen. And what we need to do is ensure that every cent that's directed, those many millions of dollars - close to 30 billion, that would be the effect of this huge tax cut - be invested in our schools, in our hospitals, in infrastructure, in the foundations of a decent society".

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