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CA ANZ calls for “substantive” tax reform

Yasmine Masi12 February 2024
Tax deductibility

A new survey conducted by Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ) of its specialist tax and superannuation members found the majority called for major tax reform.

The survey, which came after the Federal Government’s announcement of changes to its Stage 3 tax cuts proposal, showed stamp duty as the top area requiring reform, followed by income tax and GST.

CA ANZ chief executive, Ainslie van Onselen, said the results show a “complex” framework for reform to be considered.

“It shows just how complex any reform will be as stamp duty is a state-based tax, and that will require state and Federal Governments to work together which our members also identified as a key barrier to any reform, behind a lack of political will and the relative ease of tinkering with existing taxes,” she said.

“A ‘funding the Federation’ roadmap should be an urgent priority for the Government – if not for today then certainly for generations to come.

“While the changes to Stage 3 tax cuts have received lots of attention since they were announced, our members were split down the middle on whether those changes are a good or bad thing, with 52 per cent supporting the move and 48 per cent against.

“The time for ongoing reviews is over. We’ve said it before, and we will keep saying it – we need a plan detailing how Australia will achieve tax reform.”

CA ANZ said 47 per cent of members who participated in the survey and were against the Stage 3 tax cuts changes believe they don’t adequately address bracket creep, while 47 per cent of those who supported the changes believe the changes make the tax cuts more equitable.

The results were also closely split between agreeing that the changes would “stimulate consumer demand” (50 per cent) and agreeing that the changes would stimulate further inflation (45 per cent).

“It’s why in our recent Pre-Budget submission to the Federal Government, we argued that substantive tax reform was needed to cope with an ageing population and to maintain global competitiveness in a digital environment,” van Onselen said.

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