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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Govt will seek mandate before tax change

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The Turnbull government has yet to decide whether it will pursue a hike in the GST but any change will be put to voters at the next election, a senior Liberal insists.

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann says the government is focused on making the tax system more growth-friendly in order to steer the economy away from resource driven growth.

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The government had not made a decision about changes to the tax system or the GST but would get a mandate from voters at this year’s federal election, Senator Cormann told ABC radio on Thursday.

South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill appeared to take a swipe at Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s opposition to changing the GST.

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There was a “massive and undeniable revenue problem” threatening school and hospital services, as well as the federal budget.

“Both major parties at a national level must front up to the fact that we need to find additional revenue,” Mr Weatherill told The Australian.

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Labor backbencher Nick Champion told Sky News he was “stunned” any Labor premier would support a change to the GST.

Assistant Minister to the Prime Minister Alan Tudge said Mr Weatherill showed “what a small person” Mr Shorten was.

Mr Shorten said he didn’t blame state politicians, who were facing a “fiscal cliff” because of the federal government’s cuts to schools and hospitals.

“I understand that they’ve effectively been taken hostage by the massive cuts that the Abbott-Turnbull governments are imposing on schools and hospitals,” he told reporters in Darwin.

A 15 per cent GST would not only mean higher living costs but would kill consumer confidence and force small businesses to lay off workers.

“It’s a rotten idea and it should be put in the dust bin of history and that’s where Labor is going to put it.”

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The Indian Telegraph Sydney Australia

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