Tax Institute Says Complexities And Welfare Churn Must Be Addressed

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10th December 2008, 07:25pm - Views: 597

Media Release

Thursday 10 December 2008

Tax Institute Response to Australia’s Future Tax System Proposals

Australia’s premier professional tax body, the Taxation Institute of Australia, today welcomed the

release of the Australia’s Future Tax System Consultation Paper as a step in the right direction for tax


The Tax Institute particularly welcomed the addressing of the tax complexity issues and the planned

community consultations to take place in March next year.

President of the Taxation Institute, Sue Williamson, said the Consultation Paper lays the groundwork

for meaningful tax reform as it sets out clearly the often competing views held by the community on a

whole range of tax issues. 

These concerns range from addressing issues of international competitiveness in terms of corporate

tax rates and the taxation of capital, whilst at the same time ensuring that the tax-transfer system

provides the appropriate level of support for those in need.

“It gives a window into the Herculaneum task faced by the Review Panel in coming up with

recommendations that meet the major challenges facing Australia into the 21st Century,” she said.

“Community concerns with the complexity of the tax-transfer system are further highlighted in the 500

submissions to the Review to date and remains the principle challenge for the Review Panel. The

planned community consultation process is going to be very important.

“It is only by focusing on the underlying problems in the system, such as the current high levels of tax-

welfare churn, can real reform be achieved. It is often tempting to focus on the symptoms of this

inequity and complexity, such as the number of tax returns, rather than focusing on the root causes

such as unnecessarily complex policy, administration and legislation.

“It’s vital at this stage to ensure that dialogue with the community about tax reform remains open and

the Consultation Paper ensures this with a platform leading to further consultation rather than providing

any concluded views.” 

As the Taxation Institute has been a strong contributor to the tax reform debate since 1943, it will

continue to make further submissions  to the Review Panel. To maximise input from Australia’s taxation

practitioners, the Taxation Institute will be undertaking a communications program to seek its Member’s


Media Contacts:

Sue Williamson, President - Taxation Institute of Australia on 0411 646 783

Peter Laidlaw, Lighthouse Communications Group on 0419 210 306

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