The Treasurer Joe Hockey recently made a statement that the way tax is imposed and collected in years to come will more than likely change from the current process around GST, PAYG, FBT, personal income tax and the like. That statement came as a result of discussion on the 2015 intergenerational report.
We agree that the way collecting tax will change. Here is a proposal for a 2% tax on all transactions that might be one way to go, and might well not be a way to go, but every way of collecting the tax essential for the good health of the country needs to be considered.
The federal opposition also recently made an announcement around the collection of tax from tax dodging big international businesses. The big end of town naturally came out and got all flustered about “unintended consequences” and the like (we in small business know all about the unintended consequences of big business being left unregulated and unchecked). That announcement was also welcomed and we need to step up and confront non-Australian businesses such as Amazon, Book depository and IKEA. All countries around the world (except perhaps for the Bahamas, Luxembourg and others who fail the international community) have this problem of tax dodging by large corporations.
Let’s find a way to change unacceptable behaviour.
In the end a new tax collection system that takes advantage of technology and does not inhibit business, particularly small business, will need to be developed. Australia can and should lead the way. We have the necessary skeptics to test new ideas but happily we have the people with imagination and innovation to come up with new ideas in the first place, nearly all of them small business people. Very nice.