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REIA and Tax Coalition

15 Dec 14

REIA has joined representatives from business and community sectors in an on-going dialogue about the very topical issues of tax reform – ahead of the Government’s tax review next year.

The group, the Business Community for Tax Reform (BCTR), aims to generate a common voice that can negotiate jointly with the government over what is likely to an overhaul of the Australian taxation system that will have far-reaching impacts right across the economy.

The BCTR acts as an umbrella group to bring together the views of Australia’s most important and influential business groups. Its members represent both large and small enterprises on tax reform issues.

The group will meet on 15 December in Sydney with around 70 executives, including REIA’s CEO and Policy Manager, attending from the mining, property, financial services and retail sectors as well as leaders from community and charity groups.

There is currently enormous opportunity for significant tax reform with the Murray Review of the banking industry finalised last week and the Harper Competition Review presently underway as well  as the Federal Government’s taxation white paper (of which the first terms of reference are expected to be released within weeks).

“If we are to effect meaningful tax reform in Australia and encourage inclusive growth that benefits both business and the community, we need to present a case for change,” said Amanda Lynch, CEO of REIA, which is an executive member of BCTR.

“The current tax system is stagnating and is not reflective of current social trends for a more mobile population with taxes such as stamp duty restricting both labour and population mobility. REIA  also wants to ensure that we present a strong case to broader business community on the importance of negative gearing in allowing mum and dad investors the opportunity to help safeguard their retirement.

The principles underlying the BCTR’s vision for tax reform in Australia are simplicity, transparency and certainty, all of which underpin competitiveness. A successful tax system should also drive productivity, workforce participation, and balance economic efficiency with fairness and equity.

Ms Lynch said: “A more efficient tax system that supports economic growth, employment creation, investment and productivity will help strengthen the tax base for the future.” “While we may not be able to agree on all elements of reform, it is clear that tax reform is needed to address the key challenges facing Australia’s competitiveness, barriers to participation, employment creation and investment; complexity and reliance on inefficient taxes.”

The meeting will also attempt to find common agreement on far-reaching issues such as sustainable growth and affordable housing.

This article is brought to you by REIA Chief Executive Officer, Amanda Lynch

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