Morrison takes Australian shoppers offline - Media Release

CHRIS BOWEN, SHADOW TREASURER

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER

ED HUSIC, SHADOW MINISTER FOR THE DIGITAL ECONOMY

MORRISON TAKES AUSTRALIAN SHOPPERS OFFLINE

Today’s announcement from Amazon that it will no longer allow Australians to access its international sites will reduce consumer choice and is an utter embarrassment for the Treasurer.

Amazon has announced that due to implementation difficulties associated with the government’s legislated model of GST collection on product purchases under $1000, Australians shoppers will from 1 July this year no longer be able to purchase goods on Amazon overseas sites such as amazon.com and amazon.co.uk.

Online platforms like Amazon have previously warned these sorts of changes would occur if the Government pressed ahead with its preferred model of GST collection on small parcels.

This is a direct response to how the Government has sought to implement this reform.

This is a slap in the face for Australian consumers already struggling with the cost of living who will now not be able to seek out potentially cheaper products on overseas Amazon sites.

Less purchasing choice means higher prices for Australian consumers at a time when they are struggling with record low wages growth and cost of living pressures.

Due to the Government’s incompetence Australian customers will now have access to only a fraction of the estimated 500 million products available on international sites like Amazon.com, potentially driving up the costs of everyday goods.

Just last year despite the obstruction of the Treasurer Labor forced the Government to delay the commencement of this GST legislation while the Productivity Commission undertook a short review, due to the obvious difficulties associated with the Government’s proposed implementation model. The Productivity Commission’s conclusion was hardly a ringing endorsement of the Government’s preferred model, it stated “the legislated model is the most feasible at this time”.

Labor has always agreed that there should be a level playing field for domestic and offshore retailers when it comes to the GST, but has consistently pointed out the shortfalls and problems with the Government’s proposed implementation.

It is clear if Australian consumers are going to lose out because of Scott Morrison’s GST collection model, it will fall to a Labor Government to fix it.

THURSDAY, 31 MAY 2018

Authorised by Noah Carroll, ALP, Canberra.


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