Thought bubbles no substitute for good tax policy

In his hunt for announcements to distract from the disastrous budget, Joe Hockey has today released a series of half-baked ideas about multinational tax. That's not the basis for good public policy.

MEDIA RELEASE

THOUGHT BUBBLES NO SUBSTITUTE FOR GOOD TAX POLICY

Joe Hockey's announcement of 'new' multinational tax measures shows just how out of his depth the Treasurer is when it comes to making companies pay their fair share.

The proposal Mr Hockey has floated today comes with no details and no dollar figure attached. 

At a time when he is crowing about every dollar ripped from the pockets of pensioners, families and university students, Mr Hockey cannot say how much new tax revenue he expects to make by pursuing international firms.

He apparently hasn't even worked out whether new legislation will be needed to give effect to these measures, or when they might be implemented.

This is clearly policy on the run from a Treasurer who is under pressure from his colleagues and seeking distractions from his disastrous budget.

Labor welcomes any serious proposal to tackle multinational tax avoidance. That's why in government we introduced a comprehensive package of measures to stop billions of dollars being siphoned offshore.

If Joe Hockey really wants to tighten Australia's tax net, then he should start with the $1.1 billion worth of Labor measures that he walked away from upon taking office. 

Those measures are costed, deliverable and well targeted - everything today's spur of the moment thought-bubble is not.

Joe Hockey is also displaying total hypocrisy when it comes to the Australian Tax Office. 

While talking up its role in catching tax dodgers, the Treasurer is running down the resources needed to do this. He has slashed $189 million from the tax office's budget, forcing 4,700 experienced staff out the door.

The contrast could not be clearer. Where Labor wants to take real action to tackle multinational tax avoidance, Joe Hockey simply wants headlines to take the focus of his unfair budget. 

TUESDAY, 9 DECEMBER 2014

MEDIA CONTACT: JENNIFER RAYNER 0428 214 856


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