Media Release - Liberal’s Unfunded Corporate Tax Cut Undermined By ATO Data Showing Widespread Tax Minimisation & Evasion

09 Dec 2016



Liberal’s Unfunded Corporate Tax Cut Undermined By ATO Data Showing Widespread Tax Minimisation & Evasion

Today’s Corporate Transparency Report from the Australian Tax Office, a product of legislation introduced under Labor, shows 700 or 36 per cent of Australian public and foreign-owned companies as well as Australian owned private companies paid no tax in 2014-15. 

The failure of the Coalition to crack down on multinational tax avoidance is evident in the data as the share of large firms paying tax has stayed unchanged.

While there are legitimate reasons why some companies paid no tax in 2014-15 this data shines a light on the ethical bankrupt behaviour of some large corporates, both public and private.

Over the past couple of years some of Australia’s largest global companies including BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto have been exposed for using aggressive transfer pricing, costing the public purse billions of dollars in revenue.  

These figures also demonstrate the absurdity of the Turnbull Government’s assertion that a company tax cut will drive jobs and investment. We know that courtesy of deductions, deferred losses, minimisation and evasion public companies in Australia pay an average of 24 per cent on their taxable income while private companies pay an average of just 19 per cent. 

Most Australian businesses pay their fair share of taxes but many multinationals do not and today’s figures shred the case that Turnbull’s company tax cut has anything to do with attracting foreign investment.

If jobs and growth aren’t materialising at Australia’s effective tax rates of 24 per cent and 19 per cent how will a cut in the headline rate make any difference? And will those companies pay no tax, at any rate, be suddenly inspired to hire? 

When so many companies fail to pay tax it gives the green light to other companies to have a go.

Everyday workers have the sense that the economy is an inside/outside game where the wealthy play by very different rules and everyone else is denied opportunity.

The Coalition’s $50 billion unfunded corporate tax cut clearly demonstrates whose side they’re on. 


Friday 12 December 2016

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