GST floor heat un­der Libs

The West Australian - - NEWS - Shane Wright

The Cham­ber of Com­merce and In­dus­try WA has called on Fed­eral Lib­eral MPs to im­me­di­ately push for a change to the GST sys­tem ahead of the party’s State con­fer­ence at the week­end.

In a let­ter to MPs, the cham­ber’s chief ex­ec­u­tive Dei­dre Will­mott said they should press Prime Min­is­ter Mal­colm Turn­bull to use the con­fer­ence to back the in­tro­duc­tion of a floor be­low which WA’s GST share could not fall.

It comes af­ter the move last week­end by La­bor leader Bill Shorten to prom­ise a $1.6 bil­lion fund to be spent on WA in­fra­struc­ture from 2019, tak­ing WA’s ef­fec­tive GST share to 70¢ in the dol­lar. WA is cur­rently re­ceiv­ing 34.6¢ in the dol­lar.

Ms Will­mott said be­cause Mr Shorten and Mr Turn­bull were ef­fec­tively sup­port­ing a 70¢ floor for WA’s GST, then the Lib­eral Party should start mov­ing to­wards the change im­me­di­ately.

She said a “ratch­et­ing floor” should be in­tro­duced which would en­sure WA’s GST share could not fall any lower.

As it in­creased, no other State or Ter­ri­tory would be left worse off.

“The time for a GST floor is now. I im­plore you to con­tinue your ad­vo­cacy within the Lib­eral Party so that Mal­colm Turn­bull can an­nounce the in­tro­duc­tion of a ratch­et­ing GST floor this week­end,” Ms Will­mott wrote.

She said once the Pro­duc­tiv­ity Com­mis­sion in­quiry into the GST sys­tem was com­plete, the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment should ei­ther carve out one-quar­ter of min­ing roy­al­ties or 20 per cent of all State rev­enue from the Com­mon­wealth Grants Com­mis­sion al­lo­ca­tion.

CCIWA chief Dei­dre Will­mott.

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