Business wary of carbon tax
D E V E L O P M E N T g r o u p Mount Isa to Townsville Economic Zone wants more information on the federal government’s plans to introduce a tax on carbon but has indicated opposition to the move.
The peak regional development organisation for an area encompassing seven councils including Townsville, met in Richmond on Friday where the issue was raised but further discussion was deferred until more information and clarification was available.
Chair David Glasson said at this time a carbon tax, as a straight out tax, would be opposed by its members if there was no incentive or return to business in the region.
‘‘ MITEZ welcomes the ex- clusion of agriculture under the proposed tax on carbon, however, other industries in the region, particularly mining and minerals processing, need to be protected from additional costs of doing business in Australia as many competitors operate in countries where there may be less or no cost to industry such as a carbon price,’’ Mr Glasson said.
Townsville Chamber of Commerce president John Carey said the chamber also needed more detail on the potential impacts on small b u s i n e s s a n d t h e c i t y ’ s metals refining sector.
Mr Carey said there was also concern about the viability of metals refining in Townsville.
‘‘ If, as a consequence of its imposition, the refineries – important cogs in our community – become unviable, that will be a problem.’’
Townsville branch president of the Urban Development Institute of Australia Pat Brady said he personally b e l i e v e d t he c o mmunity needed to acknowledge there was a cost from carbon and that putting a price on it was a way of accounting for that cost.