Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The Henry Review is imminent

My guess is in one of the next two weeks

Here Sennex provides an overview of the main points of Henry (for the government) and Ergas (for the Opposition):

And thank you Sennex for your very kind words.

Treasurer Wayne Swan has provided a hint as to the scale and complexity of the Henry Tax Review telling a business audience the as yet unreleased reports outlines "very difficult trade-offs" that will take a decade to work trough.

"It won’t be long now before the review is released and when it is you’ll see the very difficult trade-offs we face," he told chief executives from the Business Council of Australia in Sydney.

"In a lot of areas we are on the same page"...

The Treasurer promised to release "a considered initial response" at the same time as the report, "so you have some certainty".

"I also want to reiterate the point that you should not expect a legislative package dropped on the table for immediate implementation," he said.

" Instead the release of the report will be another step in the decade-long process of careful, deliberate reform we need in the tax system."

The Treasurer has had the tax report since Christmas...

It recommends a resource rent tax that would push up the headline rate facing coal and iron ore miners from 30 to 40 per cent. In return they would be freed from state royalty payments and would pay no tax until their profits exceeded a "normal" level. The Henry Review sells the idea as profit-sharing, giving Australia a better return from its mineral wealth when times are good and forcing it to share more of the pain when times turn bad.

The review finds against an increase in the 9 per cent superannuation levy but endorses a small extra Medicare-style disability levy on wages, and proposes a rationalisation of Australia's myriad means of taxing saving. The changes would see bank interest taxed more lightly and superannuation earnings taxed more heavily.

Among the less contentious measures are voluntary simple tax returns and government-backed longevity insurance to protect retirees from their super running out.

The Treasurer has promised to release the review before the May Budget and last night revealed that in mid-April he will travel to Washington to meet his G-20 counterparts.

Related Posts

. The Henry Tax Review: not quite as leaked

. Guess what? Henry examined the evidence

. Unveiling... recommendations of the Coalition's Henry Review