The Nationals have endorsed a plan which would close a tax loophole giving foreign retailers a ten per cent price advantage over local Australian retailers, according to Victorian Nationals Senator, Bridget McKenzie
“At the moment foreign retailers can sell goods to Australia up to $1000 without charging any GST, under a loophole known as the Low Value Threshold or LVT,” Senator McKenzie explained.
“This GST concession to foreign business is unfair on Australia’s 140,000 retailers which do have to charge GST.
“These domestic retailers account for 4 per cent of the economy and are under significant stress at present.”
“The GST is of course a funding stream for the States and Territories, and at a time when they are particularly hard up for revenue, cutting the threshold at which GST is charged on international goods to $20 would bring in an extra $997 million the first year, rising to $1.64 billion in 2020-21.”*
The Gillard Government has claimed the LVT shouldn’t be changed because of the cost of collection and the burden of compliance on customs; however Senator McKenzie argued that collection should be the responsibility of the foreign retailer.
“If your local corner store can manage the GST, foreign retailers, many of which are huge companies, certainly can. In fact they already do when they are shipping to other countries,” Senator McKenzie said.
“I am proud that my party has once again been the first to stand up and be counted on this fairness issue for Australian small business.”
“We will continue the fight to ensure that foreign retailers do not get an unfair advantage over local retailers under Australia’s taxation system,” Senator McKenzie said.
Media contact: Kathleen Tonini mob:0400530027