Senate debates

Thursday, 12 November 2015

Questions without Notice: Take Note of Answers

Answers to Questions

3:14 pm

Photo of Dean SmithDean Smith (WA, Liberal Party) Share this | Hansard source

I will come to my own comments around tax in a moment. What did the former West Australian Premier, Geoff Gallop, have to say? Earlier this week he said that he has been on the record for some time talking about the need to increase the GST, and said, 'I think the time has come to take that step.' What did Peter Beattie, the former Queensland Premier, have to say? He said:

This extra five per cent has to go to health and education—

the five per cent being, of course, the suggested or discussed option that might be available to people in terms of raising the GST—

I will have trouble supporting an increase beyond 10 per cent unless it goes to service delivery for the states.

The point is that in this country people are debating the important issue of tax reform, but Labor senators want to ignore the debate and want to talk down opportunities for reform.

It is clear: you cannot have jobs growth and you cannot have economic growth without tackling the important issue of tax reform. I would like to add my bit to the debate—a part of the debate that has been missed so far. The best way to generate jobs and to generate economic growth is to reform GST distribution. GST distribution must be part of any overall solution, any part of tax reform, if Australia is to proceed. I have written to the Prime Minister expressing my views on that, but that is a debate for another time. (Time expired)


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