Senate debates

Thursday, 23 August 2018

Questions without Notice

Goods and Services Tax

2:27 pm

Photo of Simon BirminghamSimon Birmingham (SA, Liberal Party, Minister for Education and Training) Share this | Hansard source

GST reform is a key reform of the Turnbull government and of this coalition government, and I am confident it will be an enduring reform. In fact, I would be so bold as to predict that, at some time—which I hope is a very long, long way away—those opposite, who have not given a straight answer in relation to our GST reform, will actually just quietly accept it. At some time in the future they will quietly accept it, for Mr Shorten was shown to be somebody incapable, as a leader, of making difficult decisions, of delivering the tough reform that our GST reform has indeed put in place.

Our proposal is a real measure of reform. It will benchmark all states to the economies of New South Wales or Victoria. It will provide greater stability and predictability in state GST payments. We are boosting the GST pool available for the states by providing an injection of $600 million in the pool in 2020-21 and a further $250 million in 2024-25, with all of it to be indexed. I am confident that the only threat to the GST arrangements are those opposite, because they have no policy in this space. They promise bandaid solutions. My WA Senate colleagues—each and every one of them—and the coalition's, the Liberal Party's Western Australian lower house members, championed long and hard for real GST reform, not Labor's bandaid solution and, as a coalition government, we are proud to have achieved it.


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