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Personal income tax reform in Australia: The way forward


This paper provides a summary overview of the personal income tax–transfer reform debate in Australia. It attempts to employ a balanced approach to examine the main issues and arguments put forward by various schools of thought with regard to tax reform. First, it explores in depth the meaning of tax reform and reaffirms that tax cuts are not necessarily tax reform. Secondly, it presents a brief diagnosis of Australia’s current personal income tax–transfer system. Thirdly, it surveys the tax theoretical literature as a guide to tax policy. Fourthly and finally, it discusses a variety of constraints and options for tax reform in Australia. It also outlines the three-stage approach (micro-simulation, Delphi study and surveying) to be adopted by the authors in their future tax reform studies.

Author profiles:

Paul Drum CTA
Paul is Senior Tax Counsel at CPA Australia. Current at 13 July 2006 Click here to expand/collapse more articles by Paul DRUM.
Author Photo - Christopher Evans
Prof Christopher Evans
Chris is Professor of Taxation and former Head of the Australian School of Taxation (Atax) at UNSW Australia. He specialises in comparative taxation, capital and wealth taxation, tax law and administration, tax policy and reform. His PhD from UNSW was a comparative study of the operating costs of taxing capital gains. He also holds a master’s degree in European Political Integration from Leicester University and a Bachelor’s honours degree in Economics from London University, as well as postgraduate educational qualifications from Leeds University. He has researched and published extensively in taxation, and is a co-author of Australian Taxation Law and Cooper & Evans on CGT. He is General Editor of Australian Tax Review and Editorial Board member of other journals. He has served on a number of governmental and professional body committees and working parties in Australia and overseas, including the UK’s Mirrlees Committee and the HMRC International Panel on tax administration. Current at 04 July 2014 Click here to expand/collapse more articles by Chris EVANS.

Binh is an Associate Professor, School of Taxation and Business Law, UNSW and Senior Fellow, Taxation Law and Policy Research Institute, Monash University.
Current at 01 May 2014
Click here to expand/collapse more articles by Binh TRAN-NAM.

Garry Addison
Garry is Senior Tax Adviser with CPA Australia. Current at 13 July 2006 Click here to expand/collapse more articles by Garry ADDISON.

Brian is a visiting fellow at Charles Darwin University.
Current at April 2007
Click here to expand/collapse more articles by Brian ANDREW.
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