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The Alignment of Tax and Financial Accounting Rules: Is it Feasible?


It is a well recognised proposition that the existing Australian tax system is unnecessarily complex and inefficient. The alignment of financial accounting income and taxable income has for many years been suggested as a possible solution to some of the problems. This paper examines, in the current climate, the merits of aligning the financial accounting rules and tax laws. Specifically, this article suggests that although it is not feasible to have the existing tax laws conform to the financial accounting rules nor the existing financial accounting rules to conform to the tax laws, there is considerable conceptual merit in developing a new set of common rules that is used for both tax and financial accounting purposes.

Author profile

Aldrin De Zilva CTA
Aldrin is the Head of Projects and Infrastructure at Greenwoods & Herbert Smith Freehills and has over 20 years experience in a specialist taxation role. He acts predominantly for large multinational and Australian listed companies and has significant experience in advising both vendors and purchasers in multi-billion dollar infrastructure projects. As well as providing taxation advice, Aldrin has been the instructing solicitor on a number of matters before the Federal Court and High Court of Australia. Aldrin has been recognised as one of Australia’s leading tax controversy advisers by the International Tax Review and is heavily involved in consultations regarding taxation law reforms, including assisting the Board of Taxation. Aldrin is a Senior Fellow at the University of Melbourne and lectures in the Masters of Taxation program. - Current at 24 January 2017
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