On 18 May 2012, the Assistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation, David Bradbury, gave an address entitled "Tax Reform for an Economy in Transition" to the 5th Annual Tax Forum of the NSW Division of The Tax Institute, held in Sydney, New South Wales.
In a wide ranging address, Mr Bradbury rejected suggestions by The Tax Institute that consultation on the proposed changes to Part IVA isn't 'genuine' because the idea of making 'no change' is off the table. "Having consulted and made the policy decision, the Government was clear from the outset that we would consult further on how to implement the policy without unintended consequences", Mr Bradbury said.
Mr Bradbury also commented on the Government's decision to make a number of retrospective changes to the tax laws, including in the areas of consolidation and transfer pricing.
"Retrospective tax legislation is generally only done where the law is operating in a manner inconsistent with the Parliament's intention (this includes but is not limited to examples of egregious tax avoidance and evasion) and there is a risk of significant revenue loss. Where the dividing line on these matters should be drawn can, of course, be open to debate and contention," Mr Bradbury said.