26 Nov 1212 Assistant Treasurer's address - Towards a fair, competitive and sustainable corporate tax base
On 22 November 2012, the Assistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation, David Bradbury, gave an address entitled "Towards a fair, competitive and sustainable corporate tax base" to the ICAA National Tax Conference, held at the Hilton Hotel, Sydney, New South Wales.
The Assistant Treasurer commented on the low effective tax rates of multinational enterprises, including Google Australia.
Mr Bradbury said:
"It is not my usual practice to mention companies by name or to publicly canvass the tax position of particular taxpayers. Nor is it my normal practice to publicly discuss strategies employed to minimise corporate tax.
However, I will be departing from my usual practice today as I believe there is a strong public interest in drawing attention to practices that have the potential to undermine the future sustainability of Australia's corporate tax base.
I must stress that all of the material used in this speech today has been sourced from the public domain. I also want to be clear that I am not suggesting that these companies are in breach of the law as it stands.
Many of you would have seen media reports on the level of tax paid by Google Australia."
Mr Bradbury has asked Treasury to develop a scoping paper, to be led by the head of Revenue Group, Rob Heferen, to "deepen [the Government's] understanding of these issues".