In media release No 2011/043, issued 22 March 2011, the Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Financial Services and Superannuation, Bill Shorten, announced that Australians will be able to make tax deductible donations directly to the New Zealand Government's Christchurch Earthquake Appeal after the Government agreed to list the Appeal by name in the tax laws as a deductible gift recipient (DGR).
Listing the Appeal as a DGR means that Australians who donate $2 or more to the Appeal are eligible to receive a tax deduction for their donation. Previously, Australians could donate to Australian-based charities raising funds for the Earthquake Appeal, but not directly to the New Zealand-based Appeal.
Donations to the Appeal are tax deductible for a period of two years from 22 March 2011. Taxpayers should ensure that they retain a receipt for their donation.
The Assistant Treasurer said that the Government will introduce legislation as soon as practical to give effect to this decision.