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In media release No 2012/028, issued 15 May 2012, the Assistant Treasurer and Minister Assisting for Deregulation, David Bradbury, announced the convening of an expert roundtable to assist with the implementation of the Gillard Government's clarifications of the definition of 'tax benefit' in Part IVA of ITAA 1936.

The role of the roundtable is to provide advice on how best to implement the proposed clarifications announced on 1 March 2012, rather than revisit the policy decisions announced by the Government.

Specifically, the Government has asked the roundtable to provide views on:

  • design options for clarifying the operation of Part IVA to overcome the technical deficiencies with the meaning of 'tax benefit' that have been exposed by recent decisions of the Federal Court;
  • the terms of draft legislation prepared for public consultation; and
  • possible implementation issues.

The independent experts on the roundtable include representatives from tax and accounting bodies, legal experts and academics, including The Tax Institute, represented by Grant Wardell-Johnson. Treasury will chair the roundtable.

In addition, formal advice will be sought from senior tax barristers to ensure that the draft amendments are effective and do not have any unintended consequences.

Mr Bradbury said that the Government is aware that some taxpayers and their advisers have expressed concern about the intended scope of the proposed amendments announced on 1 March 2012.

"I would like to clarify today that these will be targeted changes, focussed on the definition of 'tax benefit'," Mr Bradbury said.


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