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I’m writing to you this week from The Tax Institute’s National Convention in Canberra.  We are on our final day of sessions and it has been fantastic to be able to speak with so many members as they have interacted with the tax profession’s best practitioners.

We have also been enjoying keynote speeches from the core disciplines of law, public administration, business and politics.  These have included: The Hon. Robert French AC, Chief Justice of the High Court of Australia; Michael D’Ascenzo AO, Commissioner of Taxation; Chris Jordan AO, Chairman of the Board of Taxation; and The Hon Wayne Swan MP, Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer.

Whilst the content of the Convention is far too wide-ranging to summarise here, I just wanted to highlight some of the positive sentiments expressed this morning by the Treasurer, Wayne Swan.  The Treasurer made it clear that the Government is committed to a broader tax reform agenda, despite the economic challenges of the current climate.  A reform agenda must reward hard work and wealth creation, boost innovation, and lift competitiveness, productivity and participation.  Acknowledging that the tax system must change with the times, the Treasurer committed to continuing reform that recognises Australia’s strong revenue growth.

He also acknowledged the Government’s ongoing consultation with The Tax Institute on tax policy matters and described this as invaluable.  Whilst we have our disagreements, this is a natural part of true consultations.  The tax reform agenda will continue to be pursued in conjunction with The Tax Institute.

Please see below for details of other activities this week.


Robert Jeremenko FTIA

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