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20 Jun 14 Preamble - 20 June 2014

On 19 June our President, Michael Flynn CTA, and National Council member, Prof Graeme Cooper CTA, joined me at the ATO’s National Tax Liaison Group meeting. 

The NTLG is the ATO’s peak consultative group on tax matters.  Recognising the importance of an efficient, well-designed and administered tax system to Australia’s economic and social well-being, the NTLG drives improvements to:  

  • tax law interpretation, administration, design and policy; 
  • confidence in and compliance with the tax system; and 
  • ATO service delivery. 

At this meeting, numerous matters were discussed, including:

  • Progress of Treasury’s tax and superannuation measures work program, including 2014-15 Budget announcements; 
  • Recent Treasury and ATO activities in relation to Australia’s 2014 Presidency of the G20;
  • The ATO’s plan to ‘reinvent’, including focus on the strategic intent, vision and mission statement; 
  • Project DO-IT (the current offshore voluntary disclosure initiative);
  • Tax System ‘Systemic Drivers of Change’;
  • Concerns in relation to ATO’s compliance action on dividend washing;
  • ATO use of external auditors for compliance assurance;  
  • Consultation on statutory remedial powers for the Commissioner; 
  • Red-tape reduction initiatives;
  • Capacity for increased use of safe harbours to decrease compliance costs in low risk areas; 
  • Identifying opportunities to streamline the ATO’s information collection activities;
  • External input into the ATO’s contribution to tax policy and law design; and
  • ATO approach to test case litigation. 

The minutes from this meeting should be available on the ATO website in the coming weeks. I would be happy to discuss any of the above with interested members; please be in touch via

Kind regards

Robert Jeremenko CTA