Australian Taxation Office
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Royal Assent to Bills
The Customs Amendment (China-Australia Free Trade Agreement Implementation) Bill 2015 and Customs Tariff Amendment (China-Australia Free Trade Agreement Implementation) Bill 2015, which together implement the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement, received Royal Assent yesterday.
Progress of Bills in Parliament
- Tax Laws Amendment (Combating Multinational Tax Avoidance) Bill 2015, which proposes to give effect to a package of measures announced in the 2015-16 Federal Budget to combat multinational tax avoidance, was passed by the Senate yesterday with additional amendments from the Australian Greens. The amendments (which are in addition to those agreed to on Tuesday) seek to repeal the recently passed (but not yet enacted) Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (Better Targeting the Income Tax Transparency Laws) Act 2015, which excludes Australian-owned private companies from the tax transparency measures, and instead provide the Commissioner of Taxation with the discretion to exclude Australian-owned private companies from the transparency measures where he is satisfied that to make the information publicly available may be significantly prejudicial to any of the entity’s current or future commercial negotiations. The Bill will now return to the House of Representatives for consideration of all amendments made in the Senate. This is not scheduled to occur today.
- Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Legislation Amendment Bill 2015, which seeks to strengthen the integrity of Australia's foreign investment framework, was debated in the Senate. Debate was adjourned. The other two related Bills (Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Fees Imposition Bill 2015, which proposes to introduce fees on all foreign investment applications, and Register of Foreign Ownership of Agricultural Land Bill 2015, which complements these changes by establishing a register of foreign ownership of agricultural land operated by the ATO) were passed by the Senate without amendments, and now await Royal Assent.
New Bills introduced this morning
The following Bills have been introduced into the House of Representatives this morning:
- Treasury Legislation Amendment (Repeal Day 2015) Bill 2015, which proposes to:
- simplify the superannuation guarantee (SG) charge by aligning the earnings base for calculating the SG charge with the earnings base for calculating SG contributions, aligning the interest component on any SG shortfall with the period over which the contributions are outstanding, and replace the SG charge penalty with the administrative penalty applied under the Taxation Administration Act 1953(effective from 1 July 2016)
- enable the Commissioner of Taxation to pay certain superannuation amounts directly to individuals with a terminal medical condition and remove the requirement for superannuation funds to lodge a separate biannual lost members statement (effective from 1 July 2016)
- amend the tax law to remove a number of inoperative or spent provisions including the tax-exempt infrastructure borrowing concession.
- Omnibus Repeal Day (Spring 2015) Bill 2015, which proposes to repeal inoperative Acts and provisions and make a number of consequential amendments to other Acts so as to remove references to those inoperative Acts.
- Tax Laws Amendment (Gifts) Bill 2015, which proposes to update the list of specifically listed deductible gift recipients.