Federal Parliament concluded its Autumn sittings on 28 March 2018, with a number of tax and superannuation related Bills introduced into Federal Parliament. It will next sit on 8 May 2018, which is also the day on which the 2018-19 Federal Budget will be handed down.
Since the March edition of TaxTalk Monthly, the following tax or superannuation related Bills were introduced into the House of Representatives on 28 March 2018:
- Treasury Laws Amendment (OECD Multilateral Instrument) Bill 2018, which contains amendments to the International Tax Agreements Act 1953 (Cth) to give force of law in Australia to the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting.
- Medicare Levy Amendment (Excess Levels for Private Health Insurance Policies) Bill 2018 together with the Private Health Insurance Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 and A New Tax System (Medicare Levy Surcharge—Fringe Benefits) Amendment (Excess Levels for Private Health Insurance Policies) Bill 2018, which seek to increase the maximum voluntary excess levels for private health insurance products providing individuals an exemption from the Medicare levy surcharge.
- Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Measures No. 4) Bill 2018, which proposes to implement measures to strengthen compliance with taxation and superannuation guarantee obligations, enable the sharing and verification of tax file numbers, make a number of miscellaneous amendments to taxation, superannuation and other laws, and allow certain entities to be deductible gift recipients (DGRs) under income tax law.
- Corporations Amendment (Asia Region Funds Passport) Bill 2018, which aims to provide a multilateral framework that allows eligible funds to be marketed across economies participating in the Asia Region Funds Passport (ARFP) with limited additional regulatory requirements.
- Treasury Laws Amendment (Tax lntegrity and Other Measures) Bill, which proposes a number of amendments to income tax law, including the previously announced small business integrity measures, extends the application of the Multinational Anti-avoidance Law (MAAL) to arrangements involving trusts and partnerships, and ensures that the venture capital tax concessions can apply to fintech investments.
- Customs Amendment (Illicit Tobacco Offences) Bill 2018, which proposes to amend the Customs Act 1901 (Cth) to create two new offences in respect of imported illicit tobacco based on recklessness; and allow Customs officers to investigate certain new illicit tobacco offences.
Commonwealth revenue measures registered as legislative instruments or regulations since the March edition of TaxTalk Monthly include:
· The following guidelines and instruments in relation to Export Market Development Grants:
– Export Market Development Grants (Information and Document Requirements) Instrument 2018. This instrument details the information and documents which must be provided by certain applicants concerning its export performance measure, for the purposes of paragraphs 70(2C)(f) and (g) of the Export Market Development Grants Act 1997 The Instrument is made to repeal and replace the Export Market Development Grants (Information and Document Requirements) Determination 2008, which is due to sunset on 1 October 2018. The Guidelines apply when working out entitlement to a grant in respect of a grant made on or after 1 July 2018.
– Export Market Development Grants Regulations 2018, which repeal and replace the Export Market Development Grants Regulations 2008 (due to sunset on 1 October 2018). The Regulations are the same in substance as the Export Market Development Grants Regulations 2008, with the exception of three redundant provisions which have been removed. The Regulations apply when calculating entitlement to a grant in respect of an application for a grant made on or after 1 July 2018.
· Treasury Laws Amendment (Reducing Pressure on Housing Affordability Measures No. 1) Regulations 2018, which amends tax regulations to support the measures introduced by the Treasury Laws Amendment (Reducing Pressure on Housing Affordability Measures No. 1) Act 2017 (Cth). In particular, the Regulations make changes to prescribe the withholding amount applicable to the First Home Super Saver Scheme released amounts, and ensure that superannuation entities are able to accept downsizer contributions.
- Petroleum Excise (Prices) Regulations 2018, which sets out the manner in which the price of crude petroleum oil and condensate is determined for the purposes of imposing excise under the Excise Tariff Act 1921. The Regulation remakes and improves the Petroleum Excise (Prices) Regulations 1988, which sunset on 1 April 2018. The new regulations are not intended to affect the substantive meaning or operation of the Petroleum Excise (Prices) Regulations 1988. The key changes include the consolidation of defined terms in a single section for ease of reference, and the reference to provisions as sections rather than regulations.
It is also worth noting that the following key tax Bills have now completed their passage through Parliament:
- Treasury Laws Amendment (Income Tax Consolidation Integrity) Bill 2018, which proposed various changes to improve the integrity and operation of the tax consolidation regime by implementing a range of measures relating to deductible liabilities, deferred tax liabilities, securitised assets, cost setting for foreign owned groups (‘anti-churn’ rules) and intra-group assets and liabilities. For further information on the key aspects of the Bill, refer to our TaxTalk Alert, which was published on 16 February 2018.
- Treasury Laws Amendment (2018 Measures No. 1) Bill 2018, which extends the loss relief and asset roll-over for merging superannuation funds until 1 July 2020, and which will require (from 1 July 2018) purchasers of new residential premises and new subdivisions of potential residential land to make a payment of part of the purchase price representing the goods and services tax directly to the Australian Taxation Office.
- Treasury Laws Amendment (Junior Minerals Exploration Incentive) Bill 2017, which introduces the Junior Minerals Exploration Incentive (JMEI) for those who invest in small minerals exploration companies undertaking greenfields minerals exploration in Australia.