Brickbats and bouquets for business tax cut plan

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has welcomed the prospect of a cut to the company tax rate in tomorrow night’s Federal Budget, while the Greens say it is “unfair”.

CCI chief executive James Pearson said it was important the Budget helped Australian businesses create wealth and jobs.

“The opposition, as well as the government, have recognised the importance, the value, and the benefit on Australian households and individuals from a reduction in the rate of tax paid by business,” he said.

“Australia recognises that it needs to make investments in Australian business more attractive, and a key way of doing that is by a reduction of the business tax rate towards 25 per cent.

“When we consider that Australian business accounts for around three quarters of all people employed in our country, it’s pretty obvious that making it easier for business to invest, to create wealth, and to create jobs makes a lot of sense, not just for business but for the people who work for business.”

Australian Greens leader senator Richard Di Natale said on his Facebook page this morning that it was “ridiculous” to consider a tax cut for businesses.

“It is ridiculous that the Liberal government is even considering tax breaks for big business when the Australian Tax Office has just released data that shows almost 100 of Australia’s richest private companies paid absolutely no company tax,” he said.

Mr Di Natale said it was the time to make big businesses pay their fair share of tax and not give them a “free ride”.

“Our Greens #BetterBudget would end unfair tax breaks for big business, big polluters and the very wealthy and raise revenue by reforming negative gearing, supperannuation and capital gains tax breaks so we can properly fund our schools, hospitals and infrastructure,” he said

Treasurer Scott Morrison has confirmed the Budget will include tax cuts for Australian business.

“This budget is all about jobs and growth, and backing in companies that are increasing employment and getting the job done,” he said in a statement this morning.

He said changes to the tax system would help companies re-invest in their businesses.

The Treasurer gave little else away, saying: “All of that will be revealed tomorrow night in the Budget.”