Ensaluto

Business not happy with Swan cut

The federal government's surprise decision to axe a corporate tax cut seems to have further damaged its relationship with the big end of town.

Treasurer Wayne Swan's fifth federal budget on Tuesday revealed the government has reneged on the planned one percentage point cut and will divert most of the money to low and middle-income families.

Welfare groups mostly welcomed the extra Replica Watches funding for families, but business groups described the decision as a low blow.

About half of some 1.5 million lower-income families will get a $600 a year boost in what the government calls the Spreading the Benefits of the Boom scheme.

The government linked its decision to the coalition's rejection of the company tax cut because it would have been paid for with revenue from the mining tax.

Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) chief executive Peter Anderson says the decision to abandon the company tax cut is dripping with politics and a low blow to the business sector.

"That is a $400 million hit to the Australian business community which is then redistributed to broader society in a way that will not necessarily provide the economic kick and the spreading of the benefits of the mining boom that the government has promised," he told reporters in Canberra.

Mr Anderson said the 2012/13 budget was also a lost opportunity for the government to suspend the $24 per tonne carbon emissions tax, which begins on July 1, and is expected to push up costs for businesses and households.

Australian Industry Group chief Innes Willox said the decision to scrap the corporate tax cut was disappointing.

"This will be a hard blow for business to take," he told reporters.

The Tax Institute says Australian companies have been "abandoned" by the government.

"The Henry tax review made it clear that a company tax rate in the order of 25 per cent should be Australia's medium-term target, so it is extremely disappointing that the government has given up on achieving a modest cut to a 29 per cent rate," institute president Ken Schurgott said.

The ACTU said the union movement was largely pleased with the budget, with families getting a helping hand.

"Family benefits to low-income earners will go a long way to helping working people," president Ged Kearney said.

But the ACTU was disappointed that "single mums have been targeted in welfare cuts", she said.

Unions were also disappointed at the large number of cuts to public service jobs, as departments sought to meet an increase in the whole-of-government efficiency dividend.

Ms Kearney said the government should be prepared to revisit its 2012/13 budget surplus goal if economic circumstances changed.

The Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) said the budget measures would make the tax system fairer but single-parent families would suffer.

The poorest sole parents would be $60 a week worse off, ACOSS chief executive Cassandra Goldie said.

"This budget reduces supports and tax breaks for those that need them least and strengthens them for those that need them the most," Ms Goldie said in a statement.

"The surplus could have been achieved without leaving some of the most disadvantaged families and their children in deficit."

bildo de Anonime


povigita de