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Tuesday, 20 June 2017
Page: 4308


Senator CORMANN (Western AustraliaMinister for Finance and Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate) (13:14): That was a very unkind remark by Senator Gallagher. I have been extremely grateful for the great level of cooperation across the chamber. I think what the chamber has shown—and I include all parties in this, and all those represented in the chamber right now, in particular people like Senator Gallagher and, indeed, Senator Whish-Wilson—is that we have all been working together exceptionally well. I think we have shown up our colleagues in the House of Representatives on all sides of parliament, and I think that, as a Senate, we should be proud of the fact that we have proven that we can be more efficient in passing legislation through this place than our colleagues in the other place.

Specifically, in relation to the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Fees Imposition Amendment (Fee Streamlining and Other Measures) Bill 2017, I would like to thank Senator Gallagher for her contribution to this debate. This bill amends the Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Fees Imposition Act 2015 to implement a streamlined and simplified foreign investment fee framework. In particular, this bill gives effect to regulatory reforms that the government is undertaking to ensure the foreign investment framework for Australia is robust and that it operates efficiently. The amended fee framework will reduce complexity, achieve more equitable fee outcomes and minimise the regulatory burden on stakeholders. The changes are broadly revenue neutral, ensuring that foreign investors continue to meet the cost of funding the system. The fee framework will reduce the number of fee tiers for some categories and implement a standard fee for low-, medium- and high-value acquisitions, and I commend the bill to the Senate.

Question agreed to.

Bill read a second time.