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Thursday, 24 May 2001
Page: 26976


Mr SLIPPER (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Finance and Administration) (10:28 AM) —I move:

That the bill be now read a second time.

The purpose of this bill is to amend the Passenger Movement Charge Act 1978 (as amended) to increase the rate of the Passenger Movement Charge (the charge) by $8, to $38, with effect from 1 July 2001. The increase was announced by the Treasurer in the 2001-02 budget and will fund increased passenger processing costs as part of Australia's response to the threat of the introduction of foot and mouth disease.

The charge, which is imposed on the departure of a person from Australia, is collected by airlines and shipping companies at the time of ticket sales and then remitted to the Commonwealth in accordance with arrangements entered into under section 10 of the Passenger Movement Charge Collection Act 1978. These arrangements are extremely beneficial to all stakeholders, not the least being the passenger whose departure from Australia is unimpeded through a seamless process which does not require the payment of taxes at Australian international airports.

Current arrangements are due to expire on 30 June 2001 and the government is negotiating with interested parties for new arrangements to apply from 1 July 2001 to 30 June 2004.

I commend the bill to the House and present the explanatory memorandum.

Debate (on motion by Mr McClelland) adjourned.