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Wednesday, 20 March 2013
Page: 2737


Mr CLARE ( Blaxland Minister for Home Affairs, Minister for Justice and Cabinet Secretary ) ( 11:10 ): I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

The Customs Tariff Amendment (Incorporation of Proposals) Bill 2013 contains several amendments to schedule 4 to the Customs Tariff Act 1995.

Schedule 4 lists a range of goods and circumstances for which concessional rates of import duty are granted.

Following a review of the schedule by the Better Regulation Ministerial Partnership, the Customs Tariff Amendment (Schedule 4) Act 2012 was passed by the parliament in 2012. This act commenced on 1 March 2013.

This bill makes minor amendments to this act and were previously given effect through the tabling of Customs Tariff Proposal (No. 1) 2013 in the House of Representatives on 14 February 2013.

The items to be amended are items 20, 21, 27, 30 and 35 in the revised schedule 4.

The amendments fix typos or change wording so it is consistent with the intentions of the schedule, and have come about from both industry and interdepartmental feedback on the bill that passed last year.

The changes include:

Item 20. This item combines previous items 20A and 20B. New item 20 applies to goods exported for repair or renovation, subject to certain conditions. Old item 20B applied specifically to goods subject to a batch repair process.

However, the term 'batch repair' was not specifically mentioned in the new item 20, thus leading to confusion as to whether goods subject to a batch repair process have access to the concession or not. The bill will amend item 20 to specifically reference 'batch repair' in the item.

Item 21. This item previously applied to goods imported for repair, alteration or industrial processing that are to be exported having undergone one or more of these processes.

Following consultation with the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science, Research and Tertiary Education, this bill will remove the term 'industrial processing' from item 21. This amendment will better reflect Australian government policy that encourages all goods imported for industrial processing and subsequent exportation to use the Tradex Goods Scheme under item 21A of schedule 4. Goods specified in a Tradex order under the Tradex Scheme Act 1999 can then be better recorded and monitored for industry assistance purposes.

Item 27. New item 27 originally applied to 'Samples, as prescribed by by-law, whose value is less than the amount prescribed by by-law'.

The bill will give effect to an amendment that removes all references to 'value' and 'amount' from the item. This amendment will then allow the nature of representative sample goods that have access to this concession to be defined more clearly in the associated by-law(s).

Item 30. The text of item 30 was amended in the revised schedule 4 to replace the reference to 'invalid carriages' with 'wheelchairs', excluding other forms of invalid carriages, such as mobility scooters.

The bill will give effect to the amendment of item 30 that replaces 'wheelchairs' with 'invalid carriages', thus returning the item to its intended scope and application.

Item 35. This item applies to parts and materials for use in the construction, modification or repair of vessels exceeding 150 gross construction tons. The customs tariff calculates duty paid on vessels in accordance with the measurement 'gross construction tons'.

However, a typographical error was made in the drafting of item 35 which changed gross construction 'tons' to gross construction 'tonnes'. The bill will correct this.

I commend the bill the House.

Debate adjourned.