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Wednesday, 23 May 2012
Page: 5223

Mr CLARE (BlaxlandMinister for Home Affairs, Minister for Justice and Minister for Defence Materiel) (10:05): I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

This bill amends the Passenger Movement Charge Act 1978 to increase the rate of the passenger movement charge by $8 to $55 per passenger. This will take effect from 1 July 2012.

The charge will also be indexed annually by movements in the consumer price index from 1 July 2013.

This increase was announced by the Treasurer in the 2012-13 budget.

The increase will fund the establishment of the Asia Marketing Fund that was also announced in the budget.

Sixty-one million dollars will be allocated to the fund, which is aimed at supporting the promotion of Australia to growing markets in Asia as a premium holiday and business travel destination.

It is estimated that, in less than a decade, there will be 100 million outbound travellers per annum from China alone. This fund will help promote Australia as a touring and business destination in this important market.

The passenger movement charge was increased in 1999, 2001 and 2008. Annual indexation of the charge will ensure the charge maintains pace with inflation. This is in line with a number of other charges levied by the Commonwealth. It will also provide certainty to the tourism industry about future increases.

The charge is mostly collected by airlines and shipping companies at the same time a ticket is sold, and remitted to the Commonwealth. The increase and future CPI increases will only apply to tickets sold on or after 1 July 2012.

I commend the bill to the House.

Debate adjourned.