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Wednesday, 15 May 2013
Page: 3378


Mr KEENAN (Stirling) (11:06): I rise to speak on the Customs Tariff Amendment (Incorporation of Proposals) Bill 2013. I think I am the only speaker on this; I suspect that as future generations pore over the Hansard they will understand that this is probably not one of the more interesting or contentious bills that the parliament has dealt with today. The purpose of the bill is to amend the Customs Tariff Act 1995 to incorporate the measures contained in the tariff proposal which took effect on 1 March 2013. These amendments were recommended by both industry and through departmental feedback on the customs tariff bill that passed the parliament last year. The bill revises certain items in schedule 4 of the act by replacing them with clearer definitions and correcting typographical errors. Schedule 4 lists a variety of goods and circumstances for which concessional rates of import duty are granted.

Following a review of schedule 4 by the Better Regulation Ministerial Partnership, the Customs Tariff Amendment (Schedule 4) Act 2012 was passed by the parliament in 2012. This bill will incorporate minor amendments that were contained in a customs tariff proposal that was tabled in the House of Representatives on 14 February 2013. The items to be amended in schedule 4 are items 20, 21, 27, 30 and 35. The bill makes technical amendments to the Customs Tariff Act 1995 to specifically reference goods as part of a batch repair process in item 20, to remove reference to industrial processing in item 21, to remove reference to 'value' and 'amount' in item 27, to reinsert 'wheelchairs' and remove reference to 'invalid carriages' in item 30; reinsert 'tons' and remove reference to 'tonnes' in item 35.

The bill also streamlines the assessment of concessional duties in relation to goods imported for industrial processing and subsequent export. The proposed amendments will alter wording and fix typos in the bill so it is consistent with the intentions of schedule 4. This bill makes necessary minor amendments to the Customs Tariff Amendment (Schedule 4) Act 2012, and the coalition supports these amendments as uncontroversial.