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Thursday, 19 March 1987
Page: 972


Senator BOSWELL(12.41) —I rise to address the Taxation Laws Amendment Bill (No. 5) on provisional tax. I share Senator Sanders's concern for small business people, but I believe I understand the situation a little better than he does. He showed complete ignorance of what provisional tax is all about. I think most people would agree that with provisional tax one pays three months earlier and gets a nine months extension on next year's taxation. That is well recognised in small business circles. We find coming before the Senate yet again another tax Bill that falls most heavily on the group of people that this Government has made cannon fodder-the small business sector. This Bill takes $90m out of the small business sector and gives it to the Government.


Senator Watson —More than that.


Senator BOSWELL —I listened to the speech of the Tasmanian senator, Senator Watson. Obviously he understood it unlike Senator Sanders. When one adds the interest rates to the $90m, it certainly extends it somewhat. The $90m that the Government is saving is a transfer--


Senator Watson —It is $140m.


Senator BOSWELL —It is $140m. I thank the honourable senator. The $140m that the Government is saving comes out as a transfer from the small business sector, and probably the rural sector, although not too many rural people are paying tax. This Government purports to stand up for small business. I have never seen this Labor Government stand up for small business. It represents the big unions, big business and the public sector, but it certainly has no concern for small business. I do not know whether it is a case of the Government not understanding small business. I think that is the case sometimes. How can a government go to the people of Australia and say: `We want to take $140m out of the small business sector and put it into government'? I suppose that is socialism working in its truest way. It would be taking away from the people and giving to the Government. I suppose, on reflection, that is what the Labor Party is all about. It is a socialist government committed to the redistribution of wealth. Government members say that in their Party and they say it in the Senate. I suppose that makes then honest. That is what they are all about-taking out of the small business sector and giving--


Senator Watson —It is the highest taxing government in Australia.


Senator BOSWELL —It is the highest taxing government in Australia. We have had a capital gains tax--


Senator Watson —There is a new tax each week.


Senator BOSWELL —Yes, there is almost a new tax each week. We have had capital gains tax, tax on business investment and all types of other taxes in the last 12 months. Every increase in tax that comes in--


Senator Walsh —What about a VAT?


Senator BOSWELL —I have never mentioned VAT. It is not something with which the National Party is concerned. We are opposed to a value added tax and the National Party will never accept such a tax. So I do not want to hear any more reference to a value added tax. I seek leave to continue my remarks later.

Leave granted; debate adjourned.