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Monday, 25 October 2010
Page: 679

Senator LUDWIG (Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry) (7:55 PM) —I thank Senator Cormann for his contribution and for the opposition’s support for the International Tax Agreements Amendment Bill (No. 2) 2002. The government is committed to combating cross-border tax evasion. This bill will give the force of law to the second protocol to the Australia-Singapore tax treaty, which will upgrade the exchange of information provisions in that treaty to the internationally agreed tax standard. The enhanced exchange of information provisions in the second protocol to the Singapore tax treaty will allow the tax authorities of both countries to exchange information on a wider range of taxes in a wider range of circumstances. This will discourage taxpayers from participating in abusive tax arrangements by increasing the probability of detection, making it harder for taxpayers to evade Australian tax. I commend the bill to the Senate.

Question agreed to.

Bill read a second time.