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Wednesday, 15 June 2011
Page: 2797


Senator CORMANN (Western Australia) (10:21): The coalition supports the International Tax Agreements Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2011. Schedule 1 to the bill amends the International Tax Agreements Act 1953 to modify and streamline its structure. The act will be shortened by omitting almost all of the schedules to the act and instead incorporating treaties by reference to other accessible resources, principally, the Australian Treaties Series online database of treaties. This will substantially reduce the size of the act, and is a sensible housekeeping measure. Schedule 2 to this bill amends the International Tax Agreements Act 1953 to give the force of law in Australia to new taxation agreements with Aruba, Chile, the Cook Islands, Guernsey, Malaysia, Samoa and Turkey. The Aruba, Cook Islands, Guernsey and Samoa agreements cover the allocation of taxing rights and transfer pricing adjustments. The Chile, Malaysia and Turkey agreements cover the avoidance of double taxation and tax evasion. The legislation is representative of Australia's commitment to international agreements to avoid double taxation, codify tax allocations and combat international tax avoidance. As such, the coalition supports this bill.