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GST: self-funded retirees pay.

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Hon Gareth Evans QC MP Deputy Leader of the Opposition and Shadow Treasurer

GST: self-funded retirees pay

123/98 29 June 1998

Self-funded retirees can take no comfort from the Treasurer's evasiveness today on the impact of his GST on their savings.

Stubborn as ever, Peter Costello refused to reveal any details of his proposed compensation package. He would not comment on a story in Sunday's Sun Herald - a story with his own fingerprints all over it - which claimed he'd compensate lower income self-funded retirees with a one-off payment of $2,000.

No wonder he refuses to discuss the detail - because there is no way he can adequately compensate retirees for the damage a GST will do.

What is the point of a one-off compensation payment for GST price increases - when that payment runs out in a year or two. and the GST goes on forever?

The Treasurer refused to answer.

If that $2,000 were invested. generating interest income of around $100 a year, would it be anywhere near enough to compensate retirees for the $1000 or more the GST will cost them?

Again, no answer.

Self-funded retirees have paid income tax on everything they've earned all their lives. And now the Government wants them to pay a new tax on everything they buy with their savings.

As a talkback caller told me in Cairns recently:

"They got me coming - and now they've got me going".

Contact: Margot Marshall 0419 497 103