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Keating 'wimps out' on sales tax reform



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T im Fischer mr Federal Member for Farrer

Leader of the National Party of Australia

Shadow Minister for Energy and Resources

KEATING W IM PS O U T ON SALES TAX REFORM

Prime Minister, Paul Keating is in the process of kicking every exporter in the teeth with the reported decision to defer sales tax reform.

Tim Fischer, MP, Leader of the National Party said this today when speaking in Mackay.

"It is crass politics of the worst kind to be putting short-term political objectives ahead of reforming sales tax, boosting exports and creating jobs.

"Last year, Dr John Bell, Deputy Secretary of Senator Button's Department, formally stated that the current sales tax regime creates a 5% disadvantage for all exporters.

"This means the international playing field is tilted against our exporters by 5% plus - at great cost to the agricultural, mining and manufacturing sectors. This will be reversed under the Coalition's 'Fightback' Package.

"I might add there is no such thing as an international level playing field and Canberra needs to realise it.

"Paul Keating has 'wimped out1 on both the sales tax issue and the Medicare co-payment issue for the worst possible reasons associated with short-term political gain, when Australia needs strategic decision-making," Mr Fischer added.

Ends 13 February 1992

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