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Tilting Australia towards exports

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Ian McLachlan Media Release Shadow M inister for Industry and Commerce



The Coalition's FIGHTBACK! package was overwhelmingly aimed at tilting the business 'playing field* in favour of exporters, Shadow Minister for Industry and Commerce Ian McLachlan said today.

*The Coalition's proposals to remove $20 billion of business input taxes, including the wholesale sales tax, payroll tax and fuel excise will totally remove major tax imposts on exporters and industrial relations reforms will allow exporters to pursue more efficient and flexible working arrangements.'

Mr McLachlan was addressing a meeting of the South Australian Exporters' Association and the Australian Institute of Exports in Adelaide.

'The fact is th at if we want efficient export-oriented industries there is just no alternative. ,

'Continuing to take the $20 billion in taxes and then generously handing a few billion of it back to a lucky few and calling it 'industry policy'- as the current Government is doing - is not an option because exporters are still burdened, upĀ­

front, with excessive costs.'

Mr McLachlan challenged business to assess the impact of the Coalition's proposals and to compare it with what they faced now.

'From my own case studies the results are quite astonishing and auger well for Australia's export potential.'

Mr McLachlan said that the recent diversion created by the Prime Minister about tariff reductions created dangers for exporters because it diverted attention from the real issues of industry competitiveness.

'For a start exporters bear the cost of import protection and manufacturing exporters more so than any other exporters. But even more importantly the resurrected debate will turn attention away from the need for tax cuts and other reforms which are absolutely essential if Australia is to make its way in an increasingly competitive world.

T he Coalition however is determined to do what is right for exporters and therefore what is right for Australia,' Mr McLachlan concluded.

16 April 1992 ADELAIDE