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Tuesday, 22 June 2010
Page: 6167

Ms LEY (7:42 PM) —I am pleased to speak on the Tax Laws Amendment (Confidentiality of Taxpayer Information) Bill 2009. This bill was introduced on 19 November 2009 and implements the reforms to the tax secrecy and disclosure provisions that were announced by the former coalition government. I would like to say at the outset that the coalition will support the passage of this bill through the House. Currently, the rules regarding the protection and disclosure of taxpayer information are contained in 20 different acts. This bill consolidates 18 of these provisions by rewriting the current 18 acts into one single act.

On 17 August 2006, the then Treasurer announced the release of a Treasury discussion paper called Review of taxation secrecy and disclosure provisions, in which it was proposed to rewrite the existing tax law provisions regarding the confidentiality and disclosure of taxpayer information into a single piece of legislation. At that time, the then Treasurer said that the reforms would provide increased certainty for taxpayers, tax officials and users of tax information such as government departments and agencies. Treasury then began to undertake an extensive process of public consultation with a wide range of stakeholders, including professional associations, government agencies, business groups and taxpayers.

Madam Deputy Speaker May, I apologise to the House. I appear to have the incorrect bill. I take full responsibility for that. The bill before us is the Tax Laws Amendment (2010 Measures No. 3) Bill 2010. The provisions are contained in detail in the explanatory memorandum, which I am seeking. I apologise for the inconvenience to the House. I seek leave to address the House on the other bill afterwards.

Leave granted.