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Monday, 22 May 2017
Page: 4584


Mr SHORTEN (MaribyrnongLeader of the Opposition) (14:05): My question is to the Prime Minister. Is the bank tax which the government announced in its budget tax deductible for the big banks?

Mr TURNBULL (WentworthPrime Minister) (14:06): I am advised that it will be a deduction for the banks as an expense that they have, but I ask the Treasurer to elaborate.

Honourable members interjecting

The SPEAKER: The member for Griffith. The member for Jagajaga is warned. Members on my left will cease interjecting.

Mr TURNBULL: I have answered it, but if you want some more the Treasurer—

The SPEAKER: I know it is Monday. The question has come from my left; I would have thought members on my left would like to hear the answer.

Mr MORRISON (CookTreasurer) (14:06): I thank the Prime Minister for the opportunity to add to the answer. That is the case—it is deductible as a business expense. I note that those opposite in recent days have been running the lines of the banks in support of their position. I have heard the shadow Treasurer—he does not know we know this—quoting bank executives who have turned up to functions with him and he has just gone out there and run the lines for them. What we know is that when it comes to ensuring we have a fair tax on our largest banks what you do not do is go and tax pensioners' bank accounts, which is what those opposite did when they put forward a measure—and that was not the right measure. What we have put forward in this budget is the right measure. We do not go out there, as the shadow Treasurer sought to do, and tax pensioners' bank accounts. We exclude that, as we rightly should. This is a fair measure, it is a well-constructed measure and it will be introduced into this place in this sitting fortnight.