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Thursday, 24 May 2001
Page: 26976

Mr SLIPPER (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Finance and Administration) (10:23 AM) —I move:

That the bill be now read a second time.

The Excise Tariff Amendment Bill (No. 2) 2001 contains amendments to the Excise Tariff Act 1921.

On 1 March 2001, the Prime Minister announced a package of government measures to cut petrol and diesel fuel excise. As part of that package, the Prime Minister announced that legislation would be introduced in the parliament as soon as possible to abolish indexation of excise and customs duty for all petroleum fuels. These fuels include leaded and unleaded petrol, diesel, aviation fuels and burner fuels such as fuel oil, heating oil and kerosene.

The amendments in the bill give effect to the decision by the government by altering the indexation provisions of the Excise Tariff Act to exclude all petroleum fuel products from the application of the provisions, for the indexation period commencing on 1 August 2001 and any subsequent indexation period.

Complementary amendments for equivalent imported goods are contained in the Customs Tariff Amendment Bill (No. 3) 2001.

The automatic six-monthly indexation of excise was introduced in 1983 by the Hawke Labor government. Its abolition in respect of petroleum fuel products will be a significant discipline on governments now and into the future.

This measure comes in addition to the 6.7c per litre reduction in the excise on unleaded petrol on 1 July 2000, as well as the 1.5c per litre reduction announced by the Prime Minister on 1 March 2001.

Full details of the measure in the bill are contained in the explanatory memorandum.

I commend the bill to the House.

Debate (on motion by Mr McClelland) adjourned.