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Thursday, 18 June 2020
Page: 4903


Mr SUKKAR (DeakinAssistant Treasurer and Minister for Housing ) (10:06): Thank you to the shadow minister for his contribution and support of the important measures contained in this bill. The Morrison government continues to back small business by extending the $150,000 instant asset write-off for six months to 31 December 2020. For most small businesses, indeed, for most Australians that will be seen by them as the centrepiece of the Treasury Laws Amendment (2020 Measures No. 3) Bill.

Schedule 1 of the bill, as has been noted by the shadow minister, makes important amendments to the International Monetary Agreements Act and will enable Australia to enter into loan agreements with the IMF, following changes to the way that they will be administering requests for that assistance.

Schedule 2 of the bill, as the shadow minister finished up with, includes a number of deductible gift recipients, including for, as I'm sure many members around the House know, Toy Libraries Australia, an important institution that covers this country from top to bottom; the Samuel Griffith Society; and, of course, the Friends of Myall Creek Memorial.

Schedule 3 of the bill amends the International Monetary Agreements Act to remove the requirement for the IMF to directly request assistance for a third country, as those requests are no longer made. This change will ensure that Australia can take its rightful place as a leader, particularly in the Pacific, in supporting third countries that are very close to us.

As I began at the outset, schedule 4 contains the extension to the $150,000 instant asset write-off to 31 December 2020 for businesses with aggregated turnover of less than $500 million. Eligible businesses will have, therefore, additional time to invest in assets to support their business as they begin emerging from the coronavirus, and we would absolutely encourage them to take those decisions as we move out of the worst of the pandemic. They should have the confidence to take those decisions, and this will assist them to do so.

Schedule 5 to the bill suspends the indexation of tax instalment amounts based on historical nominal GDP outcomes. It is self-evident that the economy and the impact of the coronavirus means that providing that cash-flow support through removing indexation will be so important to so many businesses, particularly small and medium enterprises. This will obviously better align the PAYG system with the current economic conditions.

Schedule 6 to the bill makes some very minor amendments to the cash-flow boost legislation, which seeks to clarify that the cash-flow boost credit includes amounts of personal services income that have been withheld. That is consistent with our understanding and policy and ensures that the legislation provides the commissioner with the ability to administer the cash-flow boost in that way. We thank the opposition for their support of the bill and we commend the bill to the House.

Question agreed to.

Bill read a second time.

Message from the Governor-General recommending appropriation announced.