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Australia upfront in the information economy.

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SENATOR THE HON IAN CAMPBELL Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts Manager of Government Business in the Senate

Media Release

Australia Upfront in the Information Economy Australia's reputation as a leading new economy continues to grow, Senator Ian Campbell, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts, said today at the launch of new portal created by the Taxation Institute of Australia (TIA) and its Australian technology partner, Solution 6.

'Australia is not simply keeping pace with rapid change in the information economy-but in many areas is leading the way,' Senator Campbell said.

'This new portal,, is an initiative that complements the Government's long-standing, world-leading commitment to put all appropriate Government services online by 2001, made in the Prime Minister's 1997 Investing for Growth statement.'

The Federal Government was guided by strong industry support toward its Government Online Strategy-a national action framework for pursuing more cooperative, high value online service initiatives to strengthen Australia's position in the information economy.

' is an example of the leading edge resources being developed in Australia,' said Senator Campbell.

'Thanks to this new portal, tax professionals across Australia, particularly in regional and rural Australia, will now be able to update themselves on the latest developments in taxation legislation and policy from the comfort and convenience of their desk, or where ever they choose,' said Senator Campbell.

'One of the key benefits for more than 35,000 tax practitioners is the ability to maintain their accreditation online-a task which previously required 30 hours of activity away from their businesses.

'Australia's top-tier position in the information economy is strengthened by the

development of online processes and initiatives in the public and private spheres.'

The Australian Tax Office has also developed an innovative e-commerce initiative in conjunction with the New Tax System to enable businesses to transact with the Government and pay their tax online.

'This system is a world-leader in the use of digital signatures to authenticate businesses to transact with the Government online. Almost 275,000 digital signatures have been issued and over 55,000 businesses have logged in,' said Senator Campbell.

'Nations such as the UK and Canada are watching the ATO's systems closely, further cementing Australia's position as a leading-edge nation in the Information Age.'

Senator Campbell said that is a generation ahead of comparable services anywhere else in the world.

'Australia's place in the Information Age is not about whether we produce silicon chips or plastic boxes. It's about what we do with them - developing new applications and value-add services,' concluded Senator Campbell.

Media contact: Georgia-Kate Schubert: Senator Campbell's office,

02 6277 3955 or 0419 265234


10 October 2000

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