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Mr Della Bosca's views on the GST.

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Mr Della Bosca's Views On The GST Kim Beazley - Leader of the Opposition

Media Statement - 11 July 2000

Mr Della Bosca is wrong on the GST.

Many Australians have accepted the fact of the GST's introduction - but have not accepted that it should stay as it is.

Today's AC Neilsen poll shows that the overwhelming majority of Australians believe that the GST should be changed.

The community wants the GST to be made fairer and simpler. Labor intends to do just that through rollback.

This is the unanimous view of the Federal Parliamentary Labor Party and of the National Policy Committee which developed the draft platform for consideration at the ALP National Conference at the end of this month.

It is the policy that will be endorsed at the National Conference.

Labor particularly rejects the view that the GST should be rolled forward to include food. That's John Howard and Peter Costello's policy and they will do it if given the chance. This is what John Howard said at the start of the year: "I mean I think the GST should cover just about everything. And you'll remember that that was our original idea."

As to the assessment that the GST is "going to be a bit of a Y2K", two things are already clear at this early stage of the GST's introduction: the burden of the GST will fall on those least able to afford it, and who have not been properly compensated - middle and low income families and older Australians; and the adjustment burden is falling more heavily on small business than it is on large corporations. These issues will not come and go as did Y2K.

Authorised by Geoff Walsh, 19 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600.