FRINGE BENEFITS TAX — REGIONAL TOWNS
404. Hon ROBIN SCOTT to the Minister for Regional Development:
I refer to the cancerous fringe benefits tax imposed by
Canberra, affecting regional towns.
(1) Is the
government serious about encouraging mine workers and their families to return
to regional towns?
(2) Is the government
aware of the damage done by the fringe benefits tax to regional towns?
(3) What steps
has the government taken to persuade the federal government or the federal
opposition to commit to cancelling the unfair fringe benefits tax, which
artificially encourages fly in, fly out at the expense of regional towns?
(4) Is the
minister aware that Pauline Hanson's One Nation WA is committed to
removing the burden of fringe benefits tax from the mining, pastoral and
The PRESIDENT: Minister for
Regional Development, I think the last part of the question is probably out. I do
not think you can respond to that one.
ALANNAH MacTIERNAN replied:
I have been following with great
interest the travails of One Nation in the federal election. I have seen some
very interesting footage of candidates for that party.
have made a commitment to provide a submission to the Productivity Commission's
current inquiry into remote area tax concessions and payments. We think there
are issues that really need to be teased out. I note that there are some
positive developments that obviously we are encouraging. We have committed to
30 000 extra new jobs in the regions, and that is certainly a target that we
seek to fulfil by 2023–24. We note BHP's recent announcement
that it is now looking at drive in, drive out employment options for its
Eastern Ridge and Jimblebar operations, east of Newman. We are also very
encouraged from our discussions with Fortescue Metals Group that it is looking
at drive in, drive out options for its Iron Bridge project. We also note that
the potential Perdaman project is very much committed to act in the way that Yara Pilbara Fertilisers does—that
is, having the vast majority of its staff located in the region.