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SMEs want GST left alone

tax, GSTAlmost three quarters of small businesses would not support an increase in the rate of GST, even if it resulted in lower corporate and income taxes.

A survey by accounting firm Bentleys found that many small and medium sized businesses believe a GST increase would increase their tax burden.

Bentleys chairman, Nick Storer, said tax and compliance issues were a considerable concern to SMEs and in some cases are hindering growth and employment.

“It is vital that many areas of tax legislation – such as payroll and superannuation requirements – are made simpler and more consistent to foster business,” he said.

The survey also found around six in 10 SMEs (58 per cent) thought a GST should be applied to purchases from overseas companies.

In a ruling going back to when the 10 per cent GST was introduced in 2000 and internet shopping was less prolific, GST only applies to imported goods valued at more than $1000.

The survey of 238 SMEs found that half supported the Abbott government’s repeal of the carbon tax, but slightly less (41 per cent) supported the scrapping of the mining tax.

The minerals resource rent tax repeal package included removing a number of business tax concessions specifically aimed at small business.

The government has promised a small business package that will include a 1.5 per cent tax cut to be detailed in the run up to the May budget.


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