A leading retail body is calling on the federal and state governments to consider the impacts of new taxes on consumers and businesses, as many begin 2012 budget discussions.
The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is urging the government to assess the effect new taxes and charges will have on the retail sector, before implementing them as part of upcoming budgets.
ARA executive director Russell Zimmerman said the government can relieve the pressure felt by the retail sector by “not just holding off on taxation, charges and excise increases outside inflation but also by cutting the burden on consumers and retailers.”
“Consumer confidence can only be maintained if consumers have cash in their pockets, which means the ARA is urging government to do its bit not to increase the cost of living through additional taxes and charges as federal and state budget considerations commence.”
Zimmerman cited recent research from the Australian Industry Group and Commonwealth Bank Consumer survey as evidence the retail sector is undergoing significant structural change and being impacted by continued declining consumer confidence.
“At the end of the day a business needs to make money before it pays tax. To make money it is vital for consumers to have money in their pockets to spend,” he said.
“With the sector vulnerable, now is not the time for governments to undertake tax grabs or impose sneaky revenue hikes through changes or excise increases above the inflation rate.”