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AGAINST – Bills — Treasury Laws Amendment (Making Multinationals Pay Their Fair Share — Integrity and Transparency) Bill 2023; Second Reading

Sue Lines

The time allotted for the consideration of the Treasury Laws Amendment (Making Multinationals Pay Their Fair Share—Integrity and Transparency) Bill 2023 has expired. I will first deal with the second reading amendments circulated by the opposition. The question is that the opposition's second reading amendment on sheet 2249 be agreed to.

Opposition's circulated amendment

At the end of the motion, add ", but the Senate:

(a) notes that:

(i) the former Coalition Government implemented more than a dozen measures to combat multinational tax avoidance including by:

(A) playing a leading role in the original OECD Base Erosion and Profit Shifting project, and committing to the OECD two-pillar solution to multinational tax, and

(B) introducing the Multinational Tax Avoidance Law; the Diverted Profits Tax; strengthening the thin capitalisation and transfer pricing rules; doubling penalties for multinational tax avoidance; and establishing the Tax Avoidance Taskforce,

(ii) despite promising to only raise taxes on multinationals at the election, the Labor Government have broken promises to:

(A) raise taxes on superannuation, unrealised capital gains and franking credits, and

(B) end small business tax incentives,

(iii) this bill introduces major tax changes that have not been subject to an appropriate public consultation, demonstrating yet again that Labor does not understand business and refuses to implement regulations and policies to support business, which then grow the economy and employ Australians,

(iv) the Senate Economics Legislation Committee heard evidence that the bill—far from being limited to multinationals and tax avoidance—will increase taxes on Australian companies, harm investment in Australian industries, and negatively affect housing affordability in Australia; and

(b) calls on the Government to withdraw Schedule 2 to the bill and undertake an appropriate consultation with industry and tax bodies to ensure the bill does not hurt Australians jobs, industries and businesses".

Question negatived.

Anne Ruston

by leave—Can I ask that the opposition's support for this amendment be recorded please.

Sue Lines

Thank you, Senator Ruston—and Senator Roberts? Thank you. I'll go to the second one. The question is that the opposition's second reading amendment on sheet 2274 be agreed to.

Opposition's circulated amendment

Omit all words after "That", substitute:

(a) the Senate notes that:

(i) the bill, as currently drafted, is not suitable for an industry like plantation forestry because the harvesting period for structural timbers used for buildings is between 30 to 50 years, and if passed this bill would damage the plantation forestry industry and prevent expansion significantly at time when a strong forestry industry is critical to relieving supply chain issues within the domestic construction industry and to our competitiveness internationally,

(ii) the third party debt test in the bill does not accommodate non-consolidated tax structures such as trusts, which are a common commercial vehicle, particularly in the property and infrastructure sector, and that in its current form the bill will impede the delivery of 150,000 new homes that could reduce rental costs for Australians, and

(iii) the bill, as currently drafted, favours industry superannuation funds over managed investment trusts, attribution managed investment trusts and corporate collective investment vehicles by exempting superannuation funds from the associate entity test, which is designed to determine whether an entity is subject to the thin capitalisation rules; and

(b) further consideration of the bill be postponed until the day after the Senate passes a resolution that it is of the opinion that each of the following conditions has been met:

(i) the Treasury has consulted with industry on the bill for a period of no less than three months and that consultation has appropriately considered:

(A) how the bill can be amended to account for the unique long-term nature of the plantation forestry sector, and

(B) how the third party debt test be amended to accommodate non-consolidated tax structures such as trusts to deliver more housing supply into the market, and

(ii) the Government has circulated amendments to the bill that either exempt similar funds from the associate entity test or removes the exemption for superannuation funds.

Question negatived.

Anne Ruston

by leave—Could I have the opposition's support for the amendment recorded, please.

Malcolm Roberts

by leave—I record my support.

Jacqui Lambie

by leave—I also put our support down for 2274. Thank you.

Sue Lines

The question is that the opposition's amendment on sheet 2292 be agreed to.

Opposition's circulated amendment—

Omit all words after "That", substitute:

(a) the Government amendments to the Treasury Laws Amendment (Making Multinationals Pay Their Fair Share—Integrity and Transparency) Bill 2023 on sheet RU100 be referred to the Economics Legislation Committee for inquiry and report by 5 February 2024; and

(b) further consideration of the bill be made an order of the day for the first sitting day after the committee has presented its report.

Summary

Date and time: 9:39 PM on 2023-12-05
Senator Pocock's vote: No
Total number of "aye" votes: 37
Total number of "no" votes: 17
Total number of abstentions: 22
Related bill: Treasury Laws Amendment (Making Multinationals Pay Their Fair Share—Integrity and Transparency) Bill 2023

Adapted from information made available by theyvoteforyou.org.au