At a time when the gap between rich and poor is growing, the Australian Greens want to ensure we all get a fair share of Australia's prosperity. We have demonstrated our economic responsibility by supporting the Government in managing the global financial crisis, savings thousands of jobs and small businesses. We negotiated to improve the stimulus package including providing a $500m community jobs fund.
We strongly support a tax on the mining industry's super profits which if properly applied would generate revenue for the benefit of all Australians into the future. Along with many respected economists we support a sovereign wealth fund being established from the proceeds of the mining boom to help address the two speed economy affecting many business and jobs in non-mining industries such as tourism and manufacturing.
The Australia Greens were instrumental in the most important economic reform in recent times, the Clean Energy Future package, which is a key step in transforming Australia's economy into a clean, zero carbon 21st century economy and seizing the opportunities of creating jobs and investment.
03 Oct 2011
Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown said today cutting the company tax rate to 25% for small business would be better than allowing businesses to claim against past losses.
"The so-called ‘tax carry-back' option being mooted by the Government is second-rate compared to the Greens' plans for companies," Senator Brown said in Hobart.
Tax carry-back would render company tax even more volatile, with collections dropping more in a downturn.
"Small business should be supported by amending the Government's mining tax package so that instead of big businesses having their corporate tax rate cut from 30 to 29%, small businesses would get a tax cut to 25%. This would be a revenue saver as well as providing a much bigger break for smaller companies," Senator Brown said.
"The Greens' small business tax cut plan is better because:
• it is concentrated on small companies that lack the market power of large businesses, and are often the source of innovation and train the next generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders, are more employment-intensive and bear disproportionate administrative costs of tax collection and regulations;
• it encourages and assists most small companies, not just some troubled companies;
• its cost to the budget is more predictable; and
• it avoids adding complexity to the tax system."
03 Oct 2011
29 Sep 2011
Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown spoke to reporters in Hobart about proposing a global financial transactions tax at next week's tax forum in Canberra; a more humane approach to asylum seekers; and Malaysian logging company Ta Ann. Senator Brown also wished Prime Minister Julia Gillard a very happy 50th birthday.
29 Sep 2011
The Australian Greens will take the European Commission's proposal for a financial transaction tax to next week's tax forum.
"In an era where global financial institutions have been supported by the public purse it is appropriate that a new tax be considered. The IMF has estimated that a tiny transaction tax could raise more than $200 billion each year," Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown said in Hobart today.
"The latest proposal overnight from the European Commission is for a rate of 0.1% on all transactions between institutions when at least one party is based in the EU. Derivative contracts would be taxed at a rate of 0.01% - this is 1 ten-thousandth," Senator Brown said.
"The EC's backing of long-held Greens' policy is an important breakthrough. It is critical that the initiative be seized on by governments around the world. A global financial transaction tax could be used to effectively end much of the world's poverty - providing funding for water, food production and education."
"Australia should propose the issue at the next G20 summit, so that the financial transaction tax can be presented as a global initiative and addressing the British government's concerns that for a tax to be effective it should be world-wide," Senator Brown said.
A submission supporting a financial transactions tax has also been sent to the tax forum by the Robin Hood Tax Australian Coalition.
28 Sep 2011
Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown today released new research showing that adding gold to the Labor Government’s proposed mining tax on coal and iron ore, as a minimum reform to that watered-down tax, would add $1.8 billion to government revenue over the next 10 years.
"Reflecting Australia’s status as the world’s second-largest producer of gold after China, if the original mining tax not been abandoned in 2010, gold would have contributed even more. This new report shows additional revenues from gold would have been about $8.2 billion over the next 10 years,” Senator Brown said today.
26 Sep 2011
The Labor Government and Opposition Coalition should adopt a more flexible and sensible stance on fiscal and monetary policy, Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.
"Andrew Robb has got it wrong in trying to strong-arm the Reserve Bank, compounding the Coalition's position of weakness in trying to argue for fiscal responsibility while presiding over a $70 billion black hole," Senator Brown said.
"However, the Government also needs to re-examine its politically charged return to surplus in 2012-13. I note that the Government's own fiscal strategy outlined today in Tax Forum: The Fiscal Content says ‘once the economy was growing above trend, return the budget to surplus'."
"If the world economic outlook continues to worsen Australia's growth would undoubtedly be affected, and the push for a surplus in 2012-13 would become even more questionable," Senator Brown said.
22 Sep 2011
Tasmania's lead Liberal Senator Eric Abetz told the Senate today that "we don't want this money spent in Tasmania", rebuffing the Intergovernmental Agreement delivering $276 million of federal money to Tasmania.
The Coalition was debating its own move to delay a vote on Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown's motion:
That the Senate condemns the Coalition for seeking to deny Tasmania $270 million of assistance for forestry transition.
"Senator Abetz's anti-Tasmanian stance has to be seen in the light of his general negativity to federal moves benefiting Tasmania," Senator Brown said.
22 Sep 2011
Australians should be able to have confidence in the promises made at election time by all sides of politics, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.
"The 1998 Charter of Budget Honesty provides an important transparency and accountability mechanism for Australian voters, but it fails if Joe Hockey carries through his threat that the Opposition will not submit their policies for costing," Senator Brown said in Canberra.
22 Sep 2011
Australian Greens Leader Bob Brown held a press conference to discuss the new Parliamentary Budget Office – costings should be mandatory so Australians are able to have confidence in election promises.
He also discussed the war in Afghanistan and the need to hold the government to an annual debate, and he reiterated the need to bring Australian troops home.
A range of questions were answered on topics including the Foster’s takeover; the Migration Act debate; lack of leadership in both major parties; and Palestine.