a dump truck a dumping
Creative Commons License photo credit: yewenyi

“The mismanagement of both the federal tax powers and Australia’s natural assets by the Gillard government is sickening,” Prosper Australia Campaign Manager David Collyer said today. “They are allowing the miners to gouge our country twice.”

“Treasury modelling estimated the new mining tax negotiated by the Gillard government will bring in $100 billion less over the next ten years than the Resources Super Profits Tax originally proposed in Australia’s Future Tax System (the Henry Review).”

“Australia as a nation is $100 billion poorer because of our weak federal government. Citizens’ taxes will be that much higher or government services that much less.

Prosper supports The Greens’ push for the RSPT – a fair and economically responsible mining tax regime.

“The ALP government was deeply frightened by the role miners played in the sudden sacking of Prime Minister Rudd when he first announced the RSPT. They have not yet recovered their poise.

“The Liberal/National Party opposition’s rejection of a quality mining tax shows they favor taxing struggling small business over capturing some of the economic rents of the most profitable industry sector in the world.

“We have outgrown the myth that miners are grizzled prospectors panning lonely creeks for specks of gold. Modern mines are major engineering and logistics exercises. And even with the billions in investment, it employs very few people.

“Our government is absolutely entitled – on taxpayers’ behalf – to part of nature’s bounty that now goes almost entirely to miners. These resources are not renewable. Once dug up and exported they are gone forever.”

A global decline in iron-ore grades points to limited supply of the highest quality reserves and windfall gains for owners of these mining leases.

“The mining lobby can spend millions of dollars on TV advertising to sway public opinion, but this does not diminish the profound economic virtue of the RSPT.

“Governments and taxpayers worldwide are watching Australia’s debate on the best way to oblige miners to pay for what they take. The RSPT, by taxing at the EBIDTA level, shares the once-only profits with their owner – the Commonwealth of Australia, otherwise known as you and me,” Collyer concluded.

Contact: David Collyer david.collyer@prosper.org.au