MIDLAND business owner and Swan Chamber of Commerce member Eddie Peters has launched a new campaign to lobby the Federal Government over the goods and services tax threshold.
Mr Peters said the Swan Chamber of Commerce would call on politicians Australia-wide to scrap the GST-free threshold on overseas imports up to $1000 immediately.
“We are fed up with waiting for the government to scrap the unfair GST (free) threshold, which favours overseas companies and makes it so hard for us all to compete and survive in our own country,” he said.
“This inequity has to be scrapped immediately. Australia and Australian jobs must come first.”
The “We Can’t Wait” campaign will urge politicians from all backgrounds to support small business across Australia.
“There are more than 2 million business owners in Australia and we urge them to join our campaign to urge the Federal Government to scrap the threshold on overseas imports as a matter of urgency,” Mr Peters said.
Swan Chamber of Commerce president Gerry Hanssen said the chamber already had the support of the Australian Retailers Association, the Cycling Industry, Small Business Association and other business associations affected by the threshold.
“We want the GST threshold reversed immediately so local businesses can thrive and survive, employ more Australians and be on a level playing field with overseas businesses,” Mr Hanssen said.
“This country can’t afford to lose any more small businesses, the leading employers for Australian jobs.
“And we simply can’t wait until July 1, 2017, for the change.
“It has to happen immediately or no later than July 1, 2016.”
Business owners estimate Australia has lost billions in GST revenue because overseas sales of imports have been cheaper.
Mr Hanssen said a press conference at the Swan Chamber offices in Midland today would outline how the GST could be collected at no cost to the Federal Government.
Mr Peters said business owners were at the crossroads, with many facing closure unless the GST could be collected from all overseas businesses selling to Australians immediately.
“Local business has struggled and many are at the end of their life unless this problem can be reversed soon,” he said.