Realising Our Full Potential: Tax Directions for a Transitioning Economy

Australia needs comprehensive tax reform that brings the whole community along and delivers a tax system that works for all Australians.

The Business Council wants to steer that debate towards changes that will improve the living standards of all Australians by growing the size of the economy, not increasing taxes to fund ever-growing spending. It is about making changes to the tax system that will encourage investment, create new jobs and be fair. It’s about creating a tax system that helps the economy make the transition to a highly competitive, globalised, digital world.

The Business Council strongly believes that the tax system must be fair. The system overall must be progressive, that is, everyone must pay their fair share, according to their capacity to pay. Any changes must protect low-income earners and the most vulnerable people in the community. But fairness also means that people should not be penalised for effort and hard work. It means giving people the opportunity to work. 

This paper sets out a path for transforming the tax system to one better suited to Australia’s economic situation and future challenges. It sets out:

  • Australia's economic situation and the challenges we face as a nation
  • why our current tax system needs to change
  • the objectives and essential elements of a tax system that will promote growth, job creation and fairness
  • some options and possible directions for change
  • facts and analysis to help the government and the community navigate the impacts, benefits and risks and trade-offs of different options, including doing nothing.