Australian mining magnate and independent MP call for mining tax summit

22:34, September 02, 2010      

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Australian mining magnate Andrew Forrest and key independent Member of Parliament (MP) Rob Oakeshott on Thursday jointly called for a summit to re-examine the controversial mining tax.

Fortescue boss Forrest, who has been a vocal opponent of Prime Minister Julia Gillard's redesigned minerals resource rent tax ( MRRT), said in a statement the pair had discussed "broad tax reform through a taxation summit" and there should be a "full and open public discussion" on the matter.

"This would allow Australians to have a constructive, open and positive discussion about tax reform through the summit Oakeshott has recommended," Forrest said.

The call for a tax summit came after a meeting between the pair and independent MP Tony Windsor in Canberra on Thursday, as the three independent MPs who hold the balance of power decide which of the two main parties to back in forming a minority government.

Forrest vigorously campaigned against the Australian Labor Party's resource super-profits tax and also opposes Labor's redesigned mineral resources rent tax, which he believes hurts small to medium miners.

The decision to introduce a resource rent tax emerged from the Henry Tax Review, which was announced in the Labor government's first budget in 2008, and was intended to be a root-and-branch review of the nation's tax system.

From the 138 recommendations in the Henry Tax Review, the government adopted only four key proposals for changing the taxation system.

According to Australian Associated Press, Oakeshott said he believed it was important for the Henry Review to be revisited, and that there be a more open and public discussion of taxation, including the MRRT.

Source: Xinhua


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