Articles on GST: the evidence

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Political, not legal hurdles, stand in the way of the Australian Prime Minister increasing the GST. Lukas Coch/AAP

Why the Commonwealth can change the GST without the states

Under Australian law, changes to the GST are said to be not permitted unless the states agree to the changes. In reality, the GST lock-in mechanism is legally meaningless and unenforceable, though it may…
History tells us it’s better for countries to get their GST right to start with, rather than try to broaden the base later. Natalie Boog/AAP

What can other countries teach us about GST reform?

Value added tax (VAT), virtually non-existent before 1960, has been the predominant form of consumption tax since the mid-1980s. Given that more than 160 countries now have a VAT, it is hardly surprising…
Many stubbornly believe a bigger pot of GST revenues, like the magic pudding, will regenerate. PeraCultured/Flickr

Selling a GST rise will be easier if we can follow the money

Australia’s latest GST debate may be the political version of The Magic Pudding. We stubbornly believe that a bigger pot of GST revenues will regenerate – in whatever flavour is desired – like Alfred the…
Shifting the tax burden to wage earners in the middle is a costly and outdated approach to tax reform. Dave Hunt/AAP

Expanding the GST would hit the ‘middle’ and women the hardest

Many developed economies have experienced a significant increase in inequality in recent decades. Survey data for Australia show that the share of the top 10% of the income distribution, and more markedly…
Australia’s GST is considered a regressive tax, so the idea of extending it to fresh food is considered unfair. A more detailed analysis reveals it’s not that simple. Charlotte90T/Flickr

Making the case for GST on fresh food

With the federal government’s review of taxation about to get underway, many are expecting Australia’s Goods and Services Tax to be up for change. In this GST series we take a closer look at the evidence…

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