26 December 2014:The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) congratulates the Federal Government today on its decision to review the low value GST loophole as part of its tax white paper process in the New Year.

In a bid to protect retail jobs, the review has been backed by new Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg who declared that retailers were operating ‘with one hand tied behind their backs’ due to the GST loophole that allows for goods under $1000 purchased from online retailers to be exempt from the goods and services tax.

ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman said Mr Frydenberg’s comments couldn’t be more accurate.

“At this time of year, more than ever, we realise how important retail jobs are to the Australian economy. You’ll only have to go near a shopping centre today – Boxing Day – to understand the importance of supporting employment in the retail industry.

“The LVIT loophole is costing thousands of retail jobs in Australia – a further 33, 000 jobs will be lost in 2015 in the discretionary retail sector, having already lost 80,000 jobs since 2007.

“At the end of the day this GST loophole has done nothing but damage our retail sector. Retailers have been forced to play on an uneven playing field for too long as the current system is does not reflect the realities of today’s marketplace.

“The ARA is therefore relieved to see Mr Frydenberg pushing for the issue to be addressed as soon as possible and we look forward to seeing what positive effects the closing of this loophole could have on local retailers in 2015,” Mr Zimmerman said.

Since 1903, the Australian Retailers Association (ARA) has been the peak industry body representing Australia’s $265 billion retail sector, which employs over 1.2 million people. The ARA ensures retail success by informing, protecting, advocating, educating and saving money for its 5,000 independent and national retail members throughout Australia. Visit www.retail.org.au or call 1300 368 041.                                 

-ends-For interview opportunities with ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman call the ARA Media Line T: 0439 612 556 or E:media@retail.org.au


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