800 Australian companies pay no tax, while millions suffer rising costs

Former Australian prime minister, Kevin Rudd, whose 2010 Resource Super Profits Tax was resisted by the mining sector and led to Rudd's removal as leader of the ALP (Photo: CC/flikr)

Karijini, in Western Australia, has stunning gorges. However, not many will be able to afford to visit now. Petrol prices are skyrocketing. Throughout Australia, inflation is taking hold and it is starting to bite. Many Western Australians are saying they can no longer afford the huge petrol prices to travel long distances.

ABC News states that almost 800 of the top companies in Australia pay no taxes and that “Thirty-two percent of Australian public companies paid no tax in 2020-21, according to Australian Taxation Office (ATO) data.” That amounts to trillions of dollars, stolen from the Australian people who cannot but pay their taxes.

As pointed out by Michael West Media in their tax dodgers awards earlier this year “The average Australian can’t set up hundreds of foreign companies to sell things to themselves. They can’t write themselves big fat loans and pocket the interest, or “service agreements” or royalties for that matter. They only have one rule, pay tax at the designated rate. No loopholes, no taxing “profits”, however, they may be calculated.”

The bigger the company, the more profits they make, and the less likely they pay any taxes at all.

If large corporations did pay their fair share of tax all poverty, homelessness, and dramatically falling living standards for all Australians could be eradicated. However, under capitalism, billionaires will never pay. The people who use the system to avoid tax and reap massive profits are the same people who fund the major political parties, who fund the think tanks that drive the policies of the major parties, and who own the media that report on this broken game.

Rudd deposed

The Australian Labor Party will do nothing about this massive theft. They are now a party of big business. Think back to the Resource Super Profits Tax proposed by Kevin Rudd in 2010. The mining sector mobilised against this policy with force and within a matter of weeks, Rudd was deposed as leader of the ALP. Julia Gillard massively watered down the policy, and rebranded it as the Minerals Resource Rent Tax, before the incoming Abbot Government axed the tax completely in 2014.

Only a socialist government, controlled by the 98% can stop this. Some trade union activists are starting to realise the days of the ALP defending Australians are gone. It’s time for a change.

The top companies should be nationalised under workers’ control and management. This includes renationalising the Commonwealth Bank and the huge resources sector. We could then utilise the profits generated by the Australian economy to benefit the Australian people. This would feed into a planned economy owned and controlled by the 98%. Importantly, we need a new workers’ party based on socialist ideas to drive this change.

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November 2022