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23 June 2017

2017-18 New South Wales State Budget: Tax and duty changes, including significant increases to stamp duty and land tax surcharges, and certain exemptions and/or refund provisions for Australian-based developers and permanent residents

The New South Wales 2017-18 Budget handed down on 20 June 2017 has confirmed the pre-announced significant increases to stamp duty (from 4% to 8%) and land tax surcharges (from 0.75% to 2%) for 'foreign persons' of New South Wales residential property. These changes, together with others outlined below, have been introduced into the New South Wales Parliament under the State Revenue and Other Legislation Amendment (Budget Measures) Bill 2017 (NSW) (Bill).

As at 22 June 2017, the Bill was passed in both Houses of NSW Parliament and is now awaiting assent.

25 May 2017

The Government Procurement (Judicial Review) Bill, which was originally planned to be introduced to the Commonwealth Parliament in its 2016 Spring sittings, has been introduced into the House of Representatives this morning.

If passed, the Bill will effect a significant change to the law concerning tender challenges. Suppliers will have a statutory basis to challenge a tender decision for non-compliance with the Commonwealth Procurement Rules (CPRs), rather than having to overcome the current difficulties and processes to making such a challenge.

17 May 2017

A breaking news tax update on the Practical Compliance Guideline issued 16 May 2017.

The Australian Taxation (ATO) has today issued a draft 'Practical Compliance Guideline' which sets out how it intends to deal with cross-border related party financing arrangements from 1 July 2017.

16 May 2017

The Law on the Pledge of Movable Property and Intangible Assets (2015) (Pledge Law) has recently taken effect in Mongolia. The Pledge Law is likely to assist those who wish to secure the performance of an obligation by way of a pledge over movable property or intangible assets in Mongolia.

Important changes under the Pledge Law include:

  • the creation of an electronic registration system which allows for registration of certain new and existing pledges of movable property and intangible assets;
  • the ability for third parties to search the electronic registration system for the existence of registered pledges of movable property and intangible assets;
  • priority being given to qualifying pledges which are perfected through electronic registration or other certain prescribed means under the Pledge Law; and
  • increased certainty of available rights to pledgees (those to whom qualifying property or assets have been pledged) for enforcement in the event of a default under a pledge arrangement.

The effective date of the Pledge Law is 1 March 2017 (Effective Date) and the electronic registration system envisaged by the Pledge Law is now available for use.

16 May 2017

Over the weekend an unprecedented ransomware attack spread malicious software known as 'WannaCry' around the world. Britain's National Health Service was one of the more high-profile victims, with the service forced to cancel surgery, close emergency rooms and divert ambulances as a result of the attack. And while a British-based, self-confessed 'accidental hero' managed to halt the spread of the WannaCry virus, and Australia appears to have escaped the worst of the fallout, the consequences for business, government and individuals are far from complete, with the Australian Prime Minister's cyber security expert warning 'this is not game over'.

9 May 2017

In this MinterEllison tax bulletin, we highlight the key tax measures which have emerged in the Budget, focusing on business taxpayers and those measures which have been announced for the first time on Budget night.

9 May 2017

On 31 March 2017, the Supreme Court of Victoria handed down a decision confirming that the transition of a partnership interest was not subject to transfer duty under the Duties Act 2000 (Vic) (the Act). Despite the clear reasoning of the Supreme Court and the strong historical judicial support for the decision, disappointingly the Victorian Commissioner of State Revenue (Commissioner) has appealed the decision.

21 April 2017

On 21 April 2017, the Full Federal Court of Australia handed down its judgment in the landmark transfer pricing dispute between Chevron and the Commissioner of Taxation.

31 March 2017

On 28 March 2017, the Australian Government announced its proposals to reform the law relating to insolvent trading, and the right to terminate contracts based on insolvency ('ipso facto clauses').

30 March 2017

On 27 March 2017 the Federal Government directed the ACCC to hold an inquiry into the supply of retail electricity in the National Electricity Market. This direction gives the ACCC power to investigate and report on retail electricity prices. We consider below the likely trajectory of the ACCC inquiry based on our experience with similar inquiries in the past.

10 March 2017

The Victorian Government has announced that it intends to introduce a suite of initiatives to increase housing affordability and re-balance the market between investors and home buyers.

28 February 2017

As has been heavily covered in the financial press, there has been a significant shift in APRA’s position on the relevance of climate change risk to the financial sector.

28 February 2017

On 23 February 2017, the State Revenue Legislation Further Amendment Bill 2017 (Bill) was introduced into the New South Wales Parliament. The Bill amends the Duties Act 1997 (Duties Act), the Land Tax Management Act 1956 (LTM Act), and the Payroll Act 2007.

17 February 2017

The Retail Leases Amendment (Review) Bill 2016 (NSW) was passed by the NSW Legislative Assembly this week without amendment.

13 February 2017

The waiting is over! Both Houses of Parliament have passed the Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Bill 2016 unamended. The various Committees that reviewed the Bill raised little objection and it has progressed with bi-partisan support.

9 February 2017

On 31 January 2017, the Supreme Court of New South Wales handed down judgment in In the matter of OneSteel Manufacturing Pty Limited (administrators appointed). This important decision highlights the severe consequences that may follow from seemingly innocuous mistakes made when registering security interests. The error that gave rise to the proceeding was the use of an Australian Business Number (ABN) instead of an Australian Company Number (ACN) to identify the grantor in the financing statement. The judgment focuses attention on the importance of strictly complying with the registration requirements of the Personal Property Securities Act 2009 (Cth) (PPSA); confirms the constitutional validity of the PPSA vesting provisions; and also illustrates the limits of the Court's powers under the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth) (Corporations Act) to extend the time for making PPSA registrations when the subject security interest has already vested in the grantor under the PPSA.

9 December 2016

The Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment Act 2014 (Cth) was passed on 22 November 2016, introducing better governance and financial accountability of registered organisations (both unions and employer groups).

1 December 2016

The Federal Court of Australia has handed down a decision that is a salutary reminder to directors that, in any corporate tax planning, it is important not to miss the forest for the trees.

28 November 2016

On 17 November 2016, the ATO released a new Taxpayer Alert dealing with trust income reduction arrangements under review by the ATO. The Alert highlights the ATO's increasing concern with some trust arrangements.

24 November 2016

The Foreign Investment Review Board has today released a guidance note on the application of the tax conditions to foreign investments.