The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is calling for a competitive corporate tax rate to sustain growth and drive prosperity for the country’s $310 billion retail sector.
ARA Executive Director Russell Zimmerman says the ARA works hard to advocate and support employers and employees working in the sector as the Australian retail industry employs 10 per cent of the working population.
“The current trading environment has seen many retailers doing it tough, with last year’s retail-trade figures averaging 2.76 per cent year-on-year growth, and retail-trade growth down more than one per cent on the 50-year average in 2017,” he said. “The government needs to intervene and offer some relief to the struggling industry.
“At 30 per cent, Australia has one of the highest corporate tax rates in the advanced economic world, making it difficult for retailers to invest in jobs growth and increased wages that would benefit the economy.”
The ARA noted that the present corporate-tax rate currently discourages international and Australian businesses from investing in Australia and calls on all sides of government to drive investment and accept the economic benefits tax cuts will create.
“The senate needs to cooperate with the government’s plan to lower the corporate tax rate below 25 per cent so local retailers are able to invest in their businesses and grow the Australian economy,” Mr Zimmerman said.
Retailers have told the ARA that balancing rising cost pressures with low sales growth and a high-tax environment is becoming increasingly difficult, with some retailers even struggling to pay their rent.
“As retailers are already struggling in a volatile trading environment, the ARA will continue to advocate for a reduced company-tax rate before it stifles future employment and growth,” Mr Zimmerman added.