Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Backpacker tax change treats tourism as a ‘cash cow’

Backpacker tax change treats tourism as a ‘cash cow’
September 28, 2016

While tourism groups have given a cautious welcome to the Federal Government’s decision to amend its plans to impose a 32.5% tax on backpacker workers, industry bodies say the changes will cost jobs and are a “blatant cash grab”.

The Tourism & Transport Forum Australia (TTF) has said the decision to reduce the proposed 32.5% backpacker tax to 19% is a step in the right direction to fixing the problem but feels the hiking of the Passenger Movement Charge is unacceptable to the industry.

TTF Chief Executive Margy Osmond stated “it is outrageous situation that the Federal Government continues to view the tourism industry as a cash cow.

“While I am very disappointed that the Federal Government wishes to push ahead with the backpacker tax, 19% is a hell of a lot better than 32.5%.

“TTF will be continuing our dialogue with other political parties as the legislation for this tax is introduced to the Parliament.”

The Tourism Council of Western Australia feels the backpacker tax will hit the tourism industry, resulting in less tourists and jobs across Western Australia.

Tourism Council WA Chief Executive Evan Hall said the increased Passenger Movement Charge would make it among the highest tourism tax in the world.

Hall explained “any increase on the charges for travellers will result in fewer leisure visitors coming to Australia.

“Every lost international visitor results in a loss of $2,560 in visitor expenditure.

“If 0.5% of people who would have travelled to Australia are put off by the higher airfares, it would result in a loss of 4,400 visitors, $11 million and 80 jobs per year.

“Tourism is an export in a highly competitive international market, and every time you tax an export you lose to other markets.”

Hall said the shortfall shouldn’t be paid for by increasing taxes on international visitors, just as we don’t tax agricultural or mining exports, adding “all this outcome achieves is switching a tax from one type of visitors, backpackers, to another type of visitor in international leisure tourists.

“Both of these types of visitor travels to regional areas, and taxing them with result in a reduced number of visitors, reduced expenditure and a loss of jobs.

“While a 19% tax rate is better than 32.5%, it will still have a detrimental impact on the tourism industry.”

The Australian Hotels Association (AHA) and Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA) welcomed the increase in the age limit for Working Holiday Makers from 30 to 35, and the reduction in the WHM visa fee from $440 to $390, measures that TAA had strongly advocated for a number of years.

Tourism Accommodation Australia Chair Martin Ferguson stated “AHA and TAA made a strong submission to the Federal Government arguing that the tax hike would provide a major disincentive to working holiday makers at a time when the industry was already experiencing shortages, particularly in regional and remote areas.

“We would have preferred a complete removal of the tax increase, but this is offset by the reduction in visa charges and also the increase in the age limit for working holiday visitors.”

27th September 2016 - FEDERAL GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCES PARTIAL BACKPACKER TAX REVERSAL

31st August 2016 - TOURISM KICKS GOALS FOR AUSTRALIAN ECONOMY, BUT BACKPACKERS DRY UP DUE TO PROPOSED TAX

26th August 2016 - TOURISM EMPLOYMENT GROWS TO 97,000 JOBS IN WESTERN AUSTRALIA

17th May 2016 - GOVERNMENT DEFERS INTRODUCTION OF BACKPACKER TAX

7th May 2016 - TOURISM INDUSTRY DISAPPOINTED BY BACKPACKER TAX RETENTION 

21st February 2016 - ‘BACKPACKER TAX’ CHANGES SOUGHT AS WORKING TOURISTS THREATEN TO LEAVE AUSTRALIA


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

Summit Fitness

Summit Fitness Equipment is now part of NovoFit - see www.ausleisure.com.au/suppliers/novofit/

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Technology / Wellness

 
 

Digonex

Digonex is a leading provider of customised dynamic pricing solutions to clients in arts and entertainment, sport, attractions, cultural institutions and retail sectors. Digonex’s technology is…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Sport / Technology / Ticketing

 
 

MYRTHA POOLS

Founded in 1961, Myrtha Pools® quickly became Italy’s première swimming pool company, and has since grown into one of the world's leading swimming pool construction…

read more

Aquatics / Design / Play / Waterparks / Wellness

 
 

WATERPLAY Solutions Corp

Whether your goal is increasing your centre's revenues or creating an engaging environment, why not add play to your project? If you're looking for stylish aquatic play features, kid-tested…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Play / Recreation / Waterparks

 
 

HIDROPLAY

Hidroplay welcomes you to the exciting world of children's Playscapes, waterslide's and Water Attractions. Appealing to families, Hidroplay increases patronage in your facility during those…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Recreation

 
 

GreeneDesk

Track. Engage. Retain GreeneDesk is a suite of cloud based software solutions helping health clubs, leisure centres and swim schools to effectively track progression, improve customer engagement and…

read more

Aquatics / Billing / Education / Fitness / Technology

 
 

HRMWEB

At easyemployer we've come up with a software solution that manages one of your most important, and often most costly, business resources - your staff. We are helping 100s of clients to…

read more

Finance / Fitness / Technology

 
 

VLOCKER

Vlocker Pty Ltd has been designing, manufacturing, installing and servicing locker systems worldwide since 1995. Vlocker specialises in providing locker solutions to suit client requirements in…

read more

Aquatics / Attractions / Safety / Security / Venues

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business