(Australian Associated Press)
Former union boss Bill Kelty wants tax relief for big earners to go even further, but Treasurer Josh Frydenberg is sticking with cuts that just passed parliament.
Mr Kelty, who ran the ACTU during the Hawke-Keating years, believes the top marginal tax rate of nearly 50 per cent is “absurdly high” and should be well below 40 per cent.
“There is nothing wrong in saying we are one of the highest taxing countries, we are at the highest taxing point in our history and we want to actually tell people where we are going over the next five-or-10 years, ” Mr Kelty told The Australian Financial Review.
He argued cutting the top marginal tax rate should be coupled with more effective taxes on property and capital to level the playing field.
Mr Frydenberg said it would have been nice to hear from Mr Kelty during the recent federal election campaign.
“It’s interesting that Bill Kelty is saying this after the election, because we didn’t hear that from Labor or senior people like Bill Kelty before the election,” he told reporters in Melbourne on Monday.
“We have a tax plan, we took it to the Australian people, and now we have faithfully implemented it.”
Labor leader Anthony Albanese sidestepped Mr Kelty’s comments, saying his sole focus was stage one of the coalition government’s income tax cuts, which passed federal parliament last week.
“That’s the only tax cut that will occur during this term of government,” he told reporters in Brisbane on Monday.
“I’ll respond to people and policies that are actually on the table, and what is on the table is the stage one tax cuts.”