CSL calls for lower tax rate for advanced manufacturing

Australian biotech company CSL is calling for a company tax rate capped at 10 per cent, for advanced manufacturing derived from Australian innovations.

The company’s submission to the Government’s “Re-think” tax discussion paper concludes that Australia’s company tax rate of 30 per cent is too high but acknowledges that the job of reforming the tax system is a complex one. As such, it says a significant across the board company tax cut is not possible.

The submission says that an Advanced Manufacturing Tax would not reduce Treasury revenue, since Australia is not attracting significant investment of this type in any case. Rather, the addition to output and employment made possible by a genuinely more competitive tax rate would be expected to increase Government revenues.

Last year, CSL decided to build its new $500 million plant in Switzerland due to many factors including proximity to market, availability of staff with relevant regulatory and market experience, favourable industrial relations and, significantly, the lower corporate tax rate in that country.

“Australia possesses excellent universities and a highly effective research sector, in large part as a result of governments’ policies and support.  It’s clear that we need to look at our tax competitiveness if we want to take the next step to build the advanced manufacturing, to commercialise our innovations, and to knit Australia into global supply chains” Naylor said.

“CSL is Australia’s largest home-grown advanced manufacturer. We’d like to do more in Australia and we want to see Australia perform to its potential. Because we operate globally we know what’s required if Australia wants to be a serious advanced manufacturing player.”