01/03/2005 - 21:00

Government answers

01/03/2005 - 21:00


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Before the recent election WA Business News asked the Government a number of questions. Here is a summary.

Before the recent election WA Business News asked the Government a number of questions. Here is a summary.


Q: Outline your plans regarding state taxes.

A: Announced tax cuts – mainly off conveyancing duties. “…we do not accept that there are no more improvements that can be made to the State’s taxation system and reform is an ongoing process. The tax system will respond to changing circumstances in the state. This Government will continue to make economically rational decisions with respect to taxpayers’ funds, from both a revenue and expenditure perspective.”

Q: What about skills shortages?

A: Spending $21.4 million in skills and training. Includes $14 million industry partnership with a target of 30,000 trainees and apprentices in four years plus $4.2 million in rapid response training for imminent skills shortages. $1.6 million allocated for a new skilled migration unit.

Q: What about other escalating costs for the mining industry?

A: Focus of increasing supply of skilled labour and improving the approvals process to minimise their impact on project economies.

Q: What plans have you got to provide infrastructure for industry in regional WA?

A: Spend $183 million in the Burrup and $18 million at Ravensthorpe; committing more than $300 million to ports over four years; $11 million Manjimup Railway upgrade; local government allocated 27 per cent of road user component of vehicle registration; $30 million on Indian Ocean Drive and Geraldton Southern Transport Corridor.

Q: How will you improve WA’s ability to win research and development grants and funding?

A: Funding for Centres of Excellence program increased to $9.3 million for 2005-06 and $10 million per annum for 2006-08.

Q: What about small business?

A: The Small Business Development Corporation will develop an Export Accelerator Program, a State Supply Advisory Service (to assist access to State tender process), Group Mentoring Program (for business clusters), and a Growing From Home program (home-based business). Maintain grants to Business Enterprise Centres. Reintroduce legislation to prohibit unconscionable conduct in B2B transactions, strengthen commercial tenancy laws, introduce further tax cuts  and remove legal uncertainty about current trading hours for small shops, car yards and tourism precincts.


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