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ATO reaps record $6.4bn from large corporates

Tax

Much of the additional revenue came from the oil and gas sector, helped by the work of the Task Avoidance Taskforce.

By Miranda Brownlee 9 minute read

The ATO reaped an additional $6.4 billion in tax from big business and multinationals for 2022–23 thanks to its Tax Avoidance Taskforce, the Tax Office says.

Commissioner Chris Jordan said the record-high result was a product of the ATO’s vigorous scrutiny and continued compliance intervention into the large market.

“This additional revenue comes directly from our compliance intervention,” he said. “It is an outstanding result that reflects years of sustained effort from the Tax Avoidance Taskforce to drive increased tax compliance by large businesses.”

“The taskforce scrutinises the tax outcomes of the largest 1,100 businesses and multinational groups to verify that they are paying the right amount of tax, and has helped to collect, on average, an additional $2 billion each year from public and multinational businesses. Last financial year’s result is three times more than this.”

Around $4.4 billion of last year’s result was due to the ATO’s earlier interventions in the oil and gas sector now flowing through the system, positively impacting tax collections.

It reflected the ATO’s ability to capitalise on success in the Chevron case, permanently removing more than $40 billion of past and future interest deductions for related party finance arrangements from the tax system.

“As a result, these large businesses are paying more tax and sooner,” the Tax Office said.

Mr Jordan said the ATO’s intervention and strong commodity prices meant some oil and gas companies were now among our biggest taxpayers.

“Some of the revenue is already flowing through the system, positively impacting collections now and into the future,” he said.

“We have been planting these seeds for many years and this work is now bearing fruit with significant outcomes for the taskforce’s compliance and assurance programs.”

The record high tax revenue collected from large entities reflected the hard work undertaken by the Tax Avoidance Taskforce to challenge avoidance arrangements, said Mr Jordan.

“We will continue to hold public and multinational businesses to account to ensure they are paying the right amount of tax,” he said.

“We have confidence that most large businesses are doing the right thing and meeting their lawful tax obligations. The community can be assured the ATO will detect and pursue those organisations that try to game the system.”

Treasurer Jim Chalmers said he was pleased to see the crackdown on multinational tax avoidance and the billions of dollars in extra taxes collected.

“The Tax Avoidance Taskforce has been a feature for some time in our budget but we're seeing something like three times the benefit of that work and that's a very good thing,” said Mr Chalmers.

“Every dollar that multinational corporations avoid paying means that ordinary people in middle Australia have to carry the can.”

Dr Chalmers said the extra $6.4 billion collected last financial year would help the government fund its priorities and ensure that the tax system was fairer for ordinary people.

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