CANBERRA, AAP – Treasurer Josh Frydenberg is keeping mum on media speculation that he will extend tax breaks for low income earners and slash the tax on beer.
The treasurer will hand down the federal budget on March 29, earlier than its traditional release in May due to the upcoming federal election.
The low and middle income tax offset, which was already extended in the last budget, is due to end in June and provides a tax cut of up to $1080.
It comes at a cost of $7.8 billion to the budget.
“We haven’t made a decision as to whether or not we’re going to extend the low and middle income tax offset. We have in previous budgets,” Mr Frydenberg told ABC radio on Monday.
The beer industry also wants a 50 per cent cut in excise duty after feeling the impact coronavirus pandemic lockdowns.
Australian Tax Office figures show that pubs and clubs sold 40 million fewer pints of beer between July and September last year than they did during the same period in 2019 and before the COVID-19 hit.
Even so, the industry was hit with additional excise in February, with excise rates for alcohol indexed twice a year in line with the consumer price index.
“I know what the industry has been asking for, like all industries, and they put in budget bids,” Mr Frydenberg said.
“They’ll be considered, they’ll be looked at in the context of all the different priorities we have.”