Miners through lobbies want more money for the north
A lobby group says abolishing income tax in the Northern Territory would help bolster a massive expansion of the region’s economy, productivity and population.
Mining magnate Gina Rinehart’s lobby, Australians for Northern Development and Economic Vision (ANDEV), has renewed its call to create a tax-free special economic zone to develop northern Australia.
ANDEV co-chair Imants Kins envisions a region run a management agency which maintains state, territory and federal laws, while abolishing stamp duty and payroll taxes.
“In the Northern Territory, if the income tax was completely abolished for a certain period of time, it would have a minimal effect on the federal budget and create a significant spin-off in terms of new jobs and enterprises created in that area,” Mr Kins has told the ABC.
The ANDEV website says the north part of Australia has long been “hamstrung by distant governments who don't understand the particular needs of northern Australia economies”.
Mr Kins says there are thousands of special economic zones around the world, and it is an idea that Australia should take a real look into.
A majority of international special economic zones have been established to encourage foreign ownership of factories and other facilities, aimed at developing or assisting ailing nations.
India leads the movement, with over one hundred such zones already set up and more than six hundred planned for the future.
“We could look at no taxation being paid by people living in the north, or companies that are investing and continue to invest in the north for a certain period of time,” he said.
“That would lead to a significant long-term increase in revenues for government, but also jobs for our children and our grandchildren.”
Mr Kins is also chair of a mining, oil and gas company, as well as a director of Northern Territory exploration company ABM Resources NL.
“If government gets out of the way, we can build a better future for north Australia,” he said.