Minister for Financial Services, Superannuation and Corporate Law
9 June 2009 - 14 September 2010
Joint Media Release
Dr Craig Emerson MP
Minister for Small Business, Independent Contractors and The Service Economy
Minister for Competition Policy and Consumer Affairs
Minister for Assisting The Minister for Finance on Deregulation
Coalition walks away from Small Business on Super Clearing House
Today's debate in the parliament on the superannuation clearing house is clear proof that Labor is the true party of small business.
In consecutive days the Coalition has put forward an ill-thought out, anti-growth tax on Australian businesses and now threatens to block an important pro-small business measure: the free superannuation clearing house for small businesses.
"The Coalition has spoken about the Government keeping to its promise to deliver a free super clearing house service for small business at the same time as it seeks to delay passage of the very legislation that will help implement it," Minister Bowen said.
"Not content with taxing Australian businesses that are trying to employ Australians in the midst of an economic recovery, the Coalition is also working hard to deny small businesses access to a free, optional superannuation clearing house.
"Tony Abbott knows no bounds in going from outlining a Great Big New Tax on Australian businesses one day, to being a Great Big Spoiler for thousands of small businesses the next."
"The superannuation clearing house measure was an election commitment designed to reduce the heavy compliance burden on small businesses of them discharging their Superannuation Guarantee (SG) obligations," Minister Emerson said.
"The Rudd Government has worked hard to reduce the red-tape burden on small business in particular, and the superannuation clearing house is an important part of this drive."
The free and optional service has been welcomed by the Council of Small Business of Australia.
The CEO of COSBOA, Ms Jaye Radisich, said at last week's Senate Committee hearing on the legislation:
"We often criticise the government for not providing enough services and forethought to the small business community and their high-compliance costs, so we certainly feel that this legislation is a big positive. We think the legislation will improve the efficiency of business-to-government dealings and, as I said earlier, will help improve small business compliance with their super obligations more generally."
"The Coalition needs to move out of the way of a Government that is simply seeking to implement its election commitment of a small business superannuation clearing house," Minister Bowen said.
On 6 November 2009, the Government announced that its free service for small business will be delivered through Medicare Australia.
Pending the passage of this legislation, the clearing house service will be available to small businesses (with fewer than 20 employees) from July 2010. Businesses will be able to register with Medicare Australia from May 2010.
Medicare Australia has been actively engaging both the small business and superannuation sectors through its Superannuation Clearing House Working Groups.
10 March 2010