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Draft legislation revealed to reform WET rebate

The Winemakers’ Federation of Australia (WFA) has welcomed the release of the exposure draft legislation to reform the Wine Equalisation Tax (WET) rebate.

“The Australian wine industry, a significant contributor to the Australian economy, employing thousands of Australians in regional and rural communities, has fought long and hard for reform of the WET rebate eligibility criteria,” , said Tony Battaglene, WFA chief executive.

“The WET reforms announced last year have gone a long way to restoring integrity in the tax system, and once implemented will allow this very important sector to continue to grow and deliver benefits to rural and regional Australia.”

The WFA will now study the draft legislation closely and work with the government to iron out any potential issues.

“We are delighted the government has recognised the importance of the wine sector to Australia,” Battaglene said. “The WET legislation recognises the unique and valuable role the wine sector plays in the Australian economy. The legislative changes improve the integrity of the system and are vital to the success of the wine sector and its profitability.

“Our contribution to regional Australia and exports through wine producers who build brands, invest in regional communities and create local jobs is significant. Once implemented the legislative changes will put an end to uncertainty and put the industry in a stronger long-term position.”
The bedding down of these changes, along with the new $100,000 Wine Tourism and Cellar Door grant, and the $50 million Export and Regional Support Package, will ensure that the Australian wine industry continues to deliver economic and social benefits in their regions.

The Federal Government has released exposure draft legislation and associated explanatory material that would amend the A New Tax System (Wine Equalisation Tax) Act 1999 to give effect to the reforms to the wine equalisation tax (WET) rebate announced on 2 December 2016.

The purpose of consultation is to seek industry views on the implementation details of the changes to the WET rebate as set out in the exposure draft legislation and explanatory material.

From 1 July 2018, eligible producers will be required to own at least 85 per cent of the grapes used to make the wine throughout the winemaking process. The rebate will be limited to wine branded with a registered trademark, and packaged in a container not exceeding five litres for domestic retail sale. In addition, wine producers will need to better link their rebate claims to the wine tax being paid. The WET rebate cap will also be reduced from $500,000 to $350,000 from 1 July 2018.

Making a Submission
Interested parties are invited to comment on the exposure draft legislation.
While submissions may be lodged electronically or by post, electronic lodgement is preferred. For accessibility reasons, please submit responses sent via email in a Word or RTF format. An additional PDF version may also be submitted.

All information (including name and address details) contained in submissions will be made available to the public on the Treasury website unless you indicate that you would like all or part of your submission to remain in confidence. Automatically generated confidentiality statements in emails do not suffice for this purpose. Respondents who would like part of their submission to remain in confidence should provide this information marked as such in a separate attachment.

Legal requirements, such as those imposed by the Freedom of Information Act 1982, may affect the confidentiality of your submission.

Closing date for submissions: Friday, 28 April 2017

Address written submissions to:

Indirect Tax and Not-for-profit Unit
Individuals and Indirect Tax Division
The Treasury
Langton Crescent

For enquiries please call David Pullen +61 2 6263 3941

AB Mauri



WID 2017