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Australian Greens want uranium taxed in challenge for Ms Gillard

Steel News - Published on Mon, 20 Sep 2010

Bloomberg reported that the Australian Greens Party wants PM Ms Julia Gillard of to increase a proposed levy on coal and iron ore profits and expand it to include uranium, underscoring the pressure on her 2 day old minority government.

Mr Bob Brown said that “We will be talking with the Treasurer about the setting of that tax. We’ll continue to bring forward legislation that is going to challenge both the big parties.”

The Greens Party won record 12% of the national vote at last month’s national elections, giving them nine seats in the upper house Senate and one in the lower house. Mr Gillard’s Labor Party must placate the Greens to pass legislation and do so without alienating three independent lawmakers who also helped her secure a parliamentary majority.

Mr Nick Economou political scientist at Melbourne based Monash University said that “They’ll have to approach this as carefully as they possibly can because of the different agendas. Everybody dresses up their interest as the national interest it’s a devil of a thing to try to work through but that’s the reality for the government.”

The Labor Party lost its majority at the August 21 election and was forced to woo independents to prevent rival Mr Tony Abbott and his Liberal National coalition from taking office. To win the support of the Greens Party’s sole member in the lower house, Adam Bandt, Ms Gillard pledged to hold weekly meetings on the Greens agenda.

Ms Gillard watered down a proposed 40% tax on mining profits put forward by her predecessor Mr Kevin Rudd after she replaced him in June. Mr Rudd’s tax plans sparked a confrontation with mining companies including BHP Billiton Limited, Rio Tinto Group and Xstrata Plc that helped drive his approval rating down to an election-losing level.

Ms Gillard’s solution was to pledge 30% levy that only applies to iron ore and coal. The Greens Party wants the 40% figure restored and expanded to include uranium part of its campaign against extracting the mineral that may include proposed legislation to ban the production of uranium oxide.

Mr Brown said that up to AUD 20 billion per annum is money that is not available for infrastructure, schools, health or nation building projects like high-speed rail, under the reformulated tax.

(Sourced from Bloomberg)

Posted By : admin on Mon, 20 Sep 2010
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