[QODLink]
Asia-Pacific
Australian parliament passes mining tax
Plan to impose 30 per cent tax on mining sector clears its biggest political hurdle after passing through lower house.
Last Modified: 23 Nov 2011 09:11
Gillard had to rely on support from the Green Party to secure the mining tax vote [EPA]

Australia's plan to impose a 30 per cent tax on its mining sector has cleared its biggest political hurdle after passing through the lower house of parliament.

The Minerals Resource Rent Tax Bill, which will tax coal and iron profits, passed with 73 votes to 71, following support from the Green Party.

It will go to the upper senate early next year, where it is expected to be approved.

The vote is a major victory for Prime Minister Julia Gillard's Labour Party after 18 months of acrimonious debate that brought down Kevin Rudd, her predecessor.

If the bill becomes law, mining companies will have to pay about $10.8bn in charges in the first three years of the tax.

The government says the new law will help spread the benefits of Australia's resources boom to other parts of the
economy struggling with the global downturn.

"This is a way in which all Australians share in the bounty of the mining boom," said treasurer and deputy prime minister Wayne Swan.

The tax will hit about 30 of the country's biggest miners. Although it is set at 30 per cent, it will have an effective rate of 22.5 per cent when special mining-industry tax allowances are taken into account.

The government said the tax would not hurt Australia's record investment in mining but faced opposition from the Conservative opposition.

Australia's iron ore exports rose to a record high in September of $6.15bn, with the biggest demand coming from China and India.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
An innovative rehabilitation programme offers Danish fighters in Syria an escape route and help without prosecution.
Street tension between radical Muslims and Holland's hard right rises, as Islamic State anxiety grows.
Take an immersive look at the challenges facing the war-torn country as US troops begin their withdrawal.
Ministers and MPs caught on camera sleeping through important speeches have sparked criticism that they are not working.
Featured
More than 400 gaming dens operate on native lands, but critics say social ills and inequality stack the deck.
The Palestinian president is expected to address the UN with a new proposal for the creation of a Palestinian state.
Nearly 1,200 aboriginal females have been killed or disappeared over 30 years with little justice served, critics say.
Ethnic violence has wracked China's restive Xinjiang region, leading to a tight government clampdown.
Malay artists revitalise the art of puppeteering by fusing tradition with modern characters such as Darth Vader.