GST in Australia
The Goods and Services Tax (GST) in Australia is a Value Added Tax (VAT) on the supply of goods and services in Australia. It was introduced by the Federal Government with the A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax) Act 1999, taking effect from July 1 2000. The basic premise of the new tax was to broaden the tax base, which was heavily biased toward the provision of services.
Prior to the GST, Australia operated a Wholesale Sales Tax (WST) which imposed a tax on wholesales of goods. The WST was implemented in the 30′s when Australia had an economy dominated by goods. Over the years however, Australia’s economy evolved to be more services based, and the GST served to strip the unfair tax advantage that service providing businesses had over suppliers of goods.
The GST is levied at a flat rate of 10% on most goods and services, apart from GST exempt items, and input taxed goods and services.
How to Use GST Australia
Generally speaking, most of the GST questions that get asked are concerned with who needs to register and what it applies to. The GST is a relatively simple tax, but it can be a little complex in certain areas. This guide was put together with that in mind and hopefully you’ll have all your GST questions answered by using the question navigation. You should always get professional advice from a tax accountant when you are dealing with taxation for small business.
GST and Micro Businesses
It is important for new businesses to understand when they are required to register for GST, and the circumstances in which registration is unnecessary. Being part of the GST system adds another layer of compliance for small business operators, and some businesses would be better off to defer registration until their business has matured.