Australian retailers have complained to on-line shopping (buying things over the internet), reasoning that it is unfair for the government not to charge the on line shoppers GST (tax) whereas they (retailers) are being charged GST for goods sold. Large retailers are pushing a large campaign worth millions of dollars to urge the Federal Government to take action and charge tax on on-line purchases or pass their burden to some 76,000 workers by reducing hours in shift and other employees on part-time basis, they warn this could deteriorate resulting in loss of jobs which in-turn could have domino effect on other industries.
Here is what the Aussie retailers have as one of their proposal to the Government “Everyone is exempt from GST and duty charges for online purchases less than $ 1,000”, blaming the Government of being inconsistent with their tax policies.
In its initial response to this the Government has begun by announcing a productivity commission inquiry into the taxing of on-line purchases.
Meanwhile consumers are complaining too , it is not fair for retailers like Myer , David Jones, Target, Harvey Norman about these senseless and baseless unfair tax proposal say it is time these giant retailers rethink their strategies and rethink their business models. Most consumers state the fact that shopping online they get the identical items they buy from the retailers for half the price. Consumers are frankly stating this GST imposed will not benefit the Government in anyway instead it will continue trickle down to the large profit of the retailers into large CEO salaries and lavish bonus payouts to shareholders of the retailers themselves. Most consumers who shop online see the choice of shopping online to be economically cheaper even if GST is being charged on the goods bought online compared to the high profit margin by retailers charge, at the end of the day the power of choice should be left to the consumers - enough of protectionism this is a globalized world.
Meanwhile critics of this online- tax stated that it would be quite hard to implement this theory of charging online purchases GST as it would come with a heavy price tag which would cost the government millions of money, imagine how will the government monitor the online GST and at the end of the day who will benefit from this and who will the burden be passed to (the retailers will definitely benefit when the consumers will suffer the consequences while the government facilitates the whole mess). Critics continue to claim consumers choose to shop online because of the rip-off cost retailers are charging therefore consumers are avoiding them.
One critic was quoted saying this :
“ When Australia imposes GST on all foods coming from other countries many overseas sellers will stop selling to Australians, normally taxes are collected at point of sale and so sellers in other countries will be expected to collect GST for the Australian Government and submit GST regularly and for many the Australian market is just no big enough to warrant them to all that trouble. In addition, there is the massive cost of policing all parcels coming into Australia that will be borne by the Australian taxpayer and which will not be covered by the extra GST being collected(so, in fact, this would be a tax on Australians going straight into the pockets of retailers). Retailers know this and they don't care about the fairness of GST at all, they want to see many overseas retailers simply refuse to sell to Australians, and in that way they can keep their massive markups on goods that can currently be purchased elsewhere for a small fraction of the gouging going on in Australian stores”
Now it is up to the government to decide on this and come up with something which should be fair to everyone retailers and consumers because the Government is there to regulate and enforce good fair policies.