18 May 2017

Federal Labor is calling on the Treasurer to publicly release later today the Governments draft legislation and explanatory memoranda for its major bank levy.

Scott Morrison needs to understand that dealing with the financial system and major new tax measures requires transparency, not a cloak of secrecy that typified Mr Morrisons time in the Immigration portfolio.

Australian publicly-listed banks have continuous disclosure obligations as well as obligations to update Boards, staff, customers and shareholders of the potential impact of the bank levy design.

Mr Morrison should have waited until the end of market trading yesterday and publicly released the exposure draft legislation on the major bank levy.

The Treasurer is desperate to try and turn a measure that enjoys public support and support from other political parties into a stinker through appalling stakeholder management and secrecy.

Theres already an investigation underway over how the main details of the Governments $6 billion bank tax were leaked to the Australian Financial Review hours before the Budget was delivered.

And this morning, Assistant Treasury Minister Michael any good ideas along the way Sukkar couldnt rule out more changes to the levy like incorporating foreign banks into the remit of the levy.

Yesterday afternoon we formally requested that the Opposition be provided with a copy of the draft legislation.

Federal Labor has shown good faith in providing in-principle support on the Governments bank levy proposal from Budget night.

Presumably the Government will require the Parliament to consider this quickly in the lead-up to the 1 July start-date for the bank levy, so the Government should take the Australian people, financial system, and supportive political parties into their confidence today.