South Australia ignores their own xenophobia concerns to raise tax on foreigner property purchases

South Australia ignores their own xenophobia concerns to raise tax on foreigner property purchases
South Australia ignores their own xenophobia concerns to raise tax on foreigner property purchases

The South Australian Weatherill government has reversed its position on foreign ­investor taxes.

It intends to raise more revenue by increasing a proposed levy on foreign buyers.

The reframing of the budget comes after Premier Jay Weatherill conceded the state bank tax was “dead” following its rejection by parliament.

State Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis responded by increasing the proposed “foreign investor surcharge” from 4% to 7% to raise an extra $36.6 million over four years.

It will recoup well short of the estimated $417 million the bank levy had been expected to raise, The Australian noted.

Foreign investor taxes on residential transactions in NSW are set at 8%, Victoria at 7%, Western Australia at 4% and Queensland at 3%, with an extra 1.5% levy for absentee foreign owners.

Koutsantonis last year said such a measure was an eastern states revenue grab driven by “a little bit of xenophobia”.

“It is also a recognition there are a lot of people in Southeast Asia and India who are fleeing … and they want to invest in other economies and bring their capital to Australia,” he said at the time.

“I am never going to say that I don’t want a type of investment because ‘I don’t speak your language’ … I think that’s appalling.’’

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Foreign Investment

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