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Taxpolicy

Minister of Revenue announces tax policy competition finalists

Minister of Revenue announces tax policy competition finalists 510 300 Taxpolicy

Minister of Revenue Judith Collins was on hand to announce the finalists for this year’s Tax Policy Competition.

They are Talia Smart and Nicholas Coyle (both from Inland Revenue), Treasury’s Matt Woolley, and PwC’s Chris Park.

The finalists for the competition, which has been organised by the Tax Policy Scholarship Charitable Trust (TPSCT), were announced during a live stream of events simultaneously held in Wellington and Auckland.

Smart’s proposal looked at removing the business income exemption for charities, while Coyle’s reconsidered the claw back of interest deductions. Woolley discussed full corporate-personal tax integration and Park revisited the idea of a land tax.

As well as Minister Collins, other notable attendees were Inland Revenue Commissioner Naomi Ferguson and TPSCT Chair and former PwC Chair John Shewan, who delivered the opening address.

The finalists will present their full proposals in front of a heavyweight panel of judges during the awards dinner in Wellington on 17 October.

Joining Shewan on the panel are ex-Bell Gully Tax Partner Joanne Hodge, former IRD Deputy Commissioner Robin Oliver, Victoria University Business School Dean Bob Buckle and ex-Secretary of Treasury John Whitehead.

The winner will receive $10,000, the runner-up $4000 and the other finalists $1000 each.

Late last year, the TPSCT invited tax professionals under the age of 35 working in the public and private sector or academia to submit progressive and innovative reform ideas for the New Zealand tax system.

Given 2017 is an election year, proposals had to outline a significant reform of the New Zealand tax system in terms of its bases, method of collection, interface with taxpayers, legal framework or structural amendment.

Twenty-five applications were received by the judges.

The TPSCT was established in 2012 by Tax Management NZ and its Founder Director Ian Kuperus. Its aim is to inspire the next generation of leaders in New Zealand tax policy and administration.

Joel Slemrod talks weird taxes of the past

Joel Slemrod talks weird taxes of the past 422 300 Taxpolicy

Taxes on beards, bachelors, wigs and windows.

As outlandish as these might sound, these taxes did exist at one point and were discussed recently by Robin Oliver Tax Policy Scholarships visiting lecturer and Professor of Business Economics and Public Policy at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business Joel Slemrod at a luncheon with a group of leading New Zealand tax professionals in Auckland.

The event, which was held at the Northern Club, was organised by the Tax Policy Scholarship Committee (TPSC).

Mr Slemrod – who was dubbed ‘The Rolling Stones’ of the tax world – talked about how farfetched taxes of the past provided lessons for tax policy today, especially how tax policy settings can drive certain behaviours.

The idea of his presentation was to highlight how the basic principles of taxation are hard to see when people are familiar with taxes or they are distracted by political rhetoric.

Attendees found his presentation to be entertaining and informative.

Mr Slemrod also spoke at Wellington’s Victoria University and the IFA Conference in Queenstown, and met with officials from Inland Revenue, Treasury and the minsters of finance and revenue during his visit to New Zealand.

About the TPSC

The TPSC was established by TMNZ and its founder director Ian Kuperus to encourage future tax policy leaders and support leading tax policy thinking in New Zealand.

The trust sponsors a leading international tax policy thinker to visit New Zealand to engage in debate and discussion, and a New Zealand tax professional to undertake research and study overseas.

Young tax guns to talk alternatives to CGT, GST on imports

Young tax guns to talk alternatives to CGT, GST on imports 453 300 Taxpolicy

Taxation of houses under a capital gains tax (CGT) and GST on imports are among the ideas four young tax professionals will showcase to respected tax leaders in Wellington in October.

Auckland trio Jeremy Beckham, Matthew Griffin and Peter North along with Wellington’s Caleb McConnell submitted proposals which outlined a significant reform of the New Zealand tax system as part of a competition run by the Tax Policy Scholarships Charitable Trust (TPSCT).

Each will present to, and field questions from, a heavyweight judging panel comprising the following:

  • Robin Oliver, former Inland Revenue Deputy Commissioner
  • John Shewan, TPSCT and former PricewaterhouseCoopers Chair
  • John Whitehead, former Secretary of Treasury
  • Oliver Hartwich, New Zealand Initiative Executive Director
  • Joanne Hodge, former Bell Gully Tax Partner.

As well as GST on imports and CGT, other ideas to be discussed at Victoria University on 8 October are a system where company tax losses can be purchased and sold, and a schedular tax base to promote savings and growth.

Shewan says judges were impressed with the calibre of the 14 proposals they received.

“It was great to see applicants thinking outside of the square and promoting policy ideas to tackle huge challenges such as the inability of traditional taxes to cope with the digital economy.

“Applications reflected a wide range of ideas, from growth-oriented and tax base protection initiatives to corrective taxes to deal with problems such as runaway Auckland house prices, environmental issues and disparities in regional economic and population growth.”

The winner will receive $10,000 and the other finalists $2000.

Tax professionals under the age of 35 working in the public and private sector or academia in New Zealand were eligible to enter the competition.

Proposals had to take into account future challenges facing the New Zealand tax system and detail how they could simplify tax and reduce compliance costs for taxpayers.

The TPSCT was established in 2012 by Tax Management New Zealand and its founder director Ian Kuperus to encourage future tax policy leaders and support leading tax policy thinking in New Zealand.

The finalists

Jeremy Beckham

Age: 27

Occupation: Senior tax consultant – Deloitte

Proposal: Schedular tax base to promote savings and growth

Matthew Griffin

Age: 28

Occupation: General manager – Hobby Co

Proposal: GST on imports using software and behavioural economics

Caleb McConnell

Age: 24

Occupation: Solicitor – Chapman Tripp

Proposal: Purchase and sale of company tax losses

Peter North

Age: 23*

Occupation: Tax consultant (transfer pricing) – Ernst & Young

Proposal: Different approach to the treatment of houses under a capital gains tax

*Turns 24 on 25 July.

Young tax professionals submit future policy ideas

Young tax professionals submit future policy ideas 549 300 Taxpolicy

Fourteen young New Zealand tax professionals have submitted proposals showcasing new ideas in tax policy and administration as part of a competition organised by the Tax Policy Scholarships Charitable Trust (TPSCT).

A heavyweight judging panel comprising former Inland Revenue Deputy Commissioner Robin Oliver, TPSCT and former PricewaterhouseCoopers Chair John Shewan, former Secretary of Treasury John Whitehead, New Zealand Initiative Executive Director Oliver Hartwich, and former Bell Gully Tax Partner Joanne Hodge will now review the entries.

Four finalists will be announced on 13 July.

They will present to, and field questions from, the judges at Victoria University in Wellington on 8 October.

The winner will receive $10,000 and the other finalists $2000.

The competition was open to tax professionals under the age of 35 working in the public and private sector or academia in New Zealand.

About the TPSCT

The TPSCT was established by Tax Management NZ and its founder director Ian Kuperus to encourage future tax policy leaders and support leading tax policy thinking in New Zealand.

Previously, it sponsored a leading international tax policy thinker to visit New Zealand to engage in debate and discussion, and a New Zealand tax professional to undertake research and study.

The Deputy Director of the International Monetary Fund’s Fiscal Affairs Department, Michael Keen, talked global tax policy issues with a select group of young tax professionals in Wellington and Auckland last year.

Professor Alan Auerbach of the University of California, Berkeley was the first visiting lecturer in 2013, while the IRD’s Carolyn Palmer was the inaugural scholarship recipient.

Industry heavyweights to judge young tax professionals’ ideas

Industry heavyweights to judge young tax professionals’ ideas 549 300 Taxpolicy

Four young tax professionals will present and debate their ideas for the future state of the tax system with respected industry figures in Wellington in October – and come away with an inflated bank balance.

The Tax Policy Scholarships Charitable Trust (TPSCT) is running a competition for young tax professionals working in the public and private sector and academia to showcase new ideas in tax policy or administration.

Finalists will give a presentation and field questions from the judges at Victoria University on 8 October.

The panel will comprise former Inland Revenue (IRD) Deputy Commissioner Robin Oliver, TPSCT and former PricewaterhouseCoopers Chair John Shewan, former Secretary of Treasury John Whitehead New Zealand Initiative Executive Director Oliver Hartwich, and former Bell Gully Tax Partner Joanne Hodge.

The winner will receive $10,000 and the other finalists $2000.

“Sound and innovative tax policy formulation is a critical ingredient to the development of a strong and resilient economy,” says Shewan.

“The Robin Oliver Tax Policy Scholarship Competition provides young professionals with a unique opportunity to promote creative policy ideas to tackle the many challenges that 21st century globally mobile and digitally dependent economies must face.”

Tax professionals under the age of 35 (at 1 January, 2015) are eligible to enter.

Entries close on 25 May. Finalists will be announced on 13 July.

Click here for competition guidelines and judging criteria.

About the TPSCT

The TPSCT was established by Tax Management NZ and its founder director Ian Kuperus to encourage future tax policy leaders and support leading tax policy thinking in New Zealand.

Previously, the Trust sponsored a leading international tax policy thinker to visit New Zealand to engage in debate and discussion, and a New Zealand tax professional to undertake research and study.

The Deputy Director of the International Monetary Fund’s Fiscal Affairs Department, Michael Keen, talked global tax policy issues with a select group of young tax professional in Wellington and Auckland last year.

Professor Alan Auerbach of the University of California, Berkeley was the first visiting lecturer in 2013, while the IRD’s Carolyn Palmer was the inaugural scholarship recipient

IMF figure debates global policy with future NZ tax leaders

IMF figure debates global policy with future NZ tax leaders 537 300 Taxpolicy

Around 40 young aspiring tax policy leaders discussed and debated global tax policy issues with the deputy director of the International Monetary Fund’s fiscal affairs department while he was in New Zealand last week for a two-day tax administration conference.

Michael Keen, whose visit to New Zealand as this year’s Robin Oliver Tax Policy Scholarships visiting lecturer was organised by Tax Management NZ (TMNZ), was the keynote speaker at the Tax Administration for the 21st Century Conference in Wellington.

The conference, organised by Inland Revenue, Treasury and Victoria University, was a chance for Minister of Revenue Todd McClay and leading New Zealand tax experts to share their views on future tax policy.

Prior to that, Keen engaged with future New Zealand tax policy leaders from the public and private sector at two forums in Wellington and Auckland.

Attendees were selected by their employers as being potential leaders in the field of tax policy development.

John Shewan and Geof Nightingale chaired the Wellington and Auckland sessions respectively.

As well as discussing and debating a number of tax policy topics with Keen, they also had the chance to share a meal and socialise with him afterwards.

Attendees said they enjoyed the opportunity to engage with other tax professionals at their level from other firms.

TMNZ’s founder director Ian Kuperus created the Robin Oliver Tax Policy Scholarships in 2012.

The scholarships, which recognise Oliver’s 30 years of public service leadership in tax policy, were established to inspire future tax policy leaders and support the continuation of leading tax policy thinking in New Zealand.

The scholarships committee sponsors a leading international tax policy thinker to visit New Zealand to engage in debate and discussion.

It also sponsors a New Zealand tax professional to undertake research and study.

Professor Alan Auerbach of the University of California, Berkeley was the first visiting lecturer last year.

Carolyn Palmer, the inaugural scholarship recipient, is researching the tax policy response to natural disasters such as the Christchurch earthquakes and the Queensland floods.