Australia has recently released its 2020-21 Federal Budget where they plan to combat the effect of Covid-19 by investing in infrastructure, job creation, asset write offs and personal tax cuts. Meanwhile in New Zealand, Labour continues their plan to keep New Zealand moving by investing in people, jobs, small businesses, infrastructure and global trade.

Australia’s approach of increasing the low-middle tax bracket thresholds is similar to what National proposed, with eligible Australians receiving tax relief of up to $2,745. These tax cuts are provided to encourage spending and stimulate the economy. Conversely, in New Zealand there will be a new top tax rate effecting 2% of New Zealanders and generating $550 million of annual revenue.

Australia has extended its $150,000 asset write-off deduction until 30 June 2022 for businesses with a turnover of up to $5 billion. In New Zealand our threshold has been increased to $5,000 until 17 March 2021, then $1,000 thereafter.

Both countries have implemented tax loss carry back changes. In Australia small businesses can carry back tax losses from the 2020-2022 tax years to offset previously taxed profits in 2019 or later tax years. All New Zealand businesses expecting to make a loss in the 2020 or 2021 year can use that loss to offset profits they made the year before. The key difference is that in New Zealand tax losses can be carried back one year, while in Australia they can be carried back to any year from 2019.

Additional Australian policies to boost job creation include a job hiring incentive credit where businesses will receive either $100 or $200 per week for each employee hired depending on their age, and businesses taking on new apprentices or trainees will be eligible for a 50% wage subsidy.