Inland Revenue - Tax policy Tax Policy

News and information about the Government's tax policy work programme, including:
- proposed changes to the laws that Inland Revenue is responsible for
- updates on the progress of bills through Parliament
- policy announcements

Simpler business taxes, tighter foreign trust rules in new tax bill

8 August 2016

The Taxation (Business Tax, Exchange of Information, and Remedial Matters) Bill introduced in Parliament today proposes a suite of business-friendly changes, including a new way for businesses to pay their provisional tax. The bill also strengthens the disclosure requirements for foreign trusts following the Shewan Inquiry, and introduces measures to implement the G20/OECD standard for the Automatic Exchange of Information, which New Zealand Financial institutions will have to comply with. For more information see the media statement, the bill and its commentary, and regulatory impact statements.


Hon Michael Woodhouse
Minister of Revenue

8 August 2016

Media statement

Bill to simplify business taxes, tighten foreign trust rules

A tax Bill to simplify tax processes, reduce compliance costs for smaller businesses, and tighten foreign trust disclosure rules was introduced in Parliament today, says Revenue Minister Michael Woodhouse.

“Business tax changes proposed in the Taxation (Business Tax, Exchange of Information, and Remedial Matters) Bill deliver on the Government’s Budget 2016 SME-friendly tax package announcement and will reduce compliance costs and make tax simpler for small businesses,” Mr Woodhouse says.

“Changes include new business-friendly measures to simplify the provisional tax rules, which will provide a new pay-as-you-go option for small businesses to pay their provisional tax, from 1 April 2018.

“The Bill also proposes to remove the 1 per cent monthly incremental late payment penalty on new GST, income tax, and the Working for Families tax credit debts, from 1 April 2017. This will help strike a better balance between penalties encouraging taxpayers to make timely payment without becoming overwhelming.

“Small businesses are the backbone of the New Zealand economy. We want to help them spend more time focused on their business, not their taxes and these changes will help make that possible.”

The Bill also includes measures to further strengthen and update New Zealand’s international tax rules with new disclosure requirements for foreign trusts. It proposes to introduce a register that is searchable by Internal Affairs and the Police, as well as annual disclosure requirements.

“Following the Shewan Inquiry, the Government committed to moving quickly on the changes to foreign trust disclosure rules and the inclusion of those changes in this Bill reflects that,” Mr Woodhouse says.

Finally, the Bill includes the necessary measures to implement the G20/OECD standard for the Automatic Exchange of Information, which New Zealand financial institutions will have to comply with.

The copy of the Bill can be found at https://taxpolicy.ird.govt.nz/.

Media contact: Yvette McKinley 027 427 7297