4 September 2019

Delegates at the Small Business: Big Vision conference put on by the Institute of Public Accountants and the IPA Deakin SME Research Centre heard from the Assistant Treasurer and Minister for Housing, the Hon Michael Sukkar MP giving a clear message around the important role accountants play in the economy.

Regulators such as the ATO should be showing more gratitude and doing everything possible to assist practitioners in doing their critical work in helping taxpayers comply with our tax system.

“Acknowledging that there has been a lot of good work done by the ATO,” said Mr Sukkar.

“However, I am looking for taxpayers including small businesses to have less frequent interactions but for those interactions to be more positive than they may have been in the past.

“As accountants are predominantly doing all the heavy lifting, I want the ATO to be more engaging with the accounting profession and do whatever it takes to better accommodate all their interactions with this Government agency.

“Accountants and advisers are pivotal to success of small business clients and its not just tax matters that they are asked to assist with but a plethora of business and non-business needs. There are few professionals who hold this trusted relationship,” said Mr Sukkar.

In responding to the Minister’s address, IPA Chief Executive Andrew Conway welcomed the Minister’s comments.

“It is pleasing that Minister Sukkar as Assistant Treasurer has sent a strong signal to our profession. The Government genuinely respects the work our members do, and this will be welcomed by all members working day in day out to maintain the integrity of the tax system as trusted advisers to small business,” Mr Conway said.