Insurers call on COAG for regulatory consistency
Money Management, 21 December 2007
The insurance industry is calling on the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) meeting to finally address the question of regulatory consistency across all states and territories.
The chief executive of the National Insurance Brokers Association, Noel Pettersen, said insurance taxation should be an “emerging issue of priority”, as the first all-Labor COAG meeting takes place in Melbourne.
“The question of taxation has got more chance of being solved now there’s a Labor Government in power federally,” he said. “Perhaps we’ll see some consistency across the states.”
Pettersen said it was time for the governments of NSW, Victoria and Tasmania to join the other states in abolishing the fire services levy (FSL) and adopting a more equitable system of funding the fire service.
“Insurance buyers, particularly in Victoria and New South Wales, are among the highest taxed in the world,’ he said. “These are world record taxes and charges, and a huge detriment in tough times to taking out insurance, which leads to underinsurance.”
Pettersen said: “It is unfair and should be based on property rates. Why should those who purchase insurance subsidise those who don’t?”
After the December round of FSL increases by the Victorian and NSW Governments, some policyholders are paying a mark-up of more than 80 per cent on their original base premium including GST and stamp duty,” he claimed.