Macfarlane Pushes Tax Line

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Byline: Tom Williams tom.williams@dailymercury.com.au

OPPOSITION resources spokesman Ian Macfarlane was in town yesterday to restate the Liberal Party's opposition to the government's amended mining tax.

Mr Macfarlane met with local industry representatives and attended the NAIDOC week flag-raising ceremony at the Mackay Regional Council administration centre.

Mr Macfarlane said there was a clear message starting to emerge regarding the new resource tax.

"This tax hasn't changed anything for the small to medium sized mining companies, a huge amount of money will be taken away from these industries," Mr Macfarlane said.

"I thought it was incredible that you would have a situation where the Prime Minister of Australia would negotiate with the three multi-national companies and shut out the Australian-owned companies."

Mr Macfarlane said these smaller mining companies were finding out that the tax would impact on them but that they didn't even have a say in its re-design.

"These companies don't have the big money like companies such as BHP Billiton do," he said.

"Any tax is a bad tax, it takes money out of the business and gives it straight to Canberra.

"The Government is addicted to spending money ... this money is being taken away from local business, and it is money that will not be put back into the local region. …