Sugar tax leaves sour taste

The Australian Taxpayer’s Alliance (ATA) condemns the Australian Medical Association’s (AMA) push for a tax on sugary drinks.

“This tax is nothing more than a revenue-raising exercise being pushed by bitter bureaucratic busybodies who should let Australians enjoy things for once,” said Brian Marlow, President of the ATA.

“Time and time again we’ve seen how sin taxes like this fail wherever they’ve been implemented, yet the AMA seems to want to push these tired, broken tax models here in Australia.

“The implementation of a sugar tax in Mexico led to people eating more chocolate and sweets. What’s worse, a six-month experiment conducted by researchers at Cornell University found that when an American city faced a 10 per cent tax on calorie-rich products, the tax led to an increase in the purchase of beer!

“Australians have gone lockdown after lockdown with gross negligence from some state Governments. Businesses continue to face challenges while frontline GPs wait to get vaccinated. It is hard to comprehend the AMA’s logic in choosing to prioritise a tax that will do more harm than good in a climate where their key stakeholders and our frontline health professionals are yet to be immunized.

“The AMA estimates that the proposed tax would generate close to $1 bn per year and we are concerned that this tax would disproportionately hit low-income earners,” said Mr Marlow.

We will continue to advocate against this tax and will work to ensure Australia never sees such regressive and ineffective policy.

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