The Gillard Labor Government has introduced the R&D Tax Credit to replace the existing R&D Tax Concession with a more certain, more generous R&D incentive to business, particularly SMEs.

“The Bill to introduce the new R&D Tax Credit—Tax Laws Amendment (Research and Development) Bill 2010, which is supported by the Income Tax Rates Amendments (Research and Development) Bill 2010—has been amended to address a number of concerns raised by stakeholders during consultations and as part of the Senate Economics Legislation Committee report of 15 June 2010,” Senator Carr said.

“The Bill confirms the start date of 1 July 2010, which provides increased benefits to smaller firms as quickly as possible, and clarifies that ‘factory floor R&D’ will be included under the R&D Tax Credit.

“Experimental development is important to Australian firms and represents 60 per cent of R&D expenditure in Australia.

“That is why we have made changes to the legislation and explanatory materials to further emphasise support for experimental development.

“In addition to amendments to the Bill, the Government has agreed to focus specifically on the dominant purpose test when the R&D Tax Credit is reviewed in three years time.

“The Government will also establish a panel of R&D Tax Credit users to advise me and the Department on any unforseen consequences of the new R&D Tax Credit."

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