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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 08 Hansard (Tuesday, 3 August 2021) . . Page.. 2229 ..


Omit paragraph (2), substitute:

“(2) further notes that:

(a) the vast majority of the ACT’s invoice payment process is currently automated;

(b) the Australian Tax Office (ATO) is leading a significant body of work to develop, consult, and finalise an e-invoicing framework in consultation with State, Territory, and Federal government departments;

(c) the ACT supports this e-invoicing initiative and is working with the Commonwealth Government to ensure national consistency for the planning and implementation of e-invoicing;

(d) the ACT will continue to monitor the implementation of e-invoicing at the Commonwealth level, which has yet to be finalised;

(e) the ACT Government reduced the standard payment terms from 28 days to 14 days for suppliers in 2020; and (f) 94 per cent of invoices are paid within 14 days; and

(3) calls on the ACT Government to continue engaging with the Commonwealth Government as they implement e-invoicing across their agencies and consider any lessons learned through the implementation process ahead of introducing e-invoicing in the ACT.”.

MR RATTENBURY (Kurrajong) (3.52): I rise on behalf of the Greens to make some comments and respond to Mr Cain’s motion today concerning the economic benefits of e-invoicing by the ACT government. We will be supporting the amendment moved by Minister Steel this afternoon, as I think it both reflects the intent of Mr Cain’s motion and adds some additional information. It also reflects the work that is being undertaken regarding the rollout of e-invoicing in line with the national approach to this issue. We welcome the opportunity to talk about this and thank Mr Cain for bringing forward the motion.

As the amendment makes clear, the government has made some very useful progress in automating its invoicing and it has made some real inroads in reducing payment times. I was particularly pleased to see in Minister Steel’s amendment that he notes that the vast majority of the ACT’s invoice payment process is currently automated, that the ACT government reduced the standard payment times from 28 days to 14 days for suppliers in 2020, and that 94 per cent of invoices are paid within 14 days.

These are really important measures for small business. Cash flow is important, and not having to spend time chasing up people who have not paid their accounts makes a material difference. These are positive steps that have already been taken, but, as Mr Steel noted in his remarks, the government is now working, as part of the commonwealth process, to move to a more comprehensive e-invoicing system.

With my portfolio responsibility as Minister for Consumer Affairs, I am certainly conscious that simpler, faster and more transparent systems are beneficial for both consumers and suppliers. I certainly think that these are important initiatives and ones that are worth pursuing.


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