22 Jun 2010

GST panel launches website and 0800 number

7:30 am on 22 June 2010

Businesses are being urged to make use of the newly created GST advisory panel if they have any problems grappling with the impending rise in the goods and services tax.

GST rises from 12.5% percent to 15% from the beginning of October - the first change to the tax since 1989.

The panel's chair, Frank Owen, says it's already identified issues such as lay-bys and hire purchase agreements, council rates bills, leasing arrangements and insurance policies that straddle the changeover date.

Mr Owen says the panel will only deal with technical issues causing problems for businesses and could suggest law changes where appropriate.

Mr Owen says firms should contact the Inland Revenue Department first and only go to the panel for help if they are dissatisified with the advice they receive from the department.

The panel has launched its own website and 0800 number to offer help to businesses.