Government urged to widen wage subsidy criteria

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Concerns have been raised that eligibility criteria for the federal government’s $130 billion bailout plan for business is too restrictive and many businesses with spiralling revenue projections could miss out; and with parliament in recess, first payments are unlikely to be available until May at the earliest.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison yesterday announced an unprecedented stimulus package for businesses and not-for-profit operators affected by COVID-19, with wage subsidies of up to $1,500 a fortnight a centrepiece of the plan.

However, criteria that requires businesses to demonstrate that they have already experienced a 30 per cent drop in revenue to be eligible has been criticised for being too restrictive.

RSM director Tracey Dunn described the stimulus as fantastic and unprecedented, but told Business News the Treasury had not yet defined the test parameters around determining reductions in revenue, and how revenue would be defined.

Ms Dunn said information available from Treasury indicated the reduction in revenue will be measured after March 1, and must be relative to a comparative period from a year ago.

“The information available also indicates the employer must have already experienced a reduction in revenue of 30 per cent or more,” she said. 

“This may be problematic

Covid-19 lockdown: No coercion on taxpayers to pay up, clarifies FinMin

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The on Tuesday defended the guidelines issued by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) to field officers working from home, after tax officer and staff associations described the directives laid out therein as tactics to pressurise assessees to cough up dues.


The Income-Tax department had asked field formations to contact over phone or email to follow up on pending collections.



sources said describing the directives as coercive tactics “is nothing but just an imagination.”


“The directives of are given to the officers to be and to act as facilitators to and to help them arrange their I-T related solutions through phone calls and/or other online methods. However, some quarters have mistakenly portrayed the directives of the as if directing its field officers to use coercion for collection of taxes in this time of adversity,” one of the sources said.


The sources clarified that during the ongoing nationwide lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all I-T officers including field officers, staff have been given guidelines to work from home by and are advised to make daily reports to

Dhanuka Lab implements resolution plan for debt-ridden Orchid Pharma

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The resolution plan of Gurgaon-based Dhanuka Laboratories for the revival of Chennai-based debt-ridden Ltd has been implemented, potentially fetching secured lenders around 32.3 per cent recovery. In addition, the secured lenders will also receive around 4,08,164 equity shares at an issue price of Rs 10 each for part of their debt.


Orchid Pharma’s regulatory filing on Tuesday said the paid-up equity share capital of the company has been reduced from Rs 88.96 crore to Rs Rs 40.81 crore, with cancellation of 88.56 million equity shares of Rs 10 each. A meeting of the Monitoring Committee held this week also approved issue of zero per cent non-convertible, non-marketable, cumulative redeemable debentures of value of Rs 3,650 crore to Dhanuka Pharmaceuticals Pvt Ltd – a Special Purpose Vehicle formed by Dhanuka Laboratories Ltd – for subsuming equivalent outstanding debt of by the SPV for consideration other than cash.



The lenders were able to recover around Rs 1,106.50 crore out of the total admitted debt of around Rs 3,526.74 crore, apart from the one per cent shares. Dhanuka will hold around 98 per cent shares following the deal and may

Five ways your accountant can save your business money

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Many small business owners manage their own finances but if you choose to employ an accountant, you may find you save your business money in the long-run.

More than bookkeepers, accountants are trained professionals who frequently see companies growing from new enterprises to established businesses. With their insight and skills you could be well on your way to tightening your finances and running your business in a way best suited to you.

Tax Planning

Tax regulations can be a maze and it can be very difficult to stay abreast of all changes to the law. Thanks to their expert knowledge on a range of tax planning options, your accountant can help you make the most of each tax year and advise on the most tax-efficient plan your business.

Your accountant can also save your business money simply by keeping on top of tax deadlines. While some penalties for late submission are smaller than others, they all add up and ultimately this is money that would be better invested in your business.

Cash Flow Advice

Having control over your costs and a good bookkeeping function can help with cash flow in your business. With a wealth of knowledge, your accountant can

Lotterywest sets up virus-rescue fund

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The state government has unveiled $184 million in initiatives to boost crisis support and provide rent relief for small businesses and not-for-profit groups impacted by COVID-19, while the City of Perth has announced a rent-free period for tenants in city-owned buildings.

The announcements come as Western Australia’s confirmed COVID-19 cases grew by 44, bringing the state’s total to 355 infections.

Lotterywest today unveiled a $159 million COVID-19 Relief Fund, of which $59 million will be immediately available to eligible not for profits and community organisations.

The initial emergency support will cover costs related to demand for critical needs such as food, clothing and shelter.

The funding will also provide financial relief for not-for-profit sports, arts and community organisations experiencing hardship, a result of events cancelled due to coronavirus-related restrictions.

“From now on, every profit Lotterywest makes from jackpots, draws and tickets excluding statutory grants will go directly into a newly created COVID-19 Relief Fund,” Premier Mark McGowan said.

The premier also announced today that not-for-profit groups and small businesses in government-owned properties would not have to pay rent for six months under the latest stimulus response to the coronavirus pandemic.

Mr McGowan said $25 million had been allocated to the

Govt may slash borrowing from market in April amid lockdown: Report

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India may slash or even cancel its planned borrowings from the market for April, looking at its options amid a nationwide prompted by the outbreak, two finance ministry sources told Reuters.


The travel curbs have disrupted routine bond market trading and volumes and prompted primary dealers, underwriters to bond issuances, to seek finance ministry intervention.



“We are looking at various options. Market borrowing is challenging in the current environment,” a senior finance ministry official said.

 



“So we are considering options of selling these bonds to LIC (Life Insurance Corp of India) or RBI (Reserve Bank of India). We might still look at a small borrowing from the market, but all options are on the table,” he said, adding that the government could also use the central bank’s ways-and-means facility – an overdraft facility the RBI offers to the state – to address any immediate cash needs.


Private placement of bonds would ensure the government gets the money it needs for its expenditure while there is no impact on the market.


He also said the government would likely take a month-on-month view

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