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Tax break fails to boost printing industry

Tuesday, 28 July 2009
By Print 21 Online Article

Federal government’s 30 per cent tax break for new investments falls short of reviving the print industry.

According to Hagop Tchamkertenian, national manager for policy and government affairs, Printing Industries, the recently released June 2009 quarter Printing Industry Trends Survey report confirms that the tax break has not stimulated a significant investment in the printing industry.

“With activity levels plummeting in recent quarters, the persistence of idle capacity may have persuaded printing businesses not to avail themselves of the new investment incentives,” Hagop said. Reports of reluctance to invest date back to May this year where Hagop encouraged printers to make the most of the government’s decision to extend the cut-off date to June.

These findings fly in the face of optimism and claims from many suppliers, who believed that the tax break helped their sales – particularly at the May tradeshow, PacPrint.

Mitchell Mulligan, president of GAMAA, said that he was personally “surprised” by the claim, but the organisation was unable to comment in detail, offering only anecdotal evidence that its members were generally happy with sales generated as a result of the trade show.

As chairman of PacPrint, Alistair Hadley said that the tax break – which ended last month – was just the impetus many potential buyers needed. “It accelerated the decision process for some people and gave them a reason to buy,” Hadley said.

Speaking on behalf of Heidelberg, Hadley, general manager sales, marketing and product management, said the company benefited from the initiative and picked up “some major orders” at the show, but this was by no means reflective of all suppliers.

“The level of confidence out there is probably restricting people,” Hadley admitted. “Lenders and finance companies are not feeling that benevolent at the moment.”

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