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Relief for AU retail & LBS's in particular?

By StanTheMan - Posted on 21 August 2015

NB: Originally posted elsewhere on the Global Riders Network and appears via syndication.

Hi everyone,

I work for an online retailer registered in AU but not in the cycling industry*

you might all be kind of interested in this.

Its about giving AU retail a level playing field.

Our friend Joe wants to reduce the tax threshold for overseas online purchases. I read somewhere that, or someone on this forum once told me that, retail here in AU employs about 40% of the AU workforce.
So there is plenty of votes for Joe & Tony in this.

Basically they want to reduce the import threshold for goods purchased from OS online retailers. They are also considering a postage tax so it evens out the cost so the AU retailer has a fighting chance.
Sure, but I feel Joe is missing the point. He appears to be aiming at the big boys in town like Amazon ect.

If an online business is registered in AU & posts this from within AU its bypassing this tax.

Your independently owned LBS has a seriously hard gig now. But its not changing any time soon in my personal opinion. The LBS has to charge what they charge. The AU public (in general) is of the opinion the LBS is ripping them off.

Internet companies have a different chain of supply which unfortunately your LBS does not have, and has very little chance of tapping. And most likely doesn't have enough capital to start their own parallel importing. What needs to change for the LBS and small business owners is the amount of profit margins applied along the line of supply. That's what the Government needs to look at. although I must admit, I have no idea how to achieve that.

AU is a very corporate country. Cooperates run this place. They can lobby Government and basically the AU Gov does what they want. AU Government also needs to encourage small business. Like Germany & France perhaps where small business can also thrive. In all types of industry.

So back to the online thing. The big cooperates will have no trouble getting around this like wiggle , they have an office & warehouse here in AU. So much for that. They are already paying the tax(benefit of the doubt). And its not going to get more expensive.

One bike brand recently went online & advertised that consumers can now purchase bikes directly from them online. The LBS will collect a fee for assembling the bike & all parties will be jumping for Joy. They've basically done a fancy price fixing for their product. The consumer being the one that gets shafted.

I feel for the LBS owners & small business owners. Its a tough gig. But don't hold your breath for4 the LBS & small retail outlet getting any relief with tax threshold changing.

The consumer here in AU being the one shafted as always. But the LBS is not the one doing the shafting in my opinion.

.... how do they distinguish for taxation purposes between a courier delivering an overseas purchased item (with no GST) and a courier delivering an overseas gift? Or what happens if it gets delivered in the mail rather than by a parcel pick up arrangement? Or how does the guy down at the post office know whether the parcel I'm picking up has had GST paid on it or not?
So much of our Government policy announcements seems to be about being seen to be doing something (anything) rather than working out what the real problem is and actually doing something constructive to fix it.

is ripping me off, I think the layers between manufacturer and my LBS are ripping us all off.

For sure that's detail though. Scanning will work out the origin of the parcel. That's the easy part. It might change the workflow in Post offices & collection centers for Courier companies & that's where the cost of the postage fee/tax + GST comes in when you pick up.

Difference between a purchase, sample, present. Probably needs to be declared at place of origin. Just like now. Its all in the paper work. But the paper work has become pretty paperless with all the declarations. Its not perfect just yet but its getting much easier.

We use DHL for NZ. You might find there will be spot checks & your online provider will have to supply a copy of the invoice. In NZ for example the threshold is NZ$400.Occasionally they refuse to deliver when they feel the product/item is worth more than $400.We then have to supply a copy of the invoice. That's just all part of he fun.

That was part of my point with the all the different profit margins along the way to the consumer. Although I must admit, You put it in a much better way. Perhaps you could be my wordsmith next time i have the need for a rant. LOL

40% in retail - that seems way too much.

I guess it's fair but we already get shafted because we are a smaller market than the US etc.

"in general" comment. I did get that you felt the same way so all good.

Gareth, the size of our market is but a small factor. The "Australia tax" is a much larger component.

It's not the LBS, most of them pay more for the item through the importers than what the man in the street can buy it on-line for ...

10% more expensive now so I will only save 30%. boom tish

The Aust tax became evident when we could see the prices overseas. We have been shafted for years. If a " level" playing field was created would the retailers gouge again....nothing surer. Who's to blame probably not the LBS.

The treasurer talks tax reform which is much needed and instead the headline is a tax that will cost more to collect than it will generate - just to shut Harvey (the billionaire retailer) Norman up.

They will come up with a way that if its not clear the GST has been paid you will have to pay it on delivery or something moronic like that. How will they GST a Chinese ebay seller of $3 phone covers?

Adding 10% GST will not stop people buying from overseas! Whether bike parts or clothing etc.
Online shopping is all about convenience & speedy delivery, being cheaper is just a bonus. Oz shops don't know how to do it! Wish they did.
E.g. Ordered Shimano parts from LBS 1km from Shimano, parts took 5 days to arrive to LBS, parts were in stock coz i checked first. Plus shops won't chase up your orders. Buying stuff from UK or USA, on your doorstep in 2 days if you want!
Oz shops sell you a $5000 bike, then they don't wanna know you, service in Oz sux.
Bought tyres from large Oz online bike shop, one tyre was faulty, so didn't use, what i had to go thru to get it replaced was ridiculous. Won't use that Oz online store again!
Walk into Myers or DJ''s, if you can get someone to serve you, i'll be a monkeys uncle! That's why people buy online.

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