The R&D Tax Incentive’s (RDTI) administration model is being reviewed by the Board of Taxation (Board), a non-statutory Government advisory body, to identify opportunities for reducing duplication between the RDTI’s two administrators, to simplify administrative processes, and to reduce the compliance costs for applicants.
Changes to the RDTI’s broader policy settings, such as eligibility requirements or rates of support, are not being considered.
The RDTI is currently jointly administered by the Australian Taxation Office, which is responsible for the administration and processing of R&D tax offset claims, and Industry Innovation and Science Australia (IISA), which is responsible for registering companies' R&D activities. AusIndustry sits within the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources and delivers the programme on behalf of IISA.
The consultation paper notes, “The Board may make recommendations to modify the [RDTI’s] administrative model or to streamline existing administrative functions or processes. If the Board finds that taxpayers experience difficulty in understanding the different roles and responsibilities of the two administrators, the Board should consider whether education programs or communications would assist.
Importantly, the review being co-led by biotech veteran Neville Mitchell, who brings strong industry experience to the table. Mr Mitchell is the former Chief Financial Officer and Company Secretary of ASX-listed Cochlear Limited, and current NED of privately-owned and publicly-listed Australian life sciences companies, including AusBiotech member Q’Biotics Group.
A consultation paper has been developed in order to understand stakeholders’ experiences during the registration and claiming processes. The Board is accepting written submissions until 15 September 2021.
The Board will submit its report to the government by 30 November 2021. This review will fulfil a 2020‑21 Budget commitment.