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  • Annual tax gap findings

    We update our tax gap estimates in October each year. This year we are publishing refreshed and updated estimates for 19 different gaps.

    The tax gap can be viewed from two perspectives:

    • the gross gap – this is the gap before the impact of our engagement
    • the net gap – shows the final uncollected amount after the impact of our action.

    Our latest gross and net gap estimates (both as a dollar value and percentage) for the transaction-based tax gaps are shown in Table 1.

    We also show the tax reported and current reliability assessment for each estimate. While all gaps have estimates for the 2018–19 financial year, some or our estimates are more contemporary with an estimate for the 2019–20 financial year. These estimates give us the very first insight into the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic which impacted the final quarter of the 2019-20 financial year.

    Table 1: Transaction-based taxes, latest available data

    Tax gap estimate

    Reliability assessment

    Financial year

    Gross gap ($m)

    Net gap
    ($m)

    Gross gap (%)

    Net gap
    (%)

    Goods and services tax

    Medium

    2019-20

    7,560

    5,267

    11.2

    7.8

    Luxury car tax

    Medium

    2018–19

    78

    66

    10.7

    9.0

    Wine equalisation tax

    Medium

    2018–19

    32

    29

    3.2

    2.9

    Alcohol tax

    Medium

    2018–19

    636

    582

    9.8

    9.0

    Tobacco tax

    Medium

    2019–20

    1,663

    909

    11.3

    6.2

    Fuel excise

    High

    2019–20

    375

    375

    2.0

    2.0

    Our latest net gap estimates (both as a dollar value and percentage) for the income-based taxes are shown in Table 2. We also show the tax reported and current reliability assessment for each gap estimate.

    Table 2: Income-based taxes, latest available data

    Tax gap estimate

    Reliability assessment

    Financial year

    Gross gap ($m)

    Net gap
    ($m)

    Gross gap (%)

    Net gap
    (%)

    Large corporate groups income tax

    High

    2018–19

    5,119

    2,631

    8.3

    4.3

    Petroleum resource rent tax

    Very high

    2018–19

    n/a

    24

    n/a

    2.2

    High wealth income tax

    High

    2018–19

    946

    760

    8.6

    6.9

    Medium business income tax

    Medium

    2018–19

    1,001

    814

    7.6

    6.2

    Small business income tax

    Medium

    2018–19

    13,451

    12,500

    13.7

    12.7

    Fringe benefits tax

    Medium

    2018-19

    1,157

    1,134

    23.1

    22.6

    Individuals not in business income tax

    High

    2018–19

    9,162

    8,428

    6.1

    5.6

    Large super funds income tax

    High

    2018–19

    171

    113

    2.0

    1.3

    Small super funds income tax

    Low

    2018–19

    58

    43

    3.8

    2.8

    The administered programs summary is for programs administered by us on behalf of the community. These differ from the categories above in that they are not taxes.

    Table 3 shows the gross and net gap (both as a dollar value and percentage) for each of our gap estimates for selected administered programs, for the latest year of available data.

    Table 3: Administered programs, latest available data

    Gap estimate 

    Reliability assessment

    Financial year

    Gross gap ($m)

    Net gap
    ($m)

    Gros gap (%)

    Net gap
    (%)

    Fuel tax credits

    Medium

    2018–19

    -48

    −7

    -0.7

    −0.1

    PAYG withholding

    Low

    2018–19

    6,847

    3,377

    3.3

    1.6

    Product stewardship for oil

    High

    2019–20

    n/a

    1

    n/a

    0.6

    Superannuation guarantee

    Medium

    2018–19

    3,520

    2,453

    5.4

    3.8

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      Last modified: 19 Oct 2021QC 53161