Government organisations

What is a government entity?

The term ‘government entity’ refers to:

  • Commonwealth government departments
  • departments of an Australian state or territory
  • executive and statutory agencies
  • some bodies established by the Commonwealth or a state or territory to carry on activities for a public purpose.

Government entities are not ‘entities’ in their own right. They are part of an entity that is the larger body politic of the Commonwealth, state or territory.

For GST purposes, an entity includes a body corporate, a corporation sole and a body politic.

Examples of a government entity includes a:

  • Commonwealth statutory agency
  • Commonwealth government department
  • state government department
  • territory government department.

Find out more

  • MT 2006/1 Miscellaneous tax: The new tax system – the meaning of entity carrying on an enterprise for the purposes of entitlement to an Australian Business Number
  • GSTR 2006/5 Goods and services tax: meaning of ‘Commonwealth, a state or a territory’.

What is a government-related entity?

For GST purposes, the definition of a government-related entity builds on the definition of a government entity.

A government-related entity is any of the following:

  • a government entity
  • an entity that would be a government entity if it were not an entity in its own right
  • a local governing body established by or under a state or territory law.

Examples of government-related entities include:

  • a Commonwealth authority – for example, a Commonwealth government business enterprise that is a body corporate
  • a statutory body corporate
  • an independent statutory authority or body corporate established under a territory Act
  • a local governing body.

Although all government entities are also considered a government-related entity, not all government-related entities are government entities for GST purposes. For example, a local governing body that is a body corporate is, for GST purposes, a government-related entity but not a government entity.

Find out more

    Last modified: 22 May 2014QC 22915