Charitable donations in Australia

In the 2016-2017 tax year, Australians donated $3.5 billion to charity.

The actual figure will be higher because the figure above comes from tax returns lodged with the Australian Taxation Office (ATO). Not everyone lodges a tax return and many people make donations but don’t claim for them. There is also all the time donated by volunteers who work in op shops, environmental projects and sit on committees such as kindergarten and school councils.

The ATO notes that for those who did donate, and who it recorded, the average donation was $770.

“The most generous state was Western Australia, with 30% of residents claiming an average deduction of $1,190,” it says.

This is possibly because some very wealthy Western Australians donated large amounts.

The 2016-17 Tax Stats are available here.

Innovate or perish

DocklandsYou can make your fortune or blow your dough by investing in innovation, but nations need it remain competitive, which is why the Federal Government is proposing tax breaks for investors.

The Government is consulting on its proposals and how to define an “innovation company”.

It will be vital to set eligibility criteria that ensures money goes into early stage innovation projects, under a strategy announced in December as part of the Federal Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda.

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