JB Hi-Fi chief says those who want GST cuts have “rocks in their head”

By Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY: JB Hi-Fi chief executive officer Richard Uechtritz has dismissed the notion that a cut to the GST would be a good thing, saying that patience and restraint are the keys to surviving the economic crisis.

Speaking to Current.com.au this morning, Uechtritz disagreed with his retail rivals Harvey Norman and Clive Peeters, both of whom said that a cut to the GST would be good for the economy.

“I’m not an economist, but this is one of the last things that I would do. We’ll ride out this [the economic slowdown]; it would be detrimental to the economy [to cut the GST]. People who are pushing that have rocks in their head,” he said.

Speculation that a cut to the GST has been growing in Australia since United Kingdom Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alistair Darling, announced that from 1 December 2008, the VAT, their direct equivalent of the GST, would be reduced from 17.5 per cent to 15 per cent.

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