Australia is getting a great big new paint tax

Consumer watchdog the ACCC is planning to back a proposal by paint manufacturers to impose a 15 cents per litre levy on paint on environmental grounds to ensure the safe disposal of any waste paint.

The paint makers want the levy, arguing that around half of all waste paint in Australia is not disposed of properly, with both trade and retail users either maintaining stockpiles of leftovers or dropping it off in ordinary landfill.

The levy will go to the Paint Stewardship Scheme to expand disposal schemes, replacing state-run household hazardous chemical disposal programs. The levy will run until 1 June, 2021, and the scheme plans to have collection points for waste architectural and decorative paint in place by the end of that time.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission says it will seek submissions from interested parties before making a final decision.

The levy would add about $1 to the cost of painting a room.

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