One of the big questions the budget will have to answer on February 23 is how the Treasury sees the outlook for commodity prices, and what this means for government revenue and the fiscal framework.

The context is one in which the tax take now looks to come in significantly higher than the Treasury projected even in November, and the deficit and debt numbers will look better too. While most tax types have outperformed, it is corporate income tax that has shot out the lights — mostly because of a commodity price boom that has ramped up mining company profits...

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