West Australian Premier Colin Barnett is continuing to put pressure on Tony Abbott to increase the GST despite the prime minister having ruled it out.

Mr Barnett says he continues to believe the rate at which goods and services are taxed should be raised.

"For Western Australia, the key issue is a fairer distribution of the GST," Mr Barnett told reporters at the opening of a gas plant at Onslow on Friday.

He said there were many weaknesses with the tax, which suffered from online purchases.

"I respect what Tony Abbott says. I hope he respects what I say."

Privately, other coalition MPs supported an increase, he said.

A higher GST would lead to better living standards, Mr Barnett said.

Opposition treasury spokesman Ben Wyatt said Mr Barnett's call to Mr Abbott to increase the GST rate came across as an acknowledgment "that he's not expecting Abbott to provide any balance or change to the way GST is distributed".

Mr Wyatt said: "Ultimately, there's only one bargaining position that WA has left: to hold out on any increases in the rate of the GST until the distribution is fixed," Mr Wyatt told AAP.

"And now he's just capitulated on that and handed that to Tony Abbott."

Mr Wyatt said Canberra-bashing was a typical response from an under-pressure Premier, one who is seeking to distract voters from WA's credit rating downgrade to AA+ this week.

"As soon as he's under pressure, he attacks Canberra," Mr Wyatt said.

He said Mr Barnett was panicking, desperately looking for revenue sources, and trying to distract from fierce debate about the credit downgrade.

The Premier also declined to outline the details of any potential asset sales, revealed after the ratings slip.

It's known that energy and water utilities, port assets and land are all being looked at for sale.

"There will be a significant number of asset sales," Mr Barnett said.

"I don't believe they'll be controversial."

 

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