Prime Minister Tony Abbott does not back the removal of the “tampon tax”.

Though Joe Hockey has admitted that the GST “probably should” be removed from sanitary items, PM Abbott is moving to strike down the Treasurer’s admission.

The PM said “changes to the GST are a matter for the states”, but confirmed that the federal government won’t be leading the charge.

“I understand there’s long been a push to take the GST off goods which are one way or another regarded as health products,” he told reporters.

“It’s certainly not something that this government has a plan to do.”

A petition calling for the removal of the “tampon tax” has gained hundreds of thousands of signatures.

Condoms and lubricant are both GST-free, but sanitary items including pads and tampons are not.

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Victoria, South Australia, the ACT and Queensland have all indicated that they are in favour of removing the tax.

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