Wednesday, 01 October 2014 Sydney

Invest In Australia News::

  • Roads to Recovery on the way to councils

    Local councils across Australia will this week receive advice of their allocation under the Australian Government's Roads to Recovery programme.

    Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss today confirmed he will be writing to all councils to advise each local government authority of its share of the Australian Government's $2.1 billion injection into Roads to Recovery over the 2014–15 to 2018–19 period.

    “This year, the Australian Government is allocating $350 million to councils under Roads to Recovery,” Mr Truss said.

  • The Australian Government is providing $4 million across five years to the Royal Life Saving Society Australia – part of a $15 million package to cut drowning deaths across the nation.

    With a staggering 266 people dying in Australian waterways last year, the Australian Government has stepped up its efforts to reduce the number of drowning deaths in Australian waterways. 

    The Australian Government is providing $4 million across five years to the Royal Life Saving Society Australia – part of a $15 million package to cut drowning deaths across the nation.

    The Minister for Health and Minister for Sport Peter Dutton announced the funding while launching the Royal Life Saving National Drowning Report 2014 at Parliament House today. 

    The $4 million to the Royal Life Saving Society Australia is aimed at preventing drowning in inland waterways. 

  • Trade and Investment Minister Robb visits the United States

    Minister for Trade and Investment Andrew Robb will discuss the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) with the US Trade Representative, Ambassador Mike Froman, during his fourth Ministerial visit to the United States on 29 and 30 September.

    “Australia is committed to concluding an ambitious, commercially meaningful TPP, including high quality market access outcomes. I will be discussing with my US counterpart, Ambassador Mike Froman, how to move the TPP towards successful conclusion”.

    The TPP is being negotiated between twelve countries in the Asia Pacific region, which together account for almost 40 per cent of global GDP. It will provide an important new platform for market access opportunities and economic integration in our fast growing region.

  • Pre-registration open for Medibank Private Share Offer

    Australians can now pre-register to receive a prospectus for the Medibank Private Share Offer.

    The pre-registration process is another important step in the Government’s orderly and methodical execution of the sale of Medibank Private.

    Medibank Private is Australia’s largest private health insurer and provides health insurance cover for over 3.8 million people across Australia.

    Australian residents who pre-register to receive a prospectus and then apply for shares can receive a preferential allocation of shares.

  • New legislation to address the 4.5 million appointments missed by job seekers each year

    Assistant Minister for Employment Luke Hartsuyker today introduced legislation into the House of Representatives to ensure more job seekers attend their compulsory appointments with their employment providers.

    The Social Services and Other Legislation Amendment (Strengthening Job Seeker Compliance) Bill will tighten the rules to encourage more job seekers to attend their appointments with their providers - or to ring up ahead of time and reschedule - rather than simply not turn up and waste their employment provider’s time.

    “In 2013-14, 12.75 million compulsory appointments with employment providers were scheduled and, of these, 4.47 million were not attended by job seekers," Mr Hartsuyker said.

  • Legislation to ensure funding for Indigenous students and students with disability

    Legislation that will clear the way for an extra $6.8 million to flow to non-government schools that have large numbers of Indigenous boarding students from remote areas was introduced into the Australian Parliament today.

    Minister for Education, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP said that, if passed by the Parliament, the Australian Education Amendment Bill 2014 will also protect $2.4 million for students with disability.

    “This Government is committed to making sure every Australian child has the opportunity to reach their potential through a great education, that’s why we’re investing a record $64.5 billion in schools over the next four years,” Mr Pyne said.

  • Media Release: Man charged with proceeds of crime offence

    This is a joint media release between the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Queensland Police Service (QPS).

    A 32-year-old Kingston man has been charged with proceeds of crime offences as part of an ongoing operation being conducted by the Brisbane based Joint Counter Terrorism Team (JCTT), which includes members of the Australian Federal Police (AFP) and Queensland Police Service (QPS).

    On Thursday 25 September, officers conducted a search warrant in the Brisbane suburb of Kingston as part of this ongoing operation.

  • The resources and energy sectors continue to drive economic growth

    Australia’s resources and energy commodity export earnings increased 12 per cent in 2013-14 to total $195 billion according to the Resources and Energy Quarterly–September Quarter 2014, released today by the Bureau of Resources and Energy Economics (BREE). Continued growth in volumes and a more favourable exchange rate offset lower commodity prices for most commodities. 


  • Australian Government funding to support greater autonomy in South Australian government schools

    The Australian Government’s $70 million Independent Public Schools (IPS) initiative will improve the capacity of school leaders and communities within South Australian government schools to make their own decisions.

    Between 2014 and 2017, South Australia will receive $5.53 million in federal funding.

    To find out more, visit the Students First website.




    25 Sep 2014

  • 14-246MR Etrade Australia Securities Limited pays $55,000 infringement notice penalty

    Etrade Australia Securities Limited (Etrade) has paid a penalty of $55,000 to comply with an infringement notice given to it by the Markets Disciplinary Panel (MDP). The penalty was for failing to prevent the entry into the ASX Trading Platform of an erroneous order which resulted in a market for SPDR MSCI Australia Select High Dividend Yield Fund units not being both fair and orderly.

    Background and circumstances

    The MDP was satisfied that:

  • Federal Court orders $300,000 penalty after finding 'free range' egg claims to be misleading

    The Federal Court has declared by consent that Pirovic Enterprises Pty Ltd (Pirovic) engaged in misleading conduct and made misleading representations in its labelling and promotion of eggs as ‘free range’, in proceedings brought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.

    The Court ordered that Pirovic pay a pecuniary penalty of $300,000 and contribute to the ACCC’s costs.

    From January 2012 until January 2014, Pirovic used egg cartons which included the words ‘Free Range’ and images of hens on open pasture.

  • $7 million to improve natural disaster resilience

    Commonwealth Minister for Justice Michael Keenan and South Australian Emergency Services Minister Tony Piccolo today announced more than $7 million of projects to assist communities across South Australia build resilience to natural disasters.

    Mr Keenan said while the nature and size of the country's landscape meant that natural hazards were a fact of life in Australia, communities were stepping up efforts to manage natural disaster risks.

    "Natural disasters have an enormous impact on our economy and cripple businesses and communities. These projects, led by state agencies, local councils, non-government organisations, volunteer organisations and researchers, are all designed to help communities better prepare and respond to natural disasters."

  • 14-243MR ASIC bans former Queensland-based adviser

    ASIC has banned Michael Richard Irwin, a Rockhampton-based former financial adviser, from providing financial services for five years.

    ASIC banned Mr Irwin on the basis that he did not have a reasonable basis for advice and failed to provide Statements of Advice (SOAs) that disclose the basis on which his advice was given. The misconduct occurred during the period June 2012 to June 2013.

    In particular, Mr Irwin failed to:

  • DonateLife community awareness grants

    Community groups and local organisations throughout Australia are invited to apply for awareness grants to promote organ and tissue donation.

    The Assistant Minister for Health, Fiona Nash, said $463,000 in grants is available to support community awareness and education activities about organ and tissue donation, and the importance of people discussing their donation decision with their family.

    “Community awareness activities play an important role in engaging people on the important issue of organ and tissue donation,” Minister Nash said.

    “The more we build awareness and start conversations about donation, the more we normalise what for some people can be a sensitive topic.

  • HMAS Toowoomba intercepts drugs off Africa

    A combined Australian and New Zealand operation 260 km off the coast of Africa has seized more than 5.6 tonnes of cannabis resin worth an estimated $280 million (AUD).

    The five day operation involved Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Toowoomba and a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion which was called to assist in bad weather.

    During an exhaustive search this week, the Australian boarding party discovered cannabis resin in hessian bags stowed in a hidden compartment on the dhow.

    HMAS Toowoomba is deployed to the Middle East Region as part of Operation MANITOU, on patrol under tasking to the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF) and the Pakistan-led Combined Task Force (CTF) 150.

  • 14-241MR Invast Financial Services pays $20,400 penalty for making misleading representations

    Invast Financial Services Pty Ltd (Invast), an Australian financial services (AFS) licensee based in Sydney, has paid $20,400 in penalties after ASIC issued two infringement notices for alleged misleading representations.

    ASIC’s concerns related to statements that appeared on the Invast website in May 2014 and in an email to prospective clients in April 2014.

    The representations on the website contained a link that invited investors to download a demonstration to undertake 'risk-free trading' of contracts for difference (CFDs) for foreign exchange. 

  • 14-236MR Westpac pays $20,400 penalty for misleading statements

    Westpac Banking Corporation (Westpac) has paid $20,400 in penalties after ASIC issued two infringement notices for potentially misleading statements contained in a Product Disclosure Statement (PDS) and other promotional material. 

    Each infringement notice imposed a penalty of $10,200. 

    The statements were made from July 2013 to May 2014 and related to the investment returns on the Westpac Annuity Deposit, a product offered to retail investors planning for retirement. 

  • 14-235MR NAB pays $40,800 penalty for misleading UBank advertisements

    National Australia Bank, the Australian financial services licensee for UBank, has paid $40,800 in penalties after ASIC issued four infringement notices for potentially misleading advertisements.

    The penalties relate to potentially misleading advertising of a UBank home loan product. Each infringement notice imposed a penalty of $10,200. 

  • Second round of $240 million River Murray program open

    The second round of grants under the $240 million South Australian River Murray Sustainability Irrigation Industry Program (3IP) will open for Expressions of Interest on Monday September 22, 2014.

    Agriculture, Food and Fisheries Minister Leon Bignell said the program was one of the biggest ever government investments in a South Australian region.

    "The Australian and South Australian government investment in the Riverland would return vital water to the River Murray," he said.

    "$100 million of funding was offered in Round One, which would deliver an expected return of 20 gigalitres of water to the river. More than $100 million would be available in Round Two.

  • $1.9m boost for South Australian community revegetation program in the Lower Lakes

    A $1.9m grant will provide continued support to the Goolwa to Wellington Local Action Planning (GWLAP) group's Community Revegetation Program for the Lower Lakes region in 2014-15.

    The revegetation program is part of the Coorong Murray Mouth and Lower Lakes (CMMLL) Recovery Project, part of the South Australian Government's Murray Futures program which is funded by the Australian Government.

    "The grant will enable the GWLAP to carry out a range of activities including propagation, planting, community engagement, site maintenance, training and monitoring," said Senator Simon Birmingham, Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment.

  • Chemical weapons used in Syria

    The latest report by the Fact-Finding Mission of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) confirms that a toxic chemical was used as a weapon, systemically and repeatedly, in Syria.

    Investigating the attacks that occurred in Northern Syria as late as 28 August, the report finds with a high degree of confidence that chlorine was used against innocent civilians.

    Evidence shows that helicopters used by the Syrian regime were seen releasing the chemical weapons.

    The Australian Government is deeply disturbed by these findings. I have no doubt that the Syrian regime was responsible for these attacks.

  • Geotechnical drilling underway for western section of East West Link

    The Australian and Victorian Governments today announced the start of geotechnical drilling works for the western section of the East West Link, which will inform construction of the $8–10 billion connection from CityLink to the Western Ring Road.

    Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Jamie Briggs, Victorian Premier Dr Denis Napthine and Victorian Minister for Roads Terry Mulder were on site to inspect the works at the Western Ring Road in Sunshine.

    Mr Briggs said the East West Link project will transform Victoria's transport network and drive economic growth throughout Melbourne.

  • 14-229MR BBY Limited pays $90,000 infringement notice penalty

    BBY Limited (BBY) has paid a penalty of $90,000 to comply with an infringement notice given to it by the Markets Disciplinary Panel (MDP). The penalty was for failing to ensure that its Automated Order Processing (AOP) system had in place organisational and technical resources, including having appropriate automated filters for 30 client accounts and processes to record any changes to the automated filters, without interfering with the efficiency and integrity of the ASX market or the proper functioning of its trading platform. 

    Background and circumstances

    The MDP was satisfied that:

  • Major art projects to commemorate Anzac Centenary

    Today we are announcing funding for eight arts and cultural projects as part of the commemorations for the Anzac Centenary.

    More than $700,000 will be provided to support these projects through the first round of the Australian Government's $2 million Anzac Centenary Arts and Culture Production and Commissioning Fund.

    Funding will support the development and touring of new productions, from theatre and opera to the digital arts, as well as the commissioning of artworks that will bring Australians of all ages together to commemorate this important Centenary.