The Government has re-appointed Mr Paul Binsted and appointed Mr Lucio di Bartolomeo as non-executive directors of the Moorebank Intermodal Company (MIC) for terms of three years each.
Mr Binsted brings strong finance, investment banking and project management skills to the Board. Mr Binsted’s second term as a board member will provide continuity and stability as the project moves into the construction and delivery stage. Mr Binsted’s executive and board experience includes Chairman of Sydney Ports Corporation and the State Rail Authority of NSW. He is also currently the Chairman of Ariande Capital and a Director of the Clean Energy Finance Corporation.
The Turnbull Government has accepted all 28 recommendations of the Watt Review into research policy and funding, and has already made significant commitments to stimulate innovation and improve collaboration between Australian researchers and industry.
Minister for Education and Training Simon Birmingham said the Turnbull Government’s response builds on the $1.1 billion National Innovation and Science Agenda to strengthen Australia’s research system, encourage collaboration between universities and business, and to better translate research outcomes into economic and social benefits.
Minister Birmingham said the comprehensive review, led by Dr Ian Watt AO, would be a cornerstone for Australia’s approach to innovation.
The services sector is an important part of the Australian economy accounting for the vast majority of Australian output and employment. In terms of exports, however, services, comprise a more modest share – almost 20 per cent (or $63 billion) of gross exports in 2014-15 (of $319 billion).
Today’s announcement of an enhanced Singapore-Australia free trade agreement (SAFTA) represents the biggest step-forward in over a decade in our economic relationship with Singapore and will make it easier for Australian companies and our services providers to do business in the region, according to PwC’s Asia Practice Leader Andrew Parker.
“Today’s announcement delivers on one of the major commitments in the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership (CSP) agreement made in June 2015 between the Australian and Singaporean Governments,” Mr Parker said. “It is a key milestone in the path to putting the Singapore-Australia relationship on par with the relationship we have with New Zealand.
Australia’s big four banks have posted slowing results in their 2016 half year announcements. EY’s analysis of the half year results of the major banks shows headline cash earnings after tax of $14.8 billion, a decrease of 2.5% from the prior comparative period.
Profits have been affected by higher capital requirements and rising bad debt charges. Evolving regulation is likely to result in further increases to capital and funding costs. Return on equity is also lower across the banks.
Subjects: PaTH internships, youth employment, funding to reduce violence against women and their children
JON FAINE: When the Federal Liberal Treasurer Scott Morrison announced his budget the other night one of the key new initiatives was to provide for significant funding to create internships, $4 an hour on top of your dole, internships for hundreds of thousands perhaps of young Australians who are trying to get back into the workforce. Yesterday we had a quick chat to Dimity Mannering from Interns Australia who had this to say about her concerns on it.
The Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA)* has announced an investment of A$54 million in nine university-industry joint research projects on renewable energy technologies.
Initial funding of A$17 million from the Australian government will be augmented by leveraged contributions from the public and private sectors.
ARENA’s CEO, Ivor Frischknecht, said that the projects are focused on delivering commercially viable solutions aimed at solving a number of industry challenges.
Australia’s Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, and China’s Premier, Li Keqiang, have announced a A$100 million innovation partnership for a joint science and technology precinct at University of New South Wales in Sydney.
The new precinct is the first such partnership outside China and aligns with the aims of Australia’s National Innovation and Science Agenda.
The University’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Ian Jacobs, said that the partnership ‘has the potential to boost the nation’s innovation system’.
The Chinese conglomerate, Legend Holdings, has invested in one of Australia’s largest seafood processing, wholesale and export businesses – the West Australian-based Kailis Bros.
Under the arrangement, Kailis Bros and Legend Holdings will form a larger, newly-capitalised joint venture called KB Foods, which will be 90 per cent owned by Legend and 10 per cent owned by the Kailis family.
Australia's 2016-17 Federal Budget sets out a long term economic plan to ensure Australia continues to successfully transition from the mining investment boom to a stronger, more diversified new economy.
The Budget was handed down by the Treasurer, Scott Morrison, on 3 May 2016, who confirmed that Australia is growing faster than all major advanced economies and is well above the OECD average.
COSBOA praised the budget announcement yesterday, declaring it a win for small businesses of Australia. CEO for COSBOA, Peter Strong, credited Scott Morrison, Treasurer, and Kelly O’Dwyer, Small Business Minister and Assistant Treasurer saying, "The economy is in now a better position to deal with and take advantage of change."
Explaining further what the budget means to small business, Mr Strong continued:
"The big ticket item is that the threshold for determining what is considered a small business has been raised to $10 million annual turnover. This creates a change immediately for government support actions around tax breaks, instant tax write offs and other initiatives.”
Australia’s largest ever business mission, Australia Week in China (AWIC) 2016, was held across 12 key cities and included more than 140 trade, investment, education and tourism events focused on enhancing commercial ties with China.
Trade and Investment Minister Steven Ciobo led a delegation of more than 1,000 Australian business leaders to AWIC 2016. Held from 11–15 April, they attended events in Beijing, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Shenzhen, Xiamen, Shenyang, Chengdu, Hangzhou, Wuzhen, Suzhou, Jiaxing and Shanghai.
On Saturday 30 April, three important strategies to underpin Australia’s international education sector were jointly released by the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Hon Julie Bishop MP and the Minister for Tourism and International Education, The Hon Richard Colbeck.
The 2016 Budget is the Turnbull Government’s economic plan to ensure Australia continues to successfully transition from the mining investment boom to a stronger, more diversified new economy.
This economic plan is the foundation on which we can build a brighter, more secure future, in a stronger, new economy with more jobs.
Australians know it is no easy task to secure jobs and growth in a highly competitive, volatile and uncertain global economy.
Despite the challenges and the naysayers, we are already making it happen.
Our economy last year grew by almost $40 billion and added almost 300,000 jobs.
There have been more than 50,000 new jobs for young people in the last eighteen months.
Michael Rowland: Okay let’s go to the other hot button issue of the forthcoming Federal Election campaign, that is education funding. The Government announced yesterday that it will increase funding in tomorrow’s budget but the pledge falls well short of Labor’s commitment under the Gonski plan. Education Minister Simon Birmingham joins us now from Parliament House. Minister good morning.
Simon Birmingham: Good morning Michael great to be with you.
Kieran Gilbert: With me now though to discuss the Government’s education funding plans and the rest of the politics of the day at the start of this very important week is the Education Minister Simon Birmingham. Let’s start first of all on this plan that you’ve announced yesterday.
Labor says it’s coming in at $3.5 billion less for those out years, from 2018 to 2020 in terms of funding for schools. It’s a lot of money a billion dollars-plus every year for the schools that you’re not going to be providing that Labor says they would.
A few years ago, Australian neurology resident Thomas Oxley set out to design a device that uses brain waves to power prosthetic limbs. Today, Oxley’s revolutionary invention is about to enter human trials, giving hope that millions of people paralysed by injury or stroke will soon be able to walk again.
Oxley’s futuristic device – a tiny stent-electrode or ‘stentrode’ – also promises to predict and halt epileptic seizures and assist people with a range of conditions, from motor neurone and Parkinson’s diseases to compulsive disorders and depression.
Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash and Assistant Minister for Cities Angus Taylor will ensure the Coalition Government's Smart Cities Plan is a plan for the regions.
Minister Nash said while regional cities already offered great lifestyle, short travel times, affordable housing and clean air, it was important government supported regional cities for greater growth.
"Regional cities make a massive contribution to the national economy, and there is more room to grow. The Smart Cities Plan will drive economic growth and create new jobs in regional Australia.
The Smart Cities Plan includes:
Senator the Hon. Mathias Cormann
Minister for Finance
Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate
29 April 2016
The Government has appointed a new whole-of-Government panel for air travel services for the next five years. The new panel consists of 18 airlines, including:
This week’s readings include discussion of policies that will influence different markets’ integration into global value chains.
Australia's genetics industry will play a critical role in delivering a profitable future for agriculture Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Barnaby Joyce, said today at a Genetics Forum held at the University of New England (UNE).
Minister Joyce hailed the genetic industry's increasing importance to agricultural productivity and highlighted the recent market access gains achieved by the Australian Government.
"Before a cow can have a calf it needs sperm, and bovine semen is a market opportunity for Australia. The genetic forum in Armidale allows a wide discussion on a whole range of gametes," Minister Joyce said.
The Australian Government has announced appointments to the Australian Medical Research Advisory Board, set-up to advise how funds held in the Medical Research Future Fund should be deployed.
The MRFF – the largest investment in health and medical research ever made in Australia and a core part of the government’s health reform and innovation agenda – is expected to eventually provide funding in the vicinity of A$1 billion a year.
One of the most discussed issues facing the current global economic outlook is the status of China’s economic transition to a new growth model and a more market-based economy, along with the consequences of this shift for the world economy in general and China’s trading partners in particular1. The latest IMF forecast, for example, highlights the ‘sizeable global spillovers’ from China’s new growth path that have already occurred through the trade channel, both directly (via the impact on China’s demand for imports) and indirectly (via the impact on commodity prices, for example).
The Prime Minister and the Minister for Women today launched a pilot mentoring programme to support women in the building and construction industry.
Women account for just 11 per cent of the total construction workforce and they leave the industry at a rate almost 40 per cent higher than men.
Without a commitment to greater gender equality, the building and construction sector is missing out on attracting and retaining the best talent.
Diverse workplaces have been proven to be more productive and deliver better returns to the bottom line.