Sunday, 24 March 2019 Sydney
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Invest In Australia News::

  • Gas Industry reforms to reduce costs and improve safety

    The Gas Industry and Gas Safety Bill, which cuts red tape and streamlines the administration of Tasmania’s gas supply industry, reducing costs and improving safety, has been passed by both houses of Government.

    Gas remains an important energy source for our State and is a significant cost of living issue for many Tasmanian households and businesses.

  • RUBBER VINE FOUND IN THE NT GULF

    An infestation of the declared weed rubber vine (Cryptostegia grandiflora) has been found within the Northern Territory’s Gulf region.

    There are currently no other known rubber vine infestations in the Territory.

    Department of Environment and Natural Resources A/Regional Weed Officer for the Katherine District Susan King said rubber vine presents a serious threat to pastoral productivity and the environment.

  • Ombudsman welcomes small business telecommunications dispute team

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell today welcomed the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman’s (TIO) announcement that it will form a Small Business Team.

    “From 1 April 2019, small businesses who are in dispute with their telephone, mobile or internet services provider will have a specific team to contact,” Ms Carnell said.

    “Connectivity is key to a business’ success. With 95% of small businesses online, a disruption or complete lack of connection can affect their sales, marketing, ordering and invoicing processes.

  • Integrity Commission rejects Labor’s politically-motivated witch hunt

    The Integrity Commission tabled a report to Parliament dismissing allegations made by the Labor Party against Minister Courtney, the Secretary of the Department of Premier & the Cabinet, and myself.

    This brings to an end yet another politically motivated witch-hunt by Labor and a shameless attempt to use the Integrity Commission as a political weapon – the very tactic that the Commission has warned about.

    The Integrity Commission has found Rebecca White’s and Labor’s claims against Minister Courtney to be baseless.

  • Public Sector workers access to compensation for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

    Nation-leading legislation introduced today will make it straightforward for public sector workers to access work-related compensation for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

    The amendment to the Workers Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 will make Tasmania the first jurisdiction in Australia to introduce presumption for PTSD suffered by public sector workers and volunteer first responders.

    The changes will reverse the onus of proof for public sector workers and volunteer first responders claiming compensation for PTSD.

  • Ombudsman welcomes job system overhaul to help small businesses employ

    Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell today welcomed the Coalition Government’s commitment to transform Australia’s employment services model to deliver better outcomes for job seekers and employers.

    “Small businesses find the current system difficult to use and, as a result, rarely use jobactive providers to fill vacant positions,” Ms Carnell said.

    “The proposed new model will address one of the biggest problems small businesses face when trying to hire new staff – finding job seekers with relevant skills to suit their business needs.

  • REISSUE: Backing in sustainable nature tourism

    Tasmania has an unrivalled, and spectacular natural environment which people from all over the world, as well as many Tasmanians, want to experience. It is an environment we all richly respect, and want to preserve.

    For many years Tasmania has demonstrated that we are able to offer world-class experiences by allowing for sensible, sustainable tourism experiences in our wilderness areas. This is evident at Cradle Mountain, the Overland Track, the Three Capes Track, at Freycinet Lodge or at Pumphouse Point.

  • ABALONE POACHING PARTY STUNG WITH $5,000 FINE

    A party of six recreational fishers have been fined over $5,000 for trying to poach abalone with a potential commercial value of $1,500.

    The group were detected by Fisheries Officers as they were leaving the water at Cape Northumberland, near Port MacDonnell in the South East.

    It is alleged the group had in their possession 53 black lip abalone of which 48 were under the legal-size limit of 13cm.

  • Enterprise Ireland now with an office in Melbourne

    On 13 March Invest Victoria had the pleasure of hosting an Advisory Panel meeting for Enterprise Ireland, and the opening of their new office here in Melbourne.

    For Great Britain and Northern Ireland, there remains uncertainty around Brexit.  However, in true Irish spirit and defiance of such a challenging time, a group of 45 Irish businesses joined Enterprise Ireland in a trade and investment mission to Australia.

  • ATO confirms approach to research and development tax incentive

    The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is aware of the announcementExternal Link by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia regarding their research and development (R&D) tax incentive disputes with the ATO and Innovation and Science Australia (ISA). ISA has legislative oversight of the (R&D) tax incentive, which is administered jointly by the ATO and AusIndustry in the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science (DIIS).

  • Illicit drug offenders decrease for second year

    The number of offenders proceeded against for Illicit drug offences has decreased for the second year, according to the latest figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

    ABS Director of Crime and Justice Statistics, William Milne, said there were more than 78,000 offenders with a principal offence involving Illicit drugs proceeded against by police in 2017–18, a decrease of almost 3,000 compared to the previous year.

    “Over the past couple of years we’ve seen a decrease in the principal offence of Illicit drugs, with most offenders proceeded against for possession or use of drugs rather than the more serious offences of dealing, trafficking, or manufacturing,” Mr Milne said.

  • NAB steps up on definition of small business loan facility

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, has congratulated the National Australia Bank’s lead in expanding its definition of small business to capture total lending of up to $5 million; higher than the aggregate $3 million in the Banking Code of Practice 2019.

    “It’s definitely a step in the right direction, although we continue to call on the Australian Banking Association (ABA) to adopt the Hayne recommendation in full, which is:

  • ACCC authorises WA and NT LNG producers

    The ACCC has authorised Chevron, INPEX, Shell and Woodside (ASX:WPL) to coordinate maintenance activities at their LNG facilities in Western Australia and Northern Territory. 

    The four LNG producers compete for a limited pool of skilled contractors and specialised equipment to conduct scheduled maintenance.

    “LNG producers can now schedule maintenance together without risking breaching competition laws, reducing concurrent work at their facilities. This will improve efficiency and maximise LNG production,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

  • Draft decision for joint marketing of NT gas

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has released a draft determination proposing to authorise joint gas marketing arrangements between Central Petroleum (ASX: CTP) and Macquarie Mereenie.

    Central and Macquarie are joint venture partners at the Mereenie oil and gas field, which is located in the Amadeus Basin in the Northern Territory, approximately 250 km west of Alice Springs.

    In order to allow the development of Mereenie gas as soon as possible, the ACCC has granted interim authorisation, which allows the parties to begin negotiating joint supply agreements with customers pending the ACCC’s final determination.

  • Woolworths allegedly misleads on environmental claims

    The ACCC has taken action against Woolworths Limited (Woolworths) in the Federal Court, alleging that the environmental representations Woolworths made about its ‘W Select eco’ picnic products were false, misleading or deceptive, in contravention of the Australian Consumer Law.

    From November 2014 to November 2017, Woolworths labelled disposable bowls, plates and cutlery in its ‘W Select eco’ line as ‘Biodegradable and Compostable’. The ACCC alleges that by these labels Woolworths represented to consumers that the products would biodegrade and compost within a reasonable period of time when disposed of in domestic compost bins or conventional landfill sites in Australia.

  • Oyster Virus Detected In Port River

    Primary Industries and Regions South Australia (PIRSA) advises that the Pacific Oyster Mortality Syndrome (POMS) virus has been detected in feral Pacific Oysters in the Port River. At this stage POMS has not been detected in South Australian oyster farming areas.



    Samples taken during routine surveillance of the Port River area detected the POMS virus. Additional testing of these samples, carried out by the Australian Animal Health Laboratory (Geelong), confirmed the results on 28 February 2018.

  • Draft decision on Port of Brisbane and Carnival agreement

    The ACCC is proposing to allow arrangements between the Port of Brisbane and Carnival Cruise Line that will support the development of a new $158 million dedicated cruise liner terminal in Brisbane.

    The parties have sought authorisation for an agreement between them under which Carnival will be bound by take or pay obligations for the new terminal, meaning Carnival will pay a fixed yearly amount to the Port over the term of the 15 year agreement.

  • ACCC flags concerns about Saputo-Murray Goulburn deal

    The ACCC says its concerns around the proposed acquisition of the assets of Murray Goulburn (ASX:MGC) by Saputo are solely in relation to Murray Goulburn’s Koroit dairy plant in western Victoria, in particular the impact the acquisition will have on competition for farmers’ milk in the area.

    The ACCC outlined its concerns in a Statement of Issues paper today and is seeking responses from interested parties by 13 March.

  • Lord Mayor Backs Tram Extensions

    Since early 2016, this group has been working together to advocate for tram extensions, with the Lord Mayor hosting a light rail summit at Adelaide Town Hall in April 2016. Council subsequently affirmed its support for an expanded tram network in May 2016.

  • Victorian lamb on the menu in China

    China’s expanding middle class is dishing up export opportunities for Victorian lamb producers. 

    While sitting down to a Sunday lamb roast is a well-established tradition for many Australians, what’s less known is that demand for this much-loved meat is on the rise in China.

    Australian lamb is tipped to be served in greater numbers in China in the coming years, thanks to growing demand for Western proteins being driven by an expanding middle class, whose ranks are expected to top 850 million by 2030. *

  • Fintech business lenders move to increase transparency

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, FinTech Australia and theBankDoctor.org today joined forces to release a report which outlines the steps taken by fintech lenders to increase transparency and disclosure.

    The report, Fintech lending to small and medium sized enterprises: Improving transparency and disclosure, analyses the different approaches to disclosure across the fintech industry and makes recommendations on best practice and identifies commitments to action.

  • Ombudsman supports primary producer loan changes

    The Private Member’s Bill introduced by Rebekha Sharkie MP would provide legislated protection to small family businesses in a capital intensive industry, such as farming, Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell said today.

    The Banking Amendment (Rural Finance Reform) Bill 2018 was introduced to the Lower House yesterday, requesting greater transparency and longer notice periods when lenders make decisions on the conditions of primary producer loan agreements.

    “During our Small Business Loan Inquiry, we consulted with a number of small business owners involved in primary production,” Ms Carnell said.

  • Sydney’s new light rail system has reached a new milestone with a tram being tested along Alison Road in Randwick for the first time.

    The first phase of testing will allow engineers to monitor how the tram performs and prepare it for operations.

    Testing will initially be carried out at night with the tram operating at low speeds. Daytime testing will start in the coming months.

    Minister for Transport and Infrastructure Andrew Constance said the first tram test for the project was a milestone marking the next phase of the project.

    “We know Sydney customers are going to be just as excited as us when the new trams start running from the CBD to Randwick and Kingsford,” Mr Constance said.

  • Netgear likely misled customers

    Networking equipment manufacturer Netgear will provide remedies and refunds to customers who were misled by its warranty and technical support representations, following action by the ACCC.

    From June 2016, Netgear incorrectly told customers they could not receive a remedy for a faulty product, unless they were covered by Netgear’s manufacturer’s warranty or they purchased a technical support contract.

    “Netgear admits that it is likely to have misled customers about the remedies they were legally entitled to under the Australian Consumer Law,” ACCC Commissioner Sarah Court said.