Tuesday, 23 May 2017 Sydney

Invest In Australia News::

  • Budget to support 7,600 jobs for Tasmanians

    The Hodgman Government’s number one priority is jobs.

    Under our long-term Plan, 6,400 jobs have been created and the unemployment rate has dropped to 5.8 per cent, the second lowest rate of any state in the country, but there is still a lot more to do.

    That’s why this budget will contain a game changing job creation package, so that we can build Tasmania’s future.  It will help support 7,600 jobs right around the State.

  • $50 million in funding for mining towns

    Mining communities can apply for a share of funding from the Resources for Regions program.

    Applications for the funding are open to mining communities in local government areas outside of Sydney.

    Launched in 2012, the funding gives mining communities the opportunity to upgrade:

  • Faster payment times for over 5,000 small businesses

    Thousands of Australian small business suppliers will soon see the benefits of faster payment times after Rio Tinto announced a change to its payment terms.

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) Kate Carnell said it’s a fantastic result for over 5,500 small businesses that trade with Rio Tinto.

    “By changing its payment terms for Australian suppliers under $1 million of expenditure to 30 days, Rio Tinto is taking a positive step forwards and understanding the needs of their small business suppliers,” Ms Carnell said.

  • ACCC proposes to not declare wholesale domestic mobile roaming

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has released its draft decision proposing to not declare a wholesale domestic mobile roaming service.

    “The ACCC has insufficient evidence that declaration will improve the current state of competition overall,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.

  • ACCC puts businesses on notice about 'made in' country of origin claims

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission is urging businesses to review their country of origin labels now to ensure they comply with the Australian Consumer Law.

     “In particular, businesses should review any claims on their product labelling or advertising which suggests that the product was ‘Made in’ a particular country,” ACCC Deputy Chair Dr Michael Schaper said.

  • South Australian Company Awarded $550 000 Project For State’s First Trial Native Oyster Reef

    Port Adelaide based Maritime Constructions has been awarded $550 000 to build South Australia’s first trial shellfish reef.

    Construction of the trial four-hectare shellfish reef will begin in May using a mixture of materials including locally sourced limestone from the Yorke Peninsula and custom made concrete reef structures.

    The native shellfish reef will attract marine life and, over time, is expected to improve fish stocks, enhance recreational fishing opportunities, increase water quality and assist with coastal erosion.

  • Veterans employed in NSW public sector eclipse target

    The NSW Government’s Veterans Employment Program has exceeded its target to employ 200 former Australian Defence Force (ADF) personnel by 2019.

    Just one year after the launch of the Veterans Employment Program, 310 former ADF service men and women have found employment in the NSW public sector.

    About 70 per cent of the new employees have joined the justice and transport sectors, while others have been employed in the areas of health, education and finance.

    Minister for Veterans Affairs David Elliott said the success of the program showed that military skills are highly transferable.

  • ACCC releases quarterly report on the NBN wholesale market

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has released its fifth quarterly National Broadband Network Wholesale Market Indicators Report for the period ending 31 March 2017.

    Key points from the March report:

  • ATO approach to dealing with super guarantee non-compliance

    The ATO recognises the importance of the Superannuation Guarantee (SG) to the community and its vital role in providing for people’s retirement. Deputy Commissioner James O’Halloran said that while the vast majority of the $85.7 billion paid in superannuation each year is paid voluntarily by employers, there are reports of non-compliance from employees.

    “In 2015-16 we undertook around 21,000 cases that addressed SG non-compliance, raising $670 million in SG, including penalties, from a range of reviews and audits” Mr O’Halloran said.

  • Melbourne Fintech Airwallex raises A$17m from Mastercard, Sequoia China and Tencent

    In another endorsement of Victoria's fintech sector, local cross-border payment startup Airwallex has secured A$17 million in funding to continue its global expansion.

    International companies who have invested in Airwallex include MastercardSequoia Capital China, and Chinese web giant Tencent.

  • Victoria is planning a new rail link to Melbourne Airport

    There is significant market interest in building a light or heavy rail link between Melbourne Airport and Southern Cross Station, which are both privately operated.

    The plan will identify the best route for an airport rail link, how much it would cost and how best to fund and deliver it.  It will examine value capture and creation initiatives and potential private sector proposals.

  • ACCC takes action against Ramsay Health Care for alleged anti-competitive conduct

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Ramsay Health Care Australia Pty Limited (Ramsay) for alleged anti-competitive conduct involving misuse of market power and exclusive dealing in the Coffs Harbour region.

    Ramsay operates Baringa Private Hospital and the Coffs Harbour Day Surgery, the only private hospital and private day surgery facilities in the Coffs Harbour region. Coffs Harbour surgeons use operating theatres at Ramsay’s facilities to perform surgical procedures on private patients.

  • $9 million in illegal tobacco seized and destroyed in Northern Victoria

    An illegal tobacco crop with a potential excise value of $9 million has been seized and destroyed by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) as part of an excise operation in rural Victoria last week.

    A tobacco crop spanning 12.5 acres and tobacco leaves weighing 5.4 tonnes were located on a property near Cobram at the Victorian/NSW border.

    The ATO, with the assistance of Victoria Police, seized three trucks, one tractor and a trailer during the operation.

  • CBA's response to ASBFEO Report is much better than ABA's feeble effort

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) is disappointed with the Australian Bankers Association’s (ABA) response to the inquiry into small business loans.

    ASBFEO Kate Carnell said the ABA’s decision not to accept the ASBFEO's definition of a small business loan as any loan under $5million is disappointing.

    The ABA released its response to the ASBFEO Inquiry into Small Business Loans on Friday.

    Ms Carnell said: “The ABA's very restrictive definition would mean that any business with more than 20 employees would not be deemed a small business under the banking code of practice.

  • Warning for promoters of tax schemes involving R&D in the wine industry

    The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science (DIIS) are working to pursue promoters who have been advising grape growers and wine producers to improperly apply for the R&D Tax Incentive.

    These promoters are incorrectly telling growers and producers that the money they pay towards the compulsory Wine Grapes Levy can be claimed under the R&D Tax Incentive in order to secure an R&D tax offset. The levy can usually be claimed by a wine producer as an ordinary business deduction against the wine producer’s assessable income but cannot be used when calculating a refundable or non-refundable R&D tax offset for the wine producer.

  • Commissioner statement on appointments of Commissioners

    I am delighted and honoured to be reappointed as the Commissioner of Taxation for the next seven years. I take my reappointment as a vote of confidence in the ATO’s direction and performance, and it strengthens my resolve to transform the ATO and the experience Australians have when dealing with the tax and superannuation systems.

    We will continue with our directions to administer the tax and super systems for the vast majority of taxpayers who willingly comply with Australian laws; and we will continue to strengthen the strong partnerships and connections we have developed domestically and internationally.

  • ASBFEO calls for Budget policies to drive investment and transparency in small business dealings with big business and banks

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) has proposed key policies for the 2017-18 Federal Budget to kick-start small businesses growth, create more jobs and promote more transparent and fairer relationships with banks and big businesses.

    The ASBFEO Kate Carnell said the Australian Government should consider a range of policies to boost small business, which accounts for 33 per cent of Australia’s GDP and employs about 50 per cent per cent of the workforce.

  • Josh Brown is a future leader in agriculture

    The Hodgman Liberal Government is the strongest supporter of the primary industries and is committed to clear education pathways to help grow Tasmania’s agriculture sector.

    Congratulations to Josh Brown on being awarded the $12,000 Greenham Tasmania Agritas Scholarship for 2017.

    The Tasmanian Agri-Food Plan highlights career pathways, including skills and workforce development, as a key driver for achieving our vision to grow the value of agriculture to $10 billion by 2050.

  • New Technology To Protect Australia's Grain Industries

    A suite of new smart trapping technology is being developed by the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) to protect Australia’s grain industries from airborne pests and diseases.

    Field testing starts this month for the Mobile Jet Spore Sampler – a smart device fixed on top of a vehicle that sucks up air-borne fungal pathogen samples 45 times greater than standard fixed trap technology.

  • Telstra's compliance with Structural Separation Undertaking improving

    Telstra’s compliance with its Structural Separation Undertaking (SSU) has continued to improve reports the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission in a report tabled in Parliament today.

    The SSU implements structural separation through the migration of Telstra’s fixed line voice and broadband services to the national broadband network (NBN). It also requires Telstra to not use wholesale customer information or migration processes to favour its own retail business during the transition to the NBN.

  • New Technology To Protect Australia's Grain Industries

    A suite of new smart trapping technology is being developed by the South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) to protect Australia’s grain industries from airborne pests and diseases.

    Field testing starts this month for the Mobile Jet Spore Sampler – a smart device fixed on top of a vehicle that sucks up air-borne fungal pathogen samples 45 times greater than standard fixed trap technology.

  • New truck wash facilities for regional NSW

    Tenterfield will receive funding for a new truck wash facility from the Fixing Country Truck Washes program. 

    Users of the Tenterfield Livestock Selling Centre Truck Wash will have their average driving distance reduced by about 100 kilometres to the next available truck wash at Glenn Innes.

    The truck wash will provide safety, productivity, and environmental benefits to the local community, including disease control and weed management.

    It will also provide livestock carriers with a quicker and easier way to wash-out and re-load their trucks.

  • Inflation rises 0.5 per cent in the March quarter 2017

    The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.5 per cent in the March quarter 2017, according to the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) figures.

    This follows a rise of 0.5 per cent in the December quarter 2016.

    The most significant price rises this quarter are automotive fuel (+5.7 per cent), medical and hospital services (+1.6 per cent) and new dwelling purchase by owner-occupiers (+1.0 per cent). These rises are partially offset by falls in Furnishings, household equipment and services (-1.0 per cent) and Recreation and culture (-0.7 per cent). 

    The CPI rose 2.1 per cent through the year to March quarter 2017.

  • Lord Mayor Calls for National Population Strategy

    Lord Mayor Martin Haese is calling for a National Population Strategy to address the inequity of population growth in Australia.

    The Lord Mayor has welcomed ABS data released showing City of Adelaide Estimated Residential Growth (ERG) of 2.1 per cent over the past twelve months, outstripping the national ERG of 1.4 per cent.

    “While this number falls short of previous targets set by both Council and the State Government for the city, considering the enormous economic transition we are making to be a globally competitive 21st century economy, we are doing well; but can do better,” said Martin.