Tuesday, 19 June 2018 Sydney
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Invest In Australia News::

  • ACCC focusses on energy, broadband, net economy and financial services in 2018

    Chairman Rod Sims has today announced the ACCC’s compliance and enforcement priorities for 2018 at a CEDA event in Sydney.

    This year, the regulator will focus on consumer issues in broadband services and energy, competition in the financial services and commercial construction sectors, systemic consumer guarantee issues, and conduct that may contravene the new misuse of market power and concerted practices provisions.

  • ACCC appeals Cussons decision

    The ACCC has appealed from the Federal Court’s decision late last year to dismiss the ACCC’s proceedings against PZ Cussons Australia Pty Ltd (Cussons).

    The ACCC took action against Cussons in 2013, alleging Cussons had engaged in cartel conduct by arriving at, and giving effect to, an understanding with two other laundry detergent manufacturers to cease supplying standard concentrate laundry detergents in early 2009, and supply only ultra concentrates from that time. 

  • Australians on notice to keep their receipts

    The ATO is warning taxpayers they will be paying close attention to claims for ‘other’ work-related expenses this year, and is reminding people to keep appropriate records.

    Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said that last year 6.7 million taxpayers claimed a record $7.9 billion in deductions for ‘other work-related expenses’. “It’s a significant amount of money and Australians expect us to ensure that people are not over-claiming”.

    This year the ATO is shining a spotlight on ‘other’ deductions. Legitimate ‘other work related expenses’ can include home office, union fees, mobile phone and internet, overtime meals and tools and equipment.

  • Growing the food industry in Melbourne

    A new food manufacturing industry group in the norther regions of Melbourne, Australia, will strengthen food and beverage manufacturing and investment in Victoria.

  • Sydney’s red hot start to Chinese New Year

    The Sydney Harbour Bridge decked out in auspicious red and a glowing eight-metre-high guard dog unleashed the start of the biggest celebrations of the Lunar New Year outside Asia.

    Sydney officially welcomed the Year of the Dog this evening, launching the City of Sydney’s 22nd Chinese New Year Festival in spectacular style.

    A traditional lion dance and eye dotting ceremony below the giant animated dog lantern at the Sydney Opera House kicked off activities around the harbour foreshore.

  • Apprentices kicking goals at Moorabbin Reserve

    Victorian apprentices are kicking goals and learning valuable skills on the $30 million re-development of St Kilda Football Club’s Moorabbin Reserve thanks to the Victorian Government’s Major Project Skills Guarantee.

    Funded by the Victorian Government, St Kilda, the AFL, Kingston City Council and local sporting leagues, the re-development will include a training facility, indoor netball and basketball courts, the club’s headquarters and a retail hub.

  • Connecting Melbourne with UK and France for innovation and growth

    Melbourne’s position and capability as a major centre for innovation and manufacturing will be enhanced through closer partnerships with France and UK - the focus of discussions with Australia's Victorian Government.

    Melbourne’s capabilities in digital technology, cyber security and defence are the focus of investment discussions between the Victorian Government and business and government organisations in the UK and France.

  • ABS reveals insights into Australia’s Chinese population on Chinese New Year

    Like the fireworks on Sydney Harbour every 31 December, Chinese New Year is one of the most colourful events on the global calendar. 

    The ABS’s most recent Estimated Resident Population figures show that there are 526,040 Australian residents born in China, up from 387,420 over the previous five years. 

    In 2016 – the Year of the Monkey – the Census of Population and Housing found that China remains one of the top countries of birth for Australian residents, trailing behind only Australia, England and New Zealand. Over the past 20 years, Chinese-born residents have overtaken other countries of birth, such as Italy, Vietnam and Greece, highlighting changes in Australia’s migration intake. 

  • Half a million Australians physically assaulted in 2016-17

    Nearly half a million Australians aged 15 years and over (454,900 or 2.4 per cent) have experienced one or more incidents of physical assault in the last 12 months, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

    Results from the 2016-17 Crime Victimisation survey found that men and women experienced physical assault at a similar rate: 2.4 per cent of men (228,700) and 2.3 per cent of women (226,900), with just over half reporting the most recent incident to police (52 per cent of men and 56 per cent of women). There was no change in the rate of victimisation or reporting to police since the survey was last run in 2015-16.

  • Transport Project Reaps $80 Million In Industry Benefits

    Primary producers and road transport operators have received estimated industry benefits of at least $80 million from the 90 day Improving Road Transport for the Agriculture Industry project.



    The benefit figure has more than doubled from the original estimate of $36 million in 2016 and is expected to further rise as route extensions and last mile access issues are addressed across the State.

    Following on from the success and momentum of the first project, a second survey was undertaken last year to identify any remaining issues.

  • Criminal cartel proceedings commenced against Country Care and its managers

    Following an investigation by the ACCC, criminal charges have been laid against The Country Care Group Pty Ltd (Country Care), its Managing Director, Robert Hogan, and a former employee, Cameron Harrison. 

    The charges relate to alleged cartel conduct involving assistive technology products used in rehabilitation and aged care, including beds and mattresses, wheelchairs and walking frames. 

    Country Care is based in Mildura, Victoria.

    The charges are listed for mention before the Magistrates’ Court of Victoria in Mildura on 14 March 2018.

  • Female labour force participation reaches all-time high

    Australia's female labour force participation rate reached an historic high of 60.5 per cent in January 2018, while the overall participation rate of 65.6 per cent in January was the highest since February 2011, according to latest figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today.

    Program Manager for the ABS Labour and Income Branch Bjorn Jarvis said the trend unemployment rate for January remained steady at 5.5 per cent, where it has hovered for the past seven months.

    "Australia's labour force participation rate continues to strengthen, reaching a new high for females in January and a seven-year high overall," Mr Jarvis said. 

    Employment and hours

  • Autumn Fruits Continues To Grow On Good Ideas

    From the heart of one of South Australia’s most iconic food bowls, Glossop fruit growers, Bill Efrosinis and Sandy Iosefellis, are redefining what it means to turn one good idea into another – and another.



    A decision in 2014 to embrace what they’ve dubbed ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ funding opportunities via the South Australian River Murray Sustainability Program (SARMS) has meant transformation has become the hallmark of their Riverland business.

    Their latest business case for Autumn Fruits takes the one good idea premise to another level entirely.

  • One-stop-shop for dispute resolution welcomed by Ombudsman

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) welcomes the passing of legislation to establish the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) today.

    Ombudsman Kate Carnell said she is particularly pleased with the more flexible definition of a small business as fewer than 100 employees and a rise in the compensation cap for agricultural small business of up to $2 million.

    “And is good to see that a small business will be able to seek resolution of a dispute where the credit facility is up to $5 million and potentially receive compensation of up to $1 million,” Ms Carnell said.

  • ATO statement on corporate tax

    Australia has one of the strongest corporate tax systems in the world. We have one of the strongest compliance programs which, on any measure, is as good as anywhere in the world.

    The ATO wants the community to have trust and confidence that the ATO is taking action to ensure the largest companies are required to pay the right amount of tax on their Australian profits and most do so voluntarily. The ATO is better equipped than ever before to fulfil its commitment to further increasing the level of compliance by large companies.

  • Landmark Women@Work Conference to boost workplace equality

    Businesses are invited to register their interest in being part of a landmark conference about gender pay equity.

    The Women@Work Conference on Wednesday 21 March will provide a platform to act on the gender pay gap and the economic and workforce consequences of persistent gender inequity for Victorian workers and businesses, in the lead up to Equal Pay Day in September 2018.

  • Don't friend a scammer this Valentine's Day

    The ACCC is warning people to be careful about who they ‘friend’ online this Valentine’s Day with stats showing people are most likely to be preyed upon by dating and romance scammers on social media sites.

    Australians reported losses of $20.5 million to Scamwatch from dating and romance scams in 2017 with more than 3700 reports. These numbers are just the tip of the iceberg. Women lost nearly twice as much money as men and people aged 45 and over are most likely to be targeted.

  • Letore ordered to compensate migrant victims

    The Federal Court has ordered Letore Pty Ltd (Letore) to compensate victims of a permanent residency program, which was operated by Clinica Internationale Pty Ltd (Clinica), for amounts they paid to Clinica.

    In 2016, the Federal Court found that Clinica had engaged in unconscionable conduct and made false or misleading representations about the program.

    On 9 February 2018 , the Court held that Letore and a related company, Swishette Pty Ltd, were knowingly concerned in the contravening conduct of Clinica. At the time of the conduct, Letore’s sole director, Mr Radovan Laski, also controlled Clinica.

  • High expectations of Royal Commission by small business

    On this, the first day of the Royal Commission into Misconduct in the Banking, Superannuation and Financial Services Industry, the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman says now is the time for small businesses that have suffered from questionable conduct by the banks to have their say.

    “While we are pleased that banks have made changes to small business loan contracts, there is still more work to be done,” said Ombudsman Kate Carnell.

    “The Commission needs to probe past dispute cases where small businesses were often forced to close and people lost their jobs, and provide them with an opportunity to tell their stories.

  • Chinese online retailer JD.com sets up shop in Melbourne

    Victoria’s businesses will have access to millions more international customers now that one of China’s largest online retailers is opening its regional headquarters in Melbourne.

    JD.com has over 266 million customer accounts making it one of the largest e-commerce companies in China. The company’s presence in Victoria will help local businesses connect with new customers.

    The company operates seven fulfilment centres and more than 400 warehouses, covering 2,830 counties and districts throughout China. It sells everything from vitamins and electronics to clothing and books.

  • Safety testing starts for Sydney Metro trains

    The first Sydney Metro train is undergoing testing on the tracks ahead of services starting in 2019.

    The state-of-the-art train is currently at Sydney Metro HQ at Rouse Hill, where the brakes, acceleration, passenger information displays, lighting and door operations are being tested.

    The train testing will expand to Cudgegong Road station in Rouse Hill and on to the skytrain(external link). It will eventually run through the new twin 15km tunnels between Bella Vista and Epping(external link).

  • Key tax tips for accommodation sharing

    The ATO is reminding taxpayers who rent out all or part of their home through accommodation sharing services to ensure they understand their tax obligations.

    Declare income

    The ATO’s Deputy Commissioner for Small Business, Deborah Jenkins, said the most important thing to remember is that all income earned from renting out all or part of a property needs to be declared.

    “It doesn’t matter if it’s only for one week of the year, or a few weeks here and there, every dollar needs to be declared,” Ms Jenkins said. 

  • Migration bills another burden on small business

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, says the legislation put forward around the skilled migration scheme is just another blow for small businesses.

    Commenting on a Senate Committee report released today, Ms Carnell said increasing the cost of temporary migration for work visas will add to the angst already involved in the complex and time-consuming process of securing a suitable worker.

    “We know that small businesses contribute significantly to the training of their own workforce and are more than happy to do this,” Ms Carnell said.

  • $11.1 Million To Support Australian Vineyard Profitability And Management

    A new $11.1 million research and development partnership between the State Government and Wine Australia will seek to improve the profitability of the grape and wine sector.



    The five year deal will see Wine Australia and PIRSA's South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) investigate disease management, vineyard resilience and performance of different varieties.