Saturday, 22 July 2017 Sydney
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Invest In Australia News::

  • Taking time to get your tax right

    Tax time tees off this weekend and the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is reminding taxpayers to take their time to get it right.

    Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said 2.8 million people lodged their tax return in July last year, which is 22 per cent of all tax returns lodged for 2015-16.

    “We know that some taxpayers like to get in early and lodge in the first month of tax time, but our analysis shows that if you lodge in July, you’re far more likely to make a mistake by leaving out some of your income,” Ms Anderson said.

  • New international day recognises importance of small business

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell, has welcomed United Nations recognition of small business as a driver of employment and economic development.

    Tuesday 27 June has been designated Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises Day.

    A resolution was adopted unanimously at the UN General Assembly in April.

    The assembly noted that more than 95 per cent of enterprises in the world are micro, small and medium-sized and they account for about 60 per cent of international private sector employment.

  • Fintech small business lenders support research survey

    New research will aim to establish current trends and best practice in the growing fintech lending market to small and medium-size enterprises (SME).

    Fintech small business lenders will be surveyed as part of a collaborative research project by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) with industry organisation FinTech Australia and independent SME finance expert Neil Slonim from theBankDoctor.org.

  • Australian Competition Tribunal decision on Tabcorp-Tatts merger

    The Australian Competition Tribunal has formally made its determination granting merger authorisation for Tabcorp to acquire Tatts and has today published its reasons for decision.

    In November 2016 Tabcorp sought informal merger clearance from the ACCC to acquire Tatts.

    Shortly after the ACCC released its paper seeking views on potential competition issues in March 2017, Tabcorp withdrew its application for informal clearance and instead lodged an application with the Tribunal for authorisation of its proposed acquisition of Tatts. 

  • ACCC proposes to grant bulk wheat Port Code exemptions at the Port of Geelong and Port Adelaide

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has released draft determinations proposing to exempt Riordan Grain Services and Semaphore Container Services from certain parts of the mandatory Bulk Wheat Code in relation to their respective operations at the Port of Geelong and Port Adelaide.

    “Riordan and Semaphore will both face significant competitive constraint from larger operations. The ACCC’s preliminary view is that it is appropriate to grant exemptions to these smaller players,” ACCC Commissioner Cristina Cifuentes said.

  • ACCC won't oppose Cabcharge buying Yellow Cabs in Queensland

    The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission will not oppose the proposed acquisition by Cabcharge Australia Limited (ASX:CAB) of Yellow Cabs (Queensland) Pty Ltd.

    Yellow Cabs is one of the two large taxi networks in Brisbane, with a market share of approximately 50 per cent. While Cabcharge does not currently operate any taxi networks in Queensland; it does provide non-cash payment services and equipment.

  • Taking care of business

    The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is encouraging small businesses to get a head start on the new financial year by taking care of business now.

    Assistant Commissioner Deborah Jenkins says that thousands of small businesses register every month, which means there are a lot of new business owners about to have their first tax time experience.

    “We understand that around 50 per cent of small businesses come under financial pressure within the first year, and one of the biggest issues is cash flow,” she said.

  • Tax Time 2017 work-related expenses audio and video grabs

    One of the ATO’s main focus areas this year is incorrect claims for work-related expenses.

    These recordings feature Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson discussing why it’s important to know what can and can’t claim before you lodge and the three golden rules for making work-related expense claims. The audio file (WAV 11.7 MB) and video fileExternal Linkare available for media use.

    Audio transcript

  • Don't be a dummy with your deductions

    The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is warning taxpayers to avoid incorrect claims for work-related expenses at tax time this year.

    Assistant Commissioner Kath Anderson said the ATO is using real-time data to compare taxpayers with others in similar occupations and income brackets, to identify higher-than-expected claims related to expenses including vehicle, travel, internet and mobile phone, and self-education.

    “It is important to know what you’re eligible to claim before lodging your tax return and to make sure you don’t claim more than you’re entitled to,” Ms Anderson said.

  • Regional Growth Fund

    Councils, industry and community organisations in regional NSW are encouraged to apply for funding for their local infrastructure projects.

    The $1.3 billion Regional Growth Fund includes:

  • Small businesses encouraged to claim instant asset write-off

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman has encouraged small business operators to take advantage of the Government’s instant asset write-off extension.

    More businesses are now eligible to buy equipment (new or second hand) up to $20,000 and write it off immediately after legislation passed the Senate. Multiple claims can be made under the program.

    Small business has also been redefined for tax purposes as having a turnover less than $10 million, up from $2 million.

    Ombudsman Kate Carnell welcomed the changes.

  • Small business needs reliable power and stable prices

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman has called for a bipartisan approach to energy policy to avoid job losses and business closures.

    Ombudsman Kate Carnell says the small business sector faces being crippled by rising electricity costs and reduced reliability if the status quo remains.

    Ms Carnell said both sides of politics should endorse the Finkel Report and adopt its recommendations.

    “Business as usual is no longer an option. Business as usual is lack of reliable power and exponential price increases,” she said.

  • Faster and cheaper approvals for home owners

    Changes to the Housing Code will make it easier, cheaper and faster for home owners in NSW to get approval for a new home or renovation.

    The new Housing Code will simplify the planning rules for homes approved under a fast-tracked complying development pathway.

    For the first time, the code will include easy-to-follow diagrams, making it easier to understand the building standards that must be met when building or renovating.

  • Small business needs reliable power and stable prices

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman has called for a bipartisan approach to energy policy to avoid job losses and business closures.

    Ombudsman Kate Carnell says the small business sector faces being crippled by rising electricity costs and reduced reliability if the status quo remains.

    Ms Carnell said both sides of politics should endorse the Finkel Report and adopt its recommendations.

    “Business as usual is no longer an option. Business as usual is lack of reliable power and exponential price increases,” she said.

  • ASIC and ASBFEO hold banks to account on unfair contract terms

    Following intervention by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman (ASBFEO) and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), the big four banks are taking action to protect small businesses from unfair terms in loan contracts.

    Following a round table hosted by ASBFEO and ASIC, the big four banks have committed to a series of comprehensive changes to ensure all small business loans entered into or renewed from 12 November 2016 will be protected from unfair contract terms.

  • Melbourne University wins grant as Australia’s first Academic Centre of Cyber Security Excellence

    University of Melbourne and Edith Cowan University will share A$1.9 million in Federal Government funding as Australia's first Academic Centre of Cyber Security Excellence.

    The grant reflects the University of Melbourne's long-term teaching and research focus on cyber security and its relationship with industry and the community.

  • New buses, extra weekly services for NSW

    The NSW Government will buy more than 170 new buses, bringing thousands of additional and improved weekly services to customers across the state. 

    The $1.5 billion in funding from the upcoming NSW Budget will help replace 134 of the state’s ageing bus fleet, add 42 buses and deliver 3300 more services a week.

    To help ease increased congestion, the new bus fleet will include six double-deck buses to replace the bendy-buses.

    New and enhanced services will be added to growth centres such as Macquarie Park, Olympic Park, and Marsden Park.

  • ACCC takes action against Thermomix

    The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Thermomix In Australia Pty Ltd (Thermomix), alleging it contravened several provisions of the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) in relation to its Thermomix appliances.

    The ACCC alleges that Thermomix misled customers about their consumer guarantee rights, failed to comply with mandatory reporting requirements for injuries arising from the use of the appliances, made false representations and engaged in misleading conduct regarding the safety of the TM31 model, and made false and misleading statements about its 2014 recall.

  • Victoria’s FinTech hub in Melbourne to drive innovation

    The State Government of Victoria will establish a new FinTech hub in Melbourne's Docklands, providing a boost to local startups, attracting investment, and creating new jobs that support the state's significant professional services sector.

    The Victorian Government has released a request for proposal document which invites companies to tender to establish the FinTech hub, to be located in Dockland's Goods Shed North in the centre of Melbourne.

  • Melbourne University wins grant as Australia’s first Academic Centre of Cyber Security Excellence

    University of Melbourne and Edith Cowan University will share A$1.9 million in Federal Government funding as Australia's first Academic Centre of Cyber Security Excellence.

    The grant reflects the University of Melbourne's long-term teaching and research focus on cyber security and its relationship with industry and the community.

  • Amaroo School expansion underway

    Today I visited Amaroo School to turn the first sod of the new Amaroo School expansion. This $13.16 million project combines the construction of new learning areas for 300 extra students as well as the extension of existing infrastructure and the building of brand new hard court facilities.

    In our recent 2017/18 budget, the government recognised the need for investment in our Gungahlin public schools. Public school enrolments in the Gungahlin region have grown by about 53% over the last five years.

  • Keep Footrot Affected Sheep Out Of Our Livestock Markets

    With the advent of winter Primary Industries and Regions (SA) are urging sheep producers to be vigilant in checking for virulent footrot.

    As a result of ideal conditions over the past 12 months, PIRSA Animal Health staff have seen more cases of virulent footrot appearing in markets.

    Producers are reminded that any sheep sent to market are detected with footrot they can receive a significant fine.

    Quotes attributable to Chief Veterinary Officer, Roger Paskin

  • Melbourne, the most liveable and intelligent city in the world

    It's official. Melbourne has now been recognised as the world's most intelligent city on top of its long standing crown as the world's most liveable city.

    The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF), a global think tank based in New York, has awarded Melbourne the 2017 Intelligent Community of the Year at a ceremony in Manhattan.

    The ICF is a global network of 160 countries, cities and towns with a think tank at its heart.

  • Central West and Orana Regional Plan released

    Under the plan, the Central West and Orana region will have one of the most diverse regional economies in NSW by 2036. 

    The Central West and Orana Regional Plan is a blueprint that will guide planning and land use decisions over the next 20 years.

    It identifies five priority growth sectors, including: