Monday, 19 August 2019 Sydney

Invest In Australia News::

  • Proposal for more transparency on music performing rights licensing


    The ACCC is calling for feedback on a proposal to reauthorise the Australasian Performing Right Association’s (APRA) musical works licensing arrangements for a further five years with additional conditions.

    APRA and its members, including composers, songwriters and publishers, hold performing rights for virtually all music played or performed in Australia, and earn royalties from those rights. In most cases, members assign these rights on an exclusive basis to APRA, which collects royalties by imposing licence fees on users of that music.

  • The Team to take Tasmania’s case to the AFL

    A high-powered team of business and football leaders has been appointed to build the case for Tasmanian AFL and AFLW sides.

    The Project Team will be Chaired by founding Virgin Australia CEO and tourism industry entrepreneur Brett Godfrey.

  • Bacon fries Budget

    Scott Bacon knows Labor’s reckless spending would immediately drive Tasmania into deficit and almost double net debt across the forward estimates – that’s why he has refused to deliver an alternative Budget.

    When costed, Labor’s State Budget thought bubbles, including a blanket 3 per cent per annum public sector wage rise and opposition to the government efficiency dividend, would blow a $790.5 million hole in the Budget bottom line, driving State net debt to more than $1.9 billion by 2022-23.

  • Ombudsman looks forward to working with new shadow ministry


    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell has welcomed the new federal shadow ministry, and looks forward to working closely with Shadow Minister for Small and Family Business, Brendan O’Connor and Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations, Tony Burke.

    “Brendan O’Connor has a long political history and has previously served as the Minister for Small Business,” Ms Carnell said.

  • Two Draft Water Allocation Plans Released for Public Comment

    The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has released two water allocation plans for public comment ‑ the draft Oolloo Dolostone Aquifer Water Allocation Plan 2019-2029 and draft Katherine Tindall Limestone Aquifer Water Allocation Plan 2019-2029.

    DENR Water Planning and Engagement Director, Tim Bond, said both draft Plan areas are within the Daly Roper Beetaloo Water Control District and, while the Plans relate to different groundwater resources, the aquifer boundaries and management of surface water overlap.

  • Households could save hundreds of dollars on their gas bill each year through the Energy Switch service.

    Energy Switch is a free online service, helping households find the best gas and electricity deals in NSW.

    To use the service, customers need to upload their latest e-bill to the Energy Switch website. The bill is compared to every NSW retailer to see what they could be saving and the cheapest plans available.

    Customers will also be provided with all of the information needed to switch plans and be reminded when it’s time to review their plan again.

  • More transparency needed in wine grape sector

    Harmful market practices are restricting competition in some Australian wine grape growing regions and limiting the potential for growth of Australia’s wine industry, according to an interim report released today by the ACCC.

    Through its detailed market study into the wine grape sector, the ACCC has proposed measures to address concerning practices it believes are common across high-production, warm climate wine grape-growing regions. 

  • Celebrating Tasmanian women in the resources industry

    Congratulations to the exceptional Tasmanian women who were the recipients of the Women in Resources Tasmania Awards 2019.

    Playing leading roles in the fields of mining, mineral processing, civil contracting and heavy industry manufacturing, these women are breaking stereotypes with their achievements in traditionally male-dominated industries.

    I was proud to meet these women last night in Parliament House and hear the commendations they have received from their employers.

  • Delivering upgrades for the Great Eastern Drive

    The Hodgman Liberal Government’s 2019-20 State Budget delivers a record $1.6 billion in partnership with the Morrison Federal Liberal Government, to build the job-creating transport infrastructure our growing state needs.

    It provides $58 million dollars to continue delivering our election policy commitments under our Roads to Support Tasmania’s Visitor Economy program.

    The Great Eastern Drive is a 176 kilometre long section of the Tasman Highway that extends from Orford to St Helens on Tasmania’s East Coast.

  • Lower petrol prices in March quarter but trending upwards

    Average petrol prices in the five largest cities, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth, were at their lowest levels in more than two years during the March quarter but prices are trending upwards.

  • Jetstar to pay $1.95 million for false or misleading claims on refunds

    The Federal Court has ordered Jetstar Airways Pty Ltd to pay $1.95 million in penalties for making false or misleading representations about consumer guarantee rights under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL).

    The Court found that between April 2017 and March 2018, Jetstar made false or misleading representations on its website about the rights and remedies available to consumers under the ACL.

    Jetstar made false or misleading statements on its website that some fares were not refundable, and that consumers could only get a refund if they purchased a more expensive fare.

  • Garuda ordered to pay $19 million for price fixing

    The Federal Court has ordered PT Garuda Indonesia Ltd (Garuda) to pay penalties of $19 million for colluding on fees and surcharges for air freight services.

    The penalties follow the ACCC’s court action against a global air cargo cartel, which has so far resulted in penalties of $132.5 million against 14 airlines, including Air New Zealand, Qantas, Singapore Airlines and Cathay Pacific.

  • East coast gas prices need to follow export prices down

    High gas prices remain a critical issue for domestic gas users and could see more businesses move or close in the east coast, according to the Gas Inquiry 2017‑20 Interim Report released by the ACCC today.

    The report shows that most commercial and industrial Australian gas users will pay more than $9/GJ for gas this year, and some more than $11/GJ.

  • Recognising Tasmania’s top exporters

    Nominations for the 2019 Tasmanian Export Awards are now open to recognise the contribution our leading exporters make to our State.

    Tasmania has what the rest of the world wants and now is the time to maintain the momentum and invest for growth in our trade sector to support local businesses and create more jobs.

    The 2019-20 State Budget invests an additional $4.4 million to support Tasmania’s first Trade Strategy, which will increase market opportunities and support Tasmanian businesses to get their products to the world.

    Tasmania’s trade continues to grow strongly, with exports growing 6.6 per cent compared to the last year.

  • Greens honest about their slash and burn budget alternative, unlike Labor

    It says a lot that two Green members can put together an alternative budget while 14 Labor members can’t.

    First and foremost, it says that everyone apart from Rebecca White and Labor realises that you can’t be an alternative government if you don’t have an alternative plan.

    While the Greens deserve credit for at least backing up their constant negativity with an alternative budget, it is very clear that a future Labor-Green Government would once again decimate jobs, businesses and our economy.

    Slashing infrastructure projects, de-funding important tourism initiatives and infrastructure, and gutting major industries like racing is the last thing Tasmania needs.

  • Allegations Sony breached consumer law for PlayStation games

    The ACCC has instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Sony Interactive Entertainment Network Europe Limited (Sony Europe) for making false or misleading representations to Australian consumers on its website and in dealings with Australian customers of its PlayStation online store.

    The ACCC alleges that from around September 2017, Sony Europe told consumers seeking a refund for faulty games that it did not have to provide refunds for games that had been downloaded, or if 14 days had passed since purchase.

  • Auditor-General report on Emergency Department services

    The Tasmanian Government notes the Auditor-General’s report into Tasmania’s Emergency Departments.

    The recommendations and findings contained within the report outline several opportunities to provide better care for more Tasmanians.

    We look forward to examining these closely as part of the upcoming Access Solutions Meeting and will be providing a copy of the report to the attendees to help inform discussions.

  • Return of Michaelia Cash provides much-needed continuity for small businesses

    The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman, Kate Carnell welcomes the return of Senator Michaelia Cash to Cabinet as Minister for Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business.

    “Senator Cash’s return as small and family business minister demonstrates the importance of this sector in Australia, getting on with the important work that’s already begun since the Minister’s initial appointment,” Ms Carnell said.

  • Amended OxoPak certification trademark approved


    The ACCC has approved OxoPak Pty Ltd’s application for a certification trademark for certain biodegradable plastics after substantial changes were made to it to address concerns raised by the ACCC.

    The approved OxoPak mark certifies that plastic bags and other packaging materials meet specified standards of oxo-biodegradability. The mark is intended to be used on plastic products that are recyclable or, if they do end up in the environment as litter, are oxo-biodegradable.

  • Bellinger River snapping turtles saved from extinction

    A captive breeding program at Taronga Zoo has successfully returned 10 critically endangered Bellinger River snapping turtles to their natural habitat on the Mid North Coast.

    The $100 million Saving our Species captive breeding program rescued 20 virus-free turtles from the Bellinger River. In 2015, 90 per cent of the estimated 4500 turtles living in the river were wiped out by a virus within three months.

    In the first year of the program, 22 healthy turtles hatched, with another 31 healthy turtles hatching in 2018.

  • Regional Pitchfest to unearth startup talent

    Minister for Jobs Stuart Ayres is calling on NSW’s brightest startups to share their innovative ideas at Australia’s largest pitch competition for regional startups – the 2019 Jobs for NSW Regional Pitchfest.

    Minister for Jobs Stuart Ayres said the statewide event, supported by the NSW Government-backed Jobs for NSW, will see applicants participate in one of nine local pitching events across regional and rural areas from Broken Hill to Byron Bay.

  • Digital giants’ buy-up of start-ups poses challenges for merger laws

    Competition regulators world-wide are grappling with the rise of dominant digital platforms like Facebook and Google, and are debating whether current competition laws need to be reframed in response, ACCC Chair Rod Sims said in a speech today.

    Speaking at the 2019 Competition Law Conference in Sydney, Mr Sims noted a global discussion among anti-trust authorities on how should they respond to acquisitions by big digital platforms of start-ups that, while small, may evolve into significant competitors.

  • Labor’s Alternative Budget challenge

    When Rebecca White makes her budget reply in Parliament next week there will be nowhere to hide for a fence-sitting, policy-free Labor Party.

    After another year of being all complaints and no solutions, Labor must finally be honest with Tasmanians on what their policies are, what those policies would cost, and which projects and services that the Hodgman Liberal Government is delivering would they cut to pay for them.

  • Appeal in laundry detergent cartel case unsuccessful

    The Full Court of the Federal Court has dismissed the ACCC’s appeal against a ruling that there was insufficient evidence to find that PZ Cussons Australia (Cussons) engaged in cartel behaviour in the laundry detergent market.

    “We took this action because the alleged conduct related to an essential household product that is frequently purchased and used by Australian consumers,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims said.

    “The ACCC takes cartel conduct extremely seriously, due to its impact on consumers and the wider economy.”