Big miners back a greener future

Original article by Geoff Chambers
The Australian – Page: 1 & 6 : 22-Jun-20

The Minerals Council of Australia will release details of a three-year climate action plan on 22 June, as well as endorsing the Paris agreement. The MCA’s climate plan includes the use of renewable energy and electric vehicles at mine sites, and it has been put together in response to a climate change backlash from fund managers and shareholders of MCA member companies. As to the issue of zero net emissions targets, MCA CEO Tania Constable says there is no set sector-wide deadline, with member companies having their own timeframes.

CORPORATES
MINERALS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO

Employers push for Fair Work review

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 9 : 3-Feb-20

The Australian Mines & Metals Association has called for a review of the Fair Work Commission, as well as the appointment of seven new commissioners over the next year. AMMA CEO Steve Knott has outlined a number of concerns about the FWC in a letter to Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter. They include the lengthy delays in approving workplace agreements and claims that the allocation of full bench cases tends to favour Labor appointees.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN MINES AND METALS ASSOCIATION (INCORPORATED), AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT

Bashing business damages economy

Original article by Glenda Korporaal
The Australian – Page: 13 : 23-Dec-19

Former Business Council of Australia president Graham Bradley says that "anti-business rhetoric" within government is having a negative impact on the economy and deterring capital investment. He has also criticised the federal government for aligning itself with small and medium business and denigrating big business. Meanwhile, Australian Investment Council CEO Yasser El-Ansary says weak consumer confidence is deterring companies from investing, adding that the BCA’s proposal to include a business investment allowance in the May 2020 Budget would only provide a short-term economic stimulus.

CORPORATES
BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN INVESTMENT COUNCIL

NAB, ANZ face new climate activist vote

Original article by Richard Gluyas
The Australian – Page: 19 : 21-Oct-19

Activist group Market Forces recently put forward shareholder resolutions calling on Westpac, the ANZ Bank and National Australia Bank to amend their constitutions in regard to reducing their exposure to fossil-fuel assets. A second activist group, the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility, will table resolutions at the upcoming AGMs of NAB and ANZ, calling on them to withdraw from industry groups whose advocacy stances are at odds with the Paris climate goals. The ACCR states that its resolutions are conditional on shareholders approving the Market Forces resolutions.

CORPORATES
WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND BANKING GROUP LIMITED – ASX ANZ, NATIONAL AUSTRALIA BANK LIMITED – ASX NAB, MARKET FORCES, AUSTRALASIAN CENTRE FOR CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP

BHP holds out against activist push

Original article by Nick Evans
The Australian – Page: 17 & 20 : 18-Oct-19

BHP CEO Andrew Mackenzie has defended its membership of mining industry groups such as the Minerals Council of Australia and associated entities like Coal 21, amid growing pressure from activist groups and shareholders. Meanwhile, BHP has advised that scheduled maintenance work at Port Hedland resulted in its Pilbara iron ore production falling three per cent to 69 million tonnes in the September quarter. BHP has also approved additional expenditure of $US344m on the Jansen potash project in Canada, ahead of a final investment decision in February 2021.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, MINERALS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, COAL 21

BHP to review membership of coal lobby

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 23 : 6-Sep-19

BHP says the latest review of its membership of industry associations will include Coal21, which has links to the Minerals Council of Australia. The resources giant is under growing pressure to sever its links with pro-coal lobbyists, but it has recommended that shareholders vote against a resolution calling for it to cancel its membership of the MCA due to the latter’s stance on climate change. Meanwhile, CFO Peter Beaven says BHP would be open to selling its coal assets at the right price; he adds that a decision on a proposed brownfield expansion of the Olympic Dam copper mine may be delayed until 2022.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, MINERALS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, COAL21 LIMITED, BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA

Revealed: Neilson’s $100 million news agenda tops the bill

Original article by Lisa Murray
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 2 : 3-May-19

The Judith Neilson Journalism Institute has provided funding for a range of initiatives since it was founded, while its longer-term goals include producing podcasts and documentaries in partnership with established media companies. The institute was founded by philanthropist Judith Neilson, who is also its patron. Neilson says she has no input into the day-to-day operations of the institute, whose board includes former ABC chairman Jim Spigelman, Free TV Australia CEO Bridget Fair and Paul Kelly, the editor-at-large of ‘The Australian’.

CORPORATES
JUDITH NEILSON JOURNALISM INSTITUTE, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, FREE TV AUSTRALIA LIMITED, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, WHITE RABBIT GALLERY LIMITED, WALKLEY FOUNDATION FOR JOURNALISM

Labor slams attack on union super

Original article by John Kehoe, Joanna Mather, David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 4 : 11-Jan-19

Shadow treasurer Chris Bowen has criticised the Productivity Commission’s proposed changes to the default superannuation fund regime. He says restricting the default fund to a list of the 10-best performing funds is problematic, as returns can vary significantly over a period of time. The PC’s key recommendation is opposed by labour unions, while the Financial Services Council and the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia have also expressed reservations. However, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg says the proposal has merit and is worth considering.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. PRODUCTIVITY COMMISSION, FINANCIAL SERVICES COUNCIL, THE ASSOCIATION OF SUPERANNUATION FUNDS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, COUNCIL OF SUPERANNUATION CUSTODIANS, SUPERANNUATION CONSUMERS’ CENTRE, BT FINANCIAL GROUP PTY LTD, WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC

Mitchell gets ready to return ASIC tennis deal serve

Original article by Ben Butler, John Stensholt
The Australian – Page: 2 : 22-Nov-18

Free TV Australia chairman Harold Mitchell has stepped down in the wake of legal action arising from his former role as a director of Tennis Australia. He has described the Australian Securities & Investments Commission’s allegations as false and has vowed to "vigorously defend" the legal action. ASIC alleges that Mitchell withheld information from TA’s board about potential bids for tennis broadcasting rights. The rights were awarded to the Seven Network, which has disputed ASIC’s claim that it had received confidential information from Mitchell about rival bids.

CORPORATES
FREE TV AUSTRALIA LIMITED, TENNIS AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, SEVEN NETWORK LIMITED, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, IMG AUSTRALIA, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Mitchell under pressure to quit Free TV after ASIC court action

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 18 : 21-Nov-18

Free TV Australia has declined to comment on the future of chairman Harold Mitchell, amid speculation that he may be forced to step down after the Australian Securities & Investments Commission launched legal action against him. ASIC’s civil action concerns Mitchell’s role as a former director of Tennis Australia, where he is alleged to have failed to advise the board that it was likely to secure more money if its TV broadcasting rights were put out to a competitive tender. Sources have suggested that Mitchell’s position at the TV industry lobby group may be untenable.

CORPORATES
FREE TV AUSTRALIA LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN SECURITIES AND INVESTMENTS COMMISSION, TENNIS AUSTRALIA, SEVEN NETWORK LIMITED, SEVEN WEST MEDIA LIMITED – ASX SWM, TEN NETWORK HOLDINGS LIMITED, NINE NETWORK AUSTRALIA LIMITED, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, FAIRFAX MEDIA LIMITED – ASX FXJ, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA