Labor to support Indonesia, Peru and Hong Kong free trade deals

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 17-Oct-19

Labor’s caucus will shortly decide whether to support the federal government’s proposed free trade agreements with Indonesia, Hong Kong and Peru. Sources have indicated that Labor is unlikely to oppose the legislation, although it may seek a number of amendments. The ACTU will lobby Labor MPs to oppose the bill, due to concerns about issues such as the trade deals’ investor-state dispute settlement clauses and labour market testing provisions.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, ACTU, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE

CEOs say big stick unlikely to be deployed

Original article by Angela Macdonald-Smith, Robert Guy
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 5 : 17-Oct-19

Alinta CEO Jeff Dimery says the federal government’s legislation to force energy companies to divest assets will probably never be triggered. Dimery argues that conditions in the energy market would have to be dire for the ‘big stick’ legislation to be used. Origin Energy CEO Frank Calabria has in turn questioned whether the legislation will increase energy affordability and reliability, while Energy Security Board chair Kerry Schott has doubts about the effectiveness of the government’s Underwriting New Generation scheme.

CORPORATES
ALINTA ENERGY (AUSTRALIA) PTY LTD, ORIGIN ENERGY LIMITED – ASX ORG, AUSTRALIA. ENERGY SECURITY BOARD

Regrets, GetUp has a few, over hard-right assault

Original article by Greg Brown
The Australian – Page: 6 : 17-Oct-19

GetUp’s national director Paul Oosting has told the National Press Club that he is proud of the activist group’s campaign during the 18 May federal election. However, he concedes that GetUp erred in targeting conservative MPs in traditionally safe seats, with five of the six seats that it focused on having been retained by the Coalition. Oosting says GetUp choose this strategy as it had expected Labor to win the election.

CORPORATES
GETUP LIMITED, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIAN ELECTORAL COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN GREENS

PM to keep his cool on economy

Original article by Rosie Lewis, Simon Benson, Richard Gluyas
The Australian – Page: 1 & 6 : 17-Oct-19

Prime Minister Scott Morrison has downplayed concerns about the outlook for the Australian economy, arguing that good economic and financial management is needed in times of uncertainty. Labor leader Anthony ­Albanese has responded to the International Monetary Fund’s latest downgrade of its economic growth forecast for Australia by calling for a stimulus package. Former federal treasurer Peter Costello has in turn urged supply-side reforms, arguing that fiscal and monetary policy have reached the limits of their effectiveness.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, INTERNATIONAL MONETARY FUND, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIA. FUTURE FUND MANAGEMENT AGENCY, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIAN RETAILERS ASSOCIATION

Young losing trust in democracy is a threat to society

Original article by Joe Kelly
The Australian – Page: 2 : 16-Oct-19

The University of Western Australia has used its submission to a Senate inquiry to highlight the declining trust in democracy, particularly among younger Australians. The UWA submission has also called for greater emphasis on civics and citizenship in the national curriculum. In addition, the UWA has advocated allowing dual citizens to be elected to parliament by repealing section 44(i) of the Constitution.

CORPORATES
UNIVERSITY OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA, MONASH UNIVERSITY

Coalition win as ALP backs big stick laws on energy

Original article by Rosie Lewis
The Australian – Page: 4 : 16-Oct-19

Labor has agreed to support the federal government’s bill to force energy companies to divest assets if they fail to reduce electricity prices. However, Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese says the policy shift is not a backdown, as the proposed legislation has been changed significantly since it was rejected by the previous parliament. The government has agreed to some concessions sought by Labor in return for supporting the bill.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Labor climate policy put fear of God in people and alienated blue-collar base

Original article by Greg Brown
The Australian – Page: 7 : 15-Oct-19

Cathy O’Toole lost the Queensland seat of Herbert at the 18 May federal election; it was the only seat in central and north Queensland that Labor lost in a dismal performance in the state. O’Toole says Labor must rethink its climate change policy in the wake of the election loss, arguing that the policy had alienated Labor’s traditional blue-collar voter base. She has ruled out contesting the seat at the next election.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, ADANI MINING PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN GREENS

Joint strategy with US on rare earths

Original article by Geoff Chambers
The Australian – Page: 7 : 11-Oct-19

Resources Minister Matt Canavan has indicated that a joint strategy with the US regarding critical minerals such as rare earths will be finalised in coming weeks. He has stressed the need for co-operation between governments to ensure that new rare earths projects go ahead. US Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, who is visiting Australia, has emphasised the importance of processing rather than merely mining rare earths. Trade Minister Simon Birmingham says the federal government wants processing of critical minerals to be undertaken in Australia.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF INDUSTRY, INNOVATION AND SCIENCE, UNITED STATES. DEPT OF COMMERCE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS AND TRADE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, LYNAS CORPORATION LIMITED – ASX LYC

Big energy: big-stick rules hamper firm investment

Original article by Angela Macdonald-Smith, Simon Evans, Mark Ludlow
The Australian Financial Review – Page: S1 & S2 : 10-Oct-19

Origin Energy CEO Frank Calabria has told an energy summit that the federal government’s proposed legislation to force energy companies to divest assets is deterring investment in the sector at a time when it is urgently needed. The issue of government intervention in the energy market attracted criticism from some of the summit’s delegates, but Energy Minister Angus Taylor says such action is justified given the rise in electricity prices in recent years as renewable energy generation has increased.

CORPORATES
ORIGIN ENERGY LIMITED – ASX ORG, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE ENVIRONMENT AND ENERGY, ENERGYAUSTRALIA PTY LTD, AGL ENERGY LIMITED – ASX AGL, AUSTRALIA. ENERGY SECURITY BOARD, AUSTRALIAN ENERGY MARKET OPERATOR LIMITED

Strict best interest duty needed: Harris

Original article by John Kehoe
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 10-Oct-19

Former Productivity Commission chairman Peter Harris has stressed the need for a strong ‘best interest duty’ that applies equally across the banking, mortgage broking, financial advice and superannuation industry. He is concerned that industry lobbying could result in a proposed best interest duty for mortgage brokers being watered down. Harris has also downplayed the need for a mortgage pricing inquiry, arguing that the federal government’s priority should be to implement the recommendations made by the commission in its 2018 report on competition in the financial services sector.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. PRODUCTIVITY COMMISSION, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION, AUSTRALIAN FINANCE GROUP LIMITED – ASX AFG