Builders slam BCA’s union deal

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 2 : 18-Sep-20

Master Builders Australia CEO Denita Wawn has confirmed reports that she left a meeting of the federal government’s industrial relations working group "in disgust" over revelations that the Business Council of Australia had struck a deal with the ACTU. The proposed deal would allow union enterprise agreements to be approved within 14 days; employers had pushed for all agreements to be approved within this time-frame. Wawn has expressed concern that amongst other things, the fast-tracked process for union agreements will favour large companies over small businesses.

CORPORATES
MASTER BUILDERS AUSTRALIA INCORPORATED, BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, ACTU

Migration, tax reform key to revival

Original article by Geoff Chambers
The Australian – Page: 4 : 24-Aug-20

The Australian Industry Group has urged the federal government to pursue major changes to the nation’s tax system. The employers’ group says long-term tax reform measures should include an overhaul of the goods and services tax, the abolition of mining royalties and replacing fuel excise with road-user charges. It has also called for scheduled personal income tax cuts to be brought forward and business income tax relief to be extended. The AiGroup also wants the migrant cap to be increased, with priority given to skilled migrants.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP

Reform to offset slump in mine jobs

Original article by Joe Kelly
The Australian – Page: 6 : 29-Jun-20

The Australian Mines & Metals Association has warned that the coronavirus pandemic could result in the loss of between 24,000 and 48,000 jobs in the resources and energy sector in the absence of any new projects. AMMA CEO Steve Knott argues that this would be offset by $250bn worth of proposed projects in the sector that would create 100,000 jobs by 2026. However, he says the federal government’s industrial relations working group on greenfields agreements must secure backing for a proposal to allow new workplace deals to cover the entire construction phase of new projects. Members of the working group met for the first time on 26 June.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN MINES AND METALS ASSOCIATION (INCORPORATED)

Wage rise an assault on small business

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Weekend Australian – Page: 3 : 20-Jun-20

Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO James Pearson has criticised the decision to increase the minimum wage at a time when the economy and the labour market have been hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox warns that the minimum wage rise of 1.75 per cent will affect hiring intentions at a time when unemployment and underemployment have increased sharply. Professor Mark Wooden is the only member of the Fair Work Commission’s wage panel to have pushed for the minimum wage to be frozen for 12 months.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION

Bearish start to IR reform talks

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 4-Jun-20

Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter held the first meeting with representatives of the union movement and employers’ groups on 3 June, as part of a collaborative approach to workplace reforms. He said that both groups appreciate the need for change. Business Council of Australia CEO Jennifer Westacott said employers and unions must be prepared to make compromises, while ACTU secretary Sally McManus said unions are open to changing the ‘better off overall test’. Meanwhile, the Treasury warned that it could take 5-7 years for the economy to recover from the pandemic, and that the unemployment rate could be 8-9 per cent by 2021.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS,BUSINESS COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA,ACTU

Unions reject calls to halt wage increase

Original article by Greg Brown
The Australian – Page: 6 : 1-Jun-20

The Australian Industry Group is against any increase in the minimum wage in 2020, with CEO Innes Willox noting it is the first time in 30 years that it has completely opposed a rise. Willox says increasing the minimum wage is not in anyone’s interest, and if the Fair Work Commission does decide to do so it should be delayed until January 2021. Unions are seeking a $30-per-week increase in the minimum wage, while the Shop, Distributive & ­Allied Employees’ Association states that there should be a freeze on planned cuts to penalty rates if the FWC does not award an increase in the minimum wage.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, SHOP, DISTRIBUTIVE AND ALLIED EMPLOYEES’ ASSOCIATION

Time ripe for urgent IR repairs: employers

Original article by Ewin Hannan, Joe Kelly
The Australian – Page: 2 : 19-May-20

The Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry has proposed five changes to the industrial relations system to create jobs and boost productivity in the post-coronavirus work environment. Amongst other things, ACCI CEO James Pearson has called for employee stand-down provisions to be extended until March 2021, while companies should be permitted to stagger the times at which employees start and finish work without incurring overtime payments. Pearson has outlined his suggestions in a letter to Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS, ACTU

Don’t take away job payments: employers

Original article by Rosie Lewis
The Australian – Page: 4 : 14-May-20

Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox says the $130bn JobKeeper scheme must run its full course, and it should be extended beyond the current end date of 27 September if necessary. He has also cautioned against any move to reduce the amount of the wage subsidy, which is currently $1,500 per fortnight. Some Coalition MPs argue that businesses which have resumed normal operations should no longer receive the subsidy, but Council of Small Business Organisations CEO Peter Strong suggests that such businesses should instead be allowed to opt out of the scheme.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, COUNCIL OF SMALL BUSINESS ORGANISATIONS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED

Porter seeks Hawke-style accord with unions to spark a recovery

Original article by Rosie Lewis, Greg Brown, Olivia Caisley
The Australian – Page: 4 : 23-Apr-20

Council of Small Business Organisations CEO Peter Strong has called for the industrial awards system to be abolished, while Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox says awards should be retained but simplified. Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter has signalled that workplace reform will be on the federal government’s agenda. He hopes to build on recent good relations with ACTU secretary Sally McManus to have constructive discussions with union leaders regarding workplace reforms aimed at creating jobs and boosting wages when the coronavirus abates.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS, COUNCIL OF SMALL BUSINESS ORGANISATIONS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP, ACTU

Call to delay minimum wage rise

Original article by Ewin Hannan
The Australian – Page: 5 : 17-Mar-20

The Australian Industry Group has not made a recommendation on an increase in the minimum wage in its submission to the Fair Work Commission. It has cited the uncertain outlook for the economy by 1 July, when any rise in the minimum wage is slated to take effect. Ai Group has also urged a delay in any such increase until 15 July; it argues that the FWC should hold off on finalising its wage review until after the release of national accounts data on 3 July. Ai Group CEO Innes Willox has warned that every segment of the economy will be affected by the coronavirus.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. FAIR WORK COMMISSION, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP