Don’t cut support too quickly: Judo

Original article by Joyce Moullakis
The Weekend Australian – Page: 19 & 24 : 9-Jan-21

Judo Bank’s joint CEO Joseph Healy has warned of the potential for a surge in small business insolvencies in the June quarter. Healy notes that insolvencies are currently about 35 per cent lower than comparable periods due to factors such as COVID-19 support measures, and he has cautioned the federal government against phasing out support packages for the small business sector too quickly. Meanwhile, Healy is upbeat about the outlook for the small business-focused ‘challenger’ bank, despite the recent decision of rival Xinja to withdraw from the banking sector.

CORPORATES
JUDO BANK PTY LTD, XINJA BANK LIMITED

Refinery rescue deal to safeguard fuel stocks

Original article by Ben Packham
The Australian – Page: 5 : 14-Dec-20

The federal government is set to announce a rescue package for the Lytton, Geelong and Altona oil refineries to ensure that they remain operational until mid-2021. The refineries will receive a payment of at least $0.01 per litre for their petrol, diesel and jet fuel production over the six months from 1 January. Energy Minister Angus Taylor says the government is finalising a long-term market mechanism for the production payment, which is slated to take effect from 1 July. The future of Australia’s three remaining refineries has come under scrutiny following BP’s recent decision to close its Kwinana plant.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF INDUSTRY, SCIENCE, ENERGY AND RESOURCES, AMPOL LIMITED – ALD, EXXONMOBIL AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, VIVA ENERGY GROUP LIMITED – ASX VEA, BP AUSTRALIA LIMITED

CSL signs deal to make two Covid vaccines

Original article by Jared Lynch
The Australian – Page: 15 : 8-Sep-20

Biopharmaceutical giant CSL has secured a $1.7bn deal with the federal government to produce 80 million doses of two coronavirus vaccine candidates. This comprises 30 million doses of the vaccine that is being developed by Oxford University and AstraZeneca, and 50 million doses of the vaccine that CSL is developing with the University of Queensland. Phase three clinical trials have commenced on the Oxford vaccine, while the home-grown vaccine is in phase one trials. The government will contribute $300m to the cost of upgrading CSL’s advanced manufacturing facility in Melbourne to produce the vaccines.

CORPORATES
CSL LIMITED – ASX CSL, OXFORD UNIVERSITY, ASTRAZENECA PLC

JobKeeper could be expanded to deal with further coronavirus outbreaks

Original article by Jennifer Duke
The Sydney Morning Herald – Page: Online : 10-Aug-20

The JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme is now expected to cost $101bn in total, after the federal government agreed to extend it beyond September at a lower rate. Finance Minister Mathias Cormann has emphasised the need to gradually phase out government support, although he has not ruled out further extending the scheme beyond March if the pandemic worsens. Labor contends that the government needs a plan to boost employment rather than focusing on the JobKeeper and JobSeeker schemes.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FINANCE, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY

‘A national security scandal’: Kevin Rudd names three gaps in defence strategy

Original article by Anthony Galloway
The Sydney Morning Herald – Page: Online : 3-Jul-20

The federal government’s new defence strategy includes expenditure of $270 billion over the next 10 years on boosting the Australian Defence Force. However, former prime minister Kevin Rudd contends there are three major gaps in the strategy: failing to build up Australia’s cyber defences with sufficient speed; insufficient spending in the Pacific region, and delays in the delivery of new submarines. Rudd noted his government’s 2009 Defence White Policy had called for a doubling of Australia’s submarine fleet, and he claims the submarine project has been "comprehensively botched".

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN DEFENCE FORCE

Australia to spend $270bn building larger military to prepare for poorer, more dangerous world

Original article by Jade Macmillan, Andrew Greene
abc.net.au – Page: Online : 1-Jul-20

The federal government will shift the focus of its defence policy to the Indo-Pacific, with Prime Minister Scott Morrison warning of a heightened risk of conflict in the region in the post-coronavirus environment. The government will increase its defence budget by $270bn over the next 10 years. Amongst other things, it is expected to spent about $800m on long-range anti-ship missiles from the US which have a much larger range than Australia’s current generation of missiles. About 800 additional Australian Defence Force members are expected to be recruited over the next decade, while the defence R&D budget will include research into hypersonic weapons.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN DEFENCE FORCE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET

Regional media to get $50 million lifeline

Original article by Max Mason
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 29-Jun-20

News publishers account for 92 of the 107 regional media companies that will receive a combined $50m in emergency relief funding under the federal government’s Public Interest News Gathering program. Some $20m has been allocated to TV broadcasters, publishers will receive $18m in total and radio broadcasters have been allocated $12m. The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in a sharp fall in advertising revenue for the media sector.

CORPORATES

Qantas job shock sparks airline help

Original article by Phillip Coorey, Lucas Baird
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 8 : 26-Jun-20

The federal government is set to provide a coronavirus assistance package for the nation’s airlines in the wake of plans by Qantas to retrench 6,000 employees. Prime Minister Scott Morrison says it is clear that the sector will continue to require government assistance when the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme ends in late September. He has flagged the possibility of extending JobKeeper or providing an industry-specific support package. Morrison has previously rejected a request from Virgin Australia to extend the JobKeeper scheme.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, QANTAS AIRWAYS LIMITED – ASX QAN, VIRGIN AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX VAH

Tanking arts and entertainment sector to get $250m support package

Original article by Phillip Coorey, Tom McIlroy
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 8 : 25-Jun-20

The federal government will announce details of a $250m coronavirus rescue package for the arts and entertainment sector on 25 June. The package will provide grants and low-interest loans to businesses and cultural institutions in a sector that has been hard-hit by the coronavirus lockdown. Prime Minister Scott Morrison says the package will provide financial assistance for all people in the sector, including those who build stage sets and develop computer-generated special effects, rather than just actors and performers.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET

JobKeeper cash needed for schools and hospitals

Original article by Rosie Lewis
The Australian – Page: 2 : 16-Jun-20

Restaurant & Catering Australia CEO Wes Lambert has urged the federal government to retain the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme until at least the end of 2020. However, Prime Minister Scott Morrison has argued that retaining coronavirus stimulus measures beyond the scheduled expiration date of late September would result in less funding for essential services such as health and education. The government may introduce stimulus measures that target sectors which have been hardest hit by the economic downturn.

CORPORATES
RESTAURANT AND CATERING INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION OF AUSTRALIA INCORPORATED, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET