States urged to sell $220b in public assets rather than increase debt

Original article by Mark Ludlow
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 20-Jun-19

The net debt of Australia’s state governments is set to rise sharply in coming years to finance infrastructure projects, but analysis shows that they have almost $220bn worth of assets that could be privatised. This includes $67.4bn worth of public assets in Queensland and $59.bn in New South Wales. IFM Investors CEO Brett Himbury says the nation’s superannuation funds would be keen to invest in state government assets. The NSW government may be open to further asset sales, but Queensland and Western Australia have ruled out this option.

CORPORATES
IFM INVESTORS PTY LTD, INFRASTRUCTURE PARTNERSHIPS AUSTRALIA, S&P GLOBAL RATINGS, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE TREASURY, AUSGRID PTY LTD, ENDEAVOUR ENERGY LIMITED

Why Commonwealth is still the investors’ favourite, 25 years on

Original article by James Frost
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 18 : 13-Sep-16

The first tranche of Commonwealth Bank shares were issued at $A5.40 apiece in September 1991. Investors who took up the minimum of 400 shares in the float and reinvested their dividends over the following 25 years would now hold $A131,371 worth of shares in Australia’s largest bank. Financial market observers note that the first stage of the Commonwealth Bank privatisation was popular with investors, despite the challenging economic conditions at the time.

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COMMONWEALTH BANK OF AUSTRALIA – ASX CBA, AUSTRALIAN FOUNDATION INVESTMENT COMPANY LIMITED – ASX AFI, MORGANS FINANCIAL LIMITED, MONTGOMERY INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT PTY LTD, EVANS AND PARTNERS PTY LTD, LINCOLN INDICATORS PTY LTD, PYRAMID BUILDING SOCIETY

The boats v Medicare fear election

Original article by Phillip Coorey
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 1 & 6 : 23-Jun-16

The future of Medicare was again under scrutiny on 22 June 2016, with Opposition Leader Bill Shorten describing the universal healthcare system as a "birthright" of Australians. Meanwhile, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has reiterated that his government will seek to overhaul the Medicare payments system rather than outsourcing it. Turnbull has also attempted to divert attention from claims about the privatisation of Medicare by warning that the Australian Labor Party’s border protection policies would result in an influx of asylum seekers.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF THE PRIME MINISTER AND CABINET, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF HUMAN SERVICES. MEDICARE AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF IMMIGRATION AND BORDER PROTECTION, LIBERAL PARTY OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN MEDICAL ASSOCIATION LIMITED

$1b call to land air traffic under private control

Original article by Jamie Freed
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 26 : 29-Apr-16

The Australian Aviation Associations’ Forum (TAAAF) believes air traffic control provider Airservices Australia would operate more efficiently as a private company. According to TAAAF chairman Greg Russell, the most appropriate would be the not-for-profit business model. The Airline Owners & Pilots Association also called for the privatisation of Airservices. The sale could raise $A1 billion for the Federal Government.

CORPORATES
AIRSERVICES AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN AVIATION ASSOCIATIONS’ FORUM, AIRLINE OWNERS AND PILOTS ASSOCIATION, NAV CANADA, QANTAS AIRWAYS LIMITED – ASX QAN, VIRGIN AUSTRALIA HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX VAH, AUSTRALIA. PRODUCTIVITY COMMISSION

Water assets next targets to be privatised

Original article by Jenny Wiggins
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 15 : 27-Jul-15

Graeme Samuel will use an Infrastructure Partnerships Australia symposium to argue the case for selling government-owned assets such as water utilities. He strongly supports the privatisation of assets such as dams, water pipes and desalination plants, but concedes that it is a politically sensitive issue. Infrastructure Partnerships Australia CEO Brendan Lyon also believes that privatization of water assets is necessary, and suggests that they are an ideal investment for superannuation funds.

CORPORATES
INFRASTRUCTURE PARTNERSHIPS AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN COMPETITION AND CONSUMER COMMISSION