John McIlwraith

Taking on the giants of world business

ONE broker, attempting to sum up the challenge facing Kingstream Steel’s Oakajee project, suggested: “it’s a bit like a shipyard with the resources to build fishing boats attempting to launch the QEII”.

Heron looks to Cawse and treatment options

THE Western Australian nickel industry is waiting for a rationalisation of the besieged laterite projects, particularly the fate of the Cawse mine, owned by Joseph Gutnick’s Centaur Mining.

Benefits from cooperation

Heron also has extended its community involvement to Aboriginal education, establishing a bursary to send a school leaver to university or to allow younger students to attend school in Kalgoorlie.

Excited about China pearls

A CONNECTION with one of China’s oldest pearl farming family’s has led to a booming pearl import business for Mosman Park-based Andrea Pearson.

Talon grasps at salinity solution

ROCKS and bugs could play a major role in checking Australia’s biggest environmental problem, soil salinity, as well as clearing the State’s waterways of choking weed and other pollutants.

Regional push from Telstra

WITHIN a few years there will be more wireless systems connected to the Internet than there are PCs in the world, according to Telstra.

The cleaning machine

A RELATIONSHIP with a computer can be as intimate as that with a car – familiarity leads to a situation in which chocolate wrappers, hair pins, old credit card dockets disappear into the keyboard, as they do into the glove box.

Performance paradox - Dollar’s drop good news for the gold industry

THE Lalor brothers, Peter and Chris, abandoned the legal profession to become two of Australia’s most successful miners, surpassing even their own high expectations.

Tax rates encourage offshore exploration

AUSTRALIA compares favourably with most other oil producers in the level of taxation that applies to oil and gas production, although there are concerns about changes proposed to depreciation rates.

Gas a stony outlook for Gorgon field

THE Western Australian oil and gas industry, now in an unprecedented period of growth, faces one problem for which no solution is in sight – Greenhouse emissions.

Medicine pressures mining

Defiance Mining NL is turning its back on minerals and opting for the new, fashionable and potentially more profitable biotechnology industry.

Model for business

SHIRLEY Putnin’s enterprise is a small business – it builds and sells homes, but they will fit on a table, and their occupants will sit on your hand.

Jewellery key to gold

“Gentlemen, our fortunes depend on the greed of men and the vanity of women.”

Diesel fits into a gas idea for fuel

WA’S almost embarrassingly plentiful natural gas reserves will be put to use in producing a commonplace fuel, if a current study by two oil industry giants produces positive results.

Major zircon mine to start

PERTH-BASED Basin Minerals is expected to launch the world’s next major mineral sands project in Victoria, as sources diminish for the key mineral zircon.

Resource setbacks plug gas expansion

WHILE the talk of the increased export potential of WA’s gas has the sector preparing for another development boom, the State’s domestic natural gas market has suffered setback delays in two major resource projects.

Costs drive hire car probe

THE hire car industry has been targeted by the WA Ministry of Fair Trading, which has joined similar bodies around the country in a bid to end unfair practices.

Indonesia still promising

WESTERN Australian mining companies with projects in Indonesia are keeping their nerve, as they live on the edge of a volcano.

Nickel rides weak Aussie

WA will depend even more on a weak Australian dollar to preserve its prosperity in the next year, as commodity prices continue to come under pressure, with nickel a prime example.

Iron ore miners in for long haul

LIKE farmers watching the skies for signs of rain, companies worth billions of dollars are scanning the economic horizon, trying to determine whether it will be a good season for iron ore.

Apache signals global future for shelf gas

THE offshore oil and gas fields of Western Australia have the potential to be of global import-ance, rivalling the Gulf of Mexico, according to Jim Bass, managing director of Apache Energy.

Shallow diamond find

KIMBERLEY Diamond Co NL has discovered encouraging – and sur-prising – concentrations of gems at shallow depth in the Ellendale pipes it is acquiring from the Rio Tinto subsidiary Argyle Diamonds.

Small firms in big league

Two of the world’s leading technology companies have joined small local firms to market major products developed here, confirming the way in which the State’s resource industries generate expertise.

Turnaround on nickel laterites

A congenial evening at Kalgoorlie’s historic Hannan’s Club, venue for mining deals for a century, led to a dramatic change of direction for WMC in its attitude towards the emerg-ing lateritic nickel industry.

Woodside goes glass

SYDNEY architects Kann Finch has provided Business News with an indication of what Perth can look forward to when the new $250 million Woodside building is completed in August 2003.

Exodus to biotech

Exodus Minerals is the latest mining company to venture into the technology sector, announcing the appointment of biopharmacuetical executive Roger Aston to its board.

Argyle sells disputed site

Ellendale, a diamond field discovered a quarter of a century ago, is finally to be mined following its sale by the Rio Tinto company Argyle Diamonds to Kimberley Diamond Co.

Dealer for fluid hammer

US giant Hallibuton Energy Services has agreed to be a dealer of a new hydraulic percussion hammer manufactured by SDS Corp at its Canning Vale premises.

Air lift to precious level

GLOBAL shortages of the hi-tech metal tantalum has forced a European consumer to air freight concentrates from Perth, despite the fact that two thirds of it will be discarded in processing.

Laterite challenge

NEW sulphide nickel mines and the likely expansion of others this year will challenge the claim that lateritic deposits will dominate the market in the next few years.

News blitz reveals green Woodside

THE thrust and parry of the attempt by Shell to acquire Woodside Petroleum has prompted some analysts to believe the Australian company is seeking to produce “a press release a day”, to dissuade its shareholders from defecting.


most commented

Fuel price relief unlikely

HOUSE prices in outer Perth suburbs collapsed, it was hard to sell old gas guzzlers and there were predictions that the world would run out of oil about now.

Cashing in opportunities

THE weak Australian dollar offers an opportunity to greatly reduce Australia’s massive foreign debt and, incidentally, increase exports, particularly from WA.

Billiton’s $4b aluminium plan

AGGRESSIVE London-based mining house Billiton is carrying out preliminary studies to build a $4 billion aluminium smelter and power station in WA to harness the State’s low-cost alumina resources.

Perth play a hit in Europe

A PLAY about Paris, written in Perth, and performed in Sweden?This improbable combination was achieved by WA playwright Bill Warnock, whose play, Paris Burning, had its European premiere recently near Stockholm.