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Matt Mckenzie

Matt Mckenzie joined Business News in June 2014 and reports on projects, energy, agribusiness, small business, employment relations, manufacturing and economics. He completed bachelor of arts and bachelor of economics degrees at the University of Western Australia, majoring in political science and international relations, economics, and money and banking. He was formerly president of the UWA Student Guild, where he introduced the first private catering outlets on campus, and has worked at a leading financial services company.

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If you need to get in touch with me anonymously or through an encrypted service, you can contact me on Wickr at mattmck0. I'd also like to declare that I'm a member of the Liberal Party.      

Wyatt to tackle energy market access

Energy Minister Ben Wyatt hopes to introduce laws to ease network access rules for new electricity generators by mid 2018, while acknowledging concerns about Synergy's market power in an address today at the Energy in Western Australia Conference.

Waitsia well exceeded expectations: AWE

Sydney-based gas producer AWE plans to upgrade its resource estimate for the Waitsia gas field in the Perth Basin in coming months after a recent drilling campaign showed the field extends further eastward than initially thought.

Advanced Energy in Westpork renewables build

Applecross-based Advanced Energy Resources will soon begin work to install 1.5 megawatts of wind farm capacity across agribusiness Westpork’s biggest farms as part of a $4 million move to renewables.

Renewables await policy clarity

SPECIAL REPORT: More than $1.6 billion of renewable energy projects are proposed for the South West Interconnected System, but their success may hinge on how the government handles two regulatory issues.

Water costs need to rise, sewerage to fall: ERA

A further 4 per cent rise in metropolitan water usage charges will be needed for the 2019 financial year to ensure pricing is cost reflective, according to a draft report by the Economic Regulation Authority.

Power players keen to compete with Synergy in more open marketplace

SPECIAL REPORT: As WA households benefit from increased competition in gas retailing, the electricity sector wants to be able to compete with Synergy in providing to small customers, with some industry members calling for a reduction in the contestability threshold to 20 megawatt hours.

Wages growth at 18-year low

Western Australia recorded its lowest level of wages growth in the year to June since at least 1999, at 1.4 per cent, according to data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Perth world's 7th most liveable city

Perth is the world’s seventh most liveable city for the second year running, according to The Economist’s Intelligence Unit, while Melbourne continues a winning streak as the world's number one, a position it has held since 2011.

Acquisition could boost NWSV life extension case

Some of the North West Shelf Venture partners might either sell their stake in the operation or take an equity interest in potential projects such as Browse as one potential solution to find backfill liquids for Karratha gas plant in the next decade, according to a report by Wood Mackenzie.

Managers, investors evolve in west

The state’s first early stage venture capital limited partnership is one of three funds announced by Western Australian money managers this year, and one of two in a joint project by Cottesloe-based View Street Partners and Nedlands-based Mac Equity.

Gorgon LNG production ahead of the curve

Chevron’s Gorgon project has shaken off last year’s teething issues to ship at an above-capacity run rate in July, exporting 1.4 million tonnes of LNG in the month, according to the latest data from consultancy Energy Quest.

Domestic economy lags export growth

THE 2016-17 financial year marked the start of a recovery for Western Australian merchandise exports, which were up 20 per cent to be worth nearly $121 billion in the year to June.

Small business growth on tap at Curtin

SPECIAL REPORT: The Monk Craft Brewery & Kitchen was among many businesses boosted by a local program to support entrepreneurs.

Shared spaces connect businesses, foster collaborative opportunities

SPECIAL REPORT: There is a range of places for small businesses and startups to access support, but technological change means some are rethinking their approach. Click through for the updated BNIQ list of SME and startup business centres.

Record administrations in June

Corporate administrations in Western Australia fell for the 2016-17 financial year, down by 5.2 per cent on the previous period, although a poor result for the three months to June suggests it is too early to call a recovery.

Wyatt moves to enable Alinta access to NWIS

The state government plans to prepare reforms to allow third-party access in the North West Interconnected System, the Pilbara’s electricity network, ready for a cabinet decision in March 2018, in a move that would end years of impasse.

Mareterram targets growth through acquisition

Fremantle-based seafood producer Mareterram has examined more than 30 potential acquisition opportunities in the past couple of years as it seeks to grow into a larger diversified business focused on protein.

Flux to double capacity in Hawaiian deal

About 1,400 square metres of capacity will be added at the Flux co-working hub run by Spacecubed, with the organisation planning to broaden its offerings in agtech innovation and virtual reality, while taking on an investment from property developer Hawaiian.

Summit generates $37m despite plant trip

Two of Western Australia’s biggest power stations have earned after-tax profits of around $37 million in the 12 months to March, despite one of the generators being out of action, according to the annual report of their part owner.

Papalia fires on federal navy program

The state government will be seeking to pile pressure on the Commonwealth to secure more defence industry spending in the west, according to Minister for Defence Issues Paul Papalia, as he hit out at his federal counterpart over a perceived lack of naval shipbuilding cash flowing to local players.

South Hedland power plant not ready: Fortescue

Fortescue Metals Group claimed today that a new power station built by Canadian company TransAlta Corporation at South Hedland had failed to achieve commercial production, while the miner also announced it would buy back a second power station it sold to TransAlta in 2012.

Miners in $12m of raisings

Three local resources companies have announced successful raisings worth a total of $12 million today, with uranium hopeful Vimy Resources, gold focused Explaurum and gold explorer Catalyst Metals all raising capital.

Sandfire increases stake in US copper project for $7.1m

West Perth-based miner Sandfire Resources has further lifted its interest in the Black Butte copper project in the US, taking its total share of project vehicle Tintina Resources to 78.1 per cent.

WA wins for subsea work

Two Western Australian businesses have been recognised for their achievements in the subsea engineering sector at the 2017 Subsea Energy Australia awards.

Commissioning complete at Sth Hedland power station

Commissioning has been completed today at a 150-megawatt gas power station in South Hedland built by Canadian energy company TransAlta, to power Horizon Power customers and Fortescue Metals Group’s operations.

Goyder calls for tax, red tape cuts to generate growth

Business needs to be unshackled from red tape to compete with technology, while lower tax would boost wages growth, Richard Goyder told today’s Success & Leadership breakfast.

Seamless transition the goal

A lengthy leadership transition provided Richard Goyder with the ideal preparation for his role as Wesfarmers’ boss in 2005, the outgoing managing director told today’s Business News Success & Leadership breakfast.

Mixed outlook for China

Chinese demand for Australian natural resources could be on a longer-term path of slow growth, although a major international development project could bring some benefits.

Jockeying for position in Perth Basin

SPECIAL REPORT: Only a small number of oil and gas players in the Perth Basin are moving forward on projects.

Fracking moratorium hit to under-pressure gas plays

SPECIAL REPORT: Ongoing uncertainty over state government policy and a lengthy approvals process are muddying the waters for local energy hopefuls.

Walker replaces Aitken at Empire

Former Canaccord Genuity head of energy Asia Pacific, Angus Walker, has taken over the helm of Perth Basin energy producer Empire Oil & Gas today after the resignation of managing director Ken Aitken.

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WA returns to growth as Australia avoids recession

GDP has bounced back from a poor showing in the September quarter with December quarter seasonally adjusted growth of 1.1 per cent, while Western Australia snapped a five quarter streak of shrinking state demand to grow 0.4 per cent.

Financial probe for student union

The University of Western Australia Student Guild has dismissed a staff member over financial irregularities after bringing in forensic accountants from BDO to undertake a special analysis of its 2013 accounts.

Warning to Uber moonlighters

Uber drivers using the service as a supplementary income should declare it to their primary employer, according to Minter Ellison partner Kathy Reid, after a driver who had worked during sick leave lost an unfair dismissal claim.

Property player tops 40u40

Blackburne managing director Paul Blackburne was last night named the 2016 Business News 40under40 First Amongst Equals, ahead of a talented and diverse field of candidates.

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McGowan to cancel Roe 8

The Roe 8 road project will be cancelled if the Labor Party wins the upcoming state election, opposition leader Mark McGowan said today, even though the government has already signed a contract for construction, with $236 million of funding to be re-allocated to three alternative roads.

Nalder makes fresh freight link pitch

Transport Minister Dean Nalder has highlighted the social benefits of Roe 8 and touted the minimal environmental impact of the project at a lunch today, adding that the link would need to be built regardless of any move to an outer harbour.

Green light for Kwinana lithium plant

A $400 million lithium processing plant to be built in Kwinana has got the green light, with West Perth company MSP Engineering to act as head contractor.

Feds back unconventional drilling

Resources Minister Josh Frydenberg said the federal government would be pushing states to remove moratoriums on unconventional gas extraction, including fracking, he told the LNG 18 conference today.