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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 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 mattmckenzie. I'd also like to declare that I'm a member of the Liberal Party.      

Reform key to competitive economy

A visiting Canadian economist has warned that Australia requires urgent reform to its labour market laws if the nation is to remain internationally competitive.

Otoc in second Nauru win

Osborne Park-based contractor Otoc has continued its move into defence-related work, winning approval for a $13 million contract on Nauru.

Austal floats naval capability

The Australian Submarine Corporation should be privatised, while Australian workers have the capability to produce defence projects locally, Austal chief executive Andrew Bellamy said today.

Trackem on track for more success

Cloud-based asset management tracker Trackem has won the overall prize at Department of Commerce’s WA Innovation of the Year awards today.

Retail record belies modest growth

Retail spending in Western Australia has hit its highest level on record, in seasonally adjusted terms, with September expenditure more than $2.8 billion; yet growth is well down from the heights of the boom.

Trade deficit improves on ore exports

Australia’s trade deficit improved to $2.3 billion for the month of September, in seasonally adjusted terms, despite Western Australia’s export performance being softer than the same time last year.

Revenue rising for ASX stars

A cluster of Western Australia-listed companies has been highlighted in BNiQ research as exhibiting strong revenue growth, appearing to have bucked the economic slowdown with strong gains in operational income.

Demand sparks WA lithium projects

SPECIAL REPORT: The potential for mass production of electric cars is among a number of high-technology trends sparking interest in Western Australia’s lithium sector, with a series of companies touting projects to meet a forecast surge in demand.

All taxi systems Ingogo as new app hits Perth

Perth's taxi dispatch market has a new player, with Sydney-based Ingogo recruiting a fleet of drivers and seeking to compete with Swan Taxis, the dominant local force for many years.

Renamed airport to reflect Busso’s tourism focus

Busselton Regional Airport will be renamed Busselton Margaret River Regional Airport in a bid to promote tourism in the South West, following the state government’s decision to expand the facility to

General Mining, Mitsubishi offtake deal

Production is a step closer to restart at the Mt Cattlin lithium mine, with General Mining Corporation signing a four-year offtake deal with Mitsubishi Corporation.

Barry House to retire in 2017

Western Australian Legislative Council president Barry House has announced he won’t contest re-election for his seat of South-West Region in 2017, after nearly three decades in parliament.

Lamb, beef growers optimistic: CBA

Western Australian farmers are the most likely in the nation to hire new employees in the year ahead, according to the annual Commonwealth Bank of Australia Agri Insights survey.

TNG, Caterpillar sign MOU

Aspiring miner TNG has moved a step closer to its Mount Peake titanium-vanadium-iron project in the Northern Territory, after inking a financing agreement with Caterpillar Financial.

Calls for cut to corporate tax

Australia needs to reduce its corporate tax burden to remain competitive, according to a series of submissions to the federal government’s tax reform white paper.

Commodities looking up: The Economist

Commodity prices are expected to rebound in the next two years, according to forecasts by the Economist Intelligence Unit, led by a sharp rise in the crude oil price and a lift in base metals.

Australian funds look carefully at governance

Australian institutional investors are among the most demanding in the world when it comes to reporting of environmental, social and governance risks, according to a global report released today by EY.

Weak domestic demand in China

Chinese consumer price inflation was a low 1.6 per cent in the 12 months to September, according to that country’s National Bureau of Statistics, highlighting that steam is coming out of the world’s s

Currency drop provides export relief

SPECIAL REPORT: Earnings for the state from the powerhouse minerals and energy industries have softened, but agriculture, among other sectors, will create opportunities. Business News also takes an in depth look at Bunbury port, where a big expansion plan needs community backing and solid regional demand growth.

CFMEU and MUA in merger talks

Two of Australia’s most powerful, and militant, trade unions have flagged a potential merger to create an industrial monolith spanning construction, mining and the wharfside.

WA exports slump in August

Slowing trade with China and Japan has contributed to a10 per cent fall in Western Australian merchandise exports for August, compared with the same period last year.

Empire targets growth through the drill bit, and by acquisition

SPECIAL REPORT: The domgas market is going through a period of structural change, but history has lessons for those businesses that know where to look.

Gas bonanza despite tough climate

SPECIAL REPORT: As the energy construction boom winds down, policy makers must get the settings right to prepare for future investment, while energy players mull the best way to allocate scarce capital.

China economy runs at two speeds

Manufacturing in China contracted in September, although the performance was better than in August and surpassed forecasts.

Startup duo target European safety market

A trauma surgeon and a former manager at Nokia are looking for funding to produce a WA-designed ‘black box’ for cars.

Teachers Mutual poised to grow

Teachers Mutual Bank had a 15.4 per cent uptick in net profit in the 12 months to June 30 after strong growth in deposits and its loan book.

Empire in maiden profit

Perth Basin energy producer Empire Oil & Gas has announced its first profit, on the back of improved operating performance and a strong cost control strategy.

Economy weighs on local moneymen

A difficult 2015 financial year for the Western Australian economy has flowed through to a soft performance for the state’s listed money managers, according to BNiQ research, with the biggest player considering a restructure to diversify its income sources.

Motivated mums reset the mould

Two Western Australian mums are among a raft of winners in the national Ausmumpreneur annual awards, which celebrates women who are successfully running their own business and juggling family life.

Accenture, Woodside data deal

Management consultant Accenture has become the latest contractor to win technology related operations work in the resources industry, this time for the provision of data analytics at Woodside's Pluto LNG facility.

Lower $A helps exporters, budget

The state government will receive a budget bonus of more than $300 million thanks to the fall of the Australian dollar, while farmers and exporters will also benefit from increased international competitiveness.

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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.

Liquidation as pressure builds at Yagan Square

Two businesses at Yagan Square have shut up shop in recent weeks, with warnings more may follow as tenants grapple with low foot traffic.

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.

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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.