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.
The falling price of iron ore is putting substantial pressure on local miners, particularly small and mid-sized players, but the price of the bulk commodity is still well above levels achieved just more than a decade ago.
Consumers and businesses are submitting fraudulent invoices to avoid tax and duties on purchases from overseas, contributing to calls from local retailers for reform to the tax-free threshold for imports.
Employment growth in the construction industry will be strong in this quarter, according to a report by Hays Recruitment, as the continued influx of new people to the state drives demand for residential properties.
Perth has maintained its trend of weekly price fluctuations at the petrol bowser, according to Australian Competition & Consumer Commission data, despite most other capitals moving towards longer fuel price cycles.
The federal government’s Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption has recommended criminal charges against a number of officials from the CFMEU and Health Services Union, while the government has also released terms of reference for a review of the country’s workplace relations framework.
Western Australia led the nation in population growth in the 12 months to June 2014, but the state has experienced the slowest growth rate in eight years, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
The state government will invest an additional $591 million to deliver the Perth Freight Link, including the Roe 8 extension, by 2019, with a plan to fund the investment through the first heavy vehicle user charge in the Perth metropolitan area.
Mineral developer IMX Resources will sell part of its Ntaka Hill nickel mine to Mauritius-based private equity company Fig Tree Resources Fund II, with plans to use the cash to fund its nearby graphite project.
The state government is proceeding with plans to create a City of Perth Act as part of its reform of local governments, with cabinet approving the drafting of legislation to be released early next year.
The state’s private electricity providers have warned that an unfavourable result in the Energy Market Review could cause problems for independent operators, ultimately stifling competition and putting pressure on power prices.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.