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.      

China shifts investment focus

New South Wales has overtaken Western Australia as the favoured destination for Chinese direct investment in Australia, as the near decade-long resources and energy sector boom tails away.

Glacial change brings 24-hour retail

Some smaller retail operators in and around Perth are taking advantage of the ad hoc nature of regulation in Western Australia to open 24 hours a day.

Bradford talks up merger

An expanded Independence Group would hope to eventually enter the ASX100, chief executive Peter Bradford told a Western Australian Mining Club lunch yesterday.

Pipeline to FMG's Solomon hub opened

A 270 kilometre-long gas pipeline connecting Fortescue Metals Group’s Solomon hub operations to the Dampier natural gas pipeline was officially opened today.

Remember human side of business

LEADING human resources experts hosted a forum in Perth last week on the issue of redundancies and downsizing, a timely dialogue considering the state’s economic malaise.

WA commercial lending jumps

CONFIDENCE in the commercial construction and home building sectors is driving borrowings growth in Western Australia, despite the gloomy economic outlook contained in the state budget.

Frontier buys former St Barbara mine

Shares in gold and copper explorer Frontier Resources doubled on news it will acquire an 80 per cent stake in the Gold Ridge mine in Guadalcanal, previously operated by St Barbara.

Brumby, Marindi in zinc merger

Two well-known mining industry executives will assume control of ASX-listed Brumby Resources in a merger they hope will establish the new company as a producer in the medium term.

Iron ore project in $US1.5bn refinancing

Mid West iron ore miner Karara Mining has completed a $US1.48 billion refinancing of its bank debts, providing a share price boost for its part owner Gindalbie Metals.

GCS in Citic contract

Global Construction Services has won a scaffolding contract for the Sino Iron project by Citic Pacific Mining.

Energy partnership proving its value

Western Australia has developed a strong edge in resources technology but must continue to invest in innovation as it faces competition from other regional players and beyond, according to the Western Australian Energy Research Alliance.

$15m for WA research centres

Western Australian universities have featured prominently in an expanded research funding program announced by federal Education Minister Christopher Pyne, with three resources-related centres scoring nearly $15 million between them.

Uber unveils next target

Having taken Perth by storm in the past year, Uber is planning a new car pooling product that could cut traffic congestion and transportation costs if the experience in other cities is repeated, general manager (Australia) Simon Rossi told a Business News Success & Leadership breakfast this morning.

Processed beef exports trend up

THE state’s live cattle exporters are preparing for an improved season ahead, while farmers in the processed meat market have already enjoyed a dramatic improvement in fortunes so far this year.

LNG delays possible: Wood Mackenzie

A report from consultants Wood Mackenzie to be released at today’s Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association conference predicts further delays to the start of production for the state’s new LNG projects, including Gorgon trains 2 and 3.

Business feels slowdown effect

Almost 60 Western Australian businesses were declared insolvent in February 2015, an increase in the state’s share of national insolvencies compared with recent years.

Tough year ahead for government, business

A recovery in economic growth, a raft of asset sales, and improved GST distribution will help lift the state’s finances out of their current parlous position; or at least that’s the hope outlined in y

WA deficit to be $2.7bn

Western Australian government net debt is forecast to peak at $35 billion in 2017-18, but Treasurer Mike Nahan is confident that asset sales and a lagged rebound in GST revenue will help pay it back.

Budget hits commodities, GST iceberg

Revenue write downs of more than $10 billion across the forward estimates have taken a sledgehammer to the state's budget position.

Stanfield to return to bourse

A recapitalised Stanfield Funds Management is set to resume trading on the ASX today, with a new focus on Asian technology companies and a strong Western Australian connection.

Cash flow king in small business package

The federal government has adopted a Keynesian-style stimulus policy with its new temporary instant asset write-off, moving cash flows for small businesses forward and recouping the revenue in later budgets.

Hockey turns to small business for economic revival

Accelerated depreciation for small businesses, a tough new multinational tax avoidance law and a $5 billion concessional loan scheme for northern Australian infrastructure development were among the new policies announced in last night’s federal budget.

Soft budget contrasts to past attempt

Treasurer Joe Hockey has delayed the federal government's return to surplus by another year, forecasting that the country will be not be in the black until 2019-20 and meaning the Commonwealth will extend its run of seven deficits to 11.

Fatality at Nifty

Copper miner Aditya Birla Minerals has suffered a contractor fatality at its Nifty copper mine in the Great Sandy Desert.

Marmion bullish on growth prospects

Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Marmion is confident the state is set for further long-term growth as an energy exporter and a hub for industry knowledge.

DownUnder to exploit its analytical edge, courtesy of ‘Bruce’ almighty

The Roebuck Basin has become a new area of interest for the state’s petroleum explorers, creating some positive stories amid falling oil prices.

Shell’s deep water plans a Prelude of WA’s gas future - SPECIAL REPORT

WA is poised to double its LNG production, but softer oil prices and global competition for capital mean there is much conjecture about the sector’s future. Click through to see more on our major oil and gas projects feature.

Farmers hit back at anti-wool rock star

Australian rock star and face of a controversial Peta campaign against the wool industry, Jona Weinhofen, could be getting shearing lessons thanks to a successful crowdfunding project by WAFarmers.

Price falls hit exports

Merchandise exports from Western Australia in the 12 months to March were down almost 10 per cent on the previous corresponding period, according to data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Price relief for iron ore miners

AN iron ore price bounce of almost 30 per cent from 10-year lows earlier this month will no doubt bring some relief to many in the industry and in the Department of Treasury.

MMA hit by weak energy market

Marine services provider MMA Offshore said it was progressing towards its previously announced $15 million cost savings target, while the company suffers reduced demand and lower fleet utilisation.



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.

EC&M into administration

Henderson-based electrical contractor EC&M has entered administration this morning, with about 400 staff to be temporarily stood down.

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.

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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.