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.

Passing Comment

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.      

Friend or threat – looking at the heart of Huawei

Debate around the selection of Huawei to roll out the communications network for Metronet is just an example close to home of how the western world is grappling with the rise of the Chinese company as a technology powerhouse.

South Korea next for trade pact

South Korea should join Australia and 10 other nations in the second generation Trans-Pacific Partnership, according to Perth USAsia Centre chief executive Gordon Flake.

Huawei still keen for Aussie 5G work

Huawei deputy chair Ken Hu has argued that moves by western countries to stop the Chinese company participating in rollout of next generation telecommunications technology will reduce competitive tension in the sector and hold back innovation.

Simulations help Calytrix win real deal

A Perth-based business that merges computer simulation with live battlefields has partnered with some big international platers in the defence space

State bid to expand IR powers

WA’s business lobby has blasted state government plans to shake up the industrial relations system, and called for residual workplace powers to instead be handed to the Commonwealth.

Fairness a key tax consideration

Inequality is rising but conventional wisdom on addressing it may need a shake-up, according to University of Western Australia economics lecturer Jakob Madsen.

$200m+ Yilgarn iron project making progress

Toronto-listed Macarthur Minerals is moving forward with a proposed magnetite project in the Yilgarn, after announcing yesterday that it had chosen Aurizon as its rail haulage operator.

Collaborating to harvest forests’ value

Local timber businesses have about $100 million of investments in planning as they hope to benefit from demand for environmentally friendly products.

Infrastructure investment, marketing to grow agribusiness

Major WA agribusinesses plan new investments to create scale and efficiency, while smaller operators are cooperating to access new markets with niche products.

Local contractors in lead work bid

A group of mid-tier contractors has banded together to lobby for the federal government to introduce tougher rules on the flow of work from infrastructure projects.

Lookout! Galway’s a go while Beach Bar’s a Peach

Publicans and restaurateurs have spent more than $5 million on a string of refurbishments and new developments in the flourishing precinct around Scarborough.

Gold Corp nation's third biggest manufacturer

State government owned Gold Corporation is Australia’s third biggest manufacturing business, according to data published by Ibisworld today, with revenue of $18.9 billion in the year to June 2018.

Synergy accused of $102m of market breaches

An investigation of Synergy’s bidding behaviour by the state’s Economic Regulation Authority found the power generator may have breached pricing rules in nearly 13,000 half-hour trading intervals between March 2016 and July 2017.

Mark my words podcast

PODCAST: Mark Beyer and Matt Mckenzie discuss Scott Morrison and roads funding, Perth's wave park, the Hopman Cup and other tourist attractions we don't have in Perth, urban sprawl, Wesfarmers' surprise takeover target, growth in WA's resources sector, and our new supplement Great for the State.

Knipe tops field as WA businesswoman of the year

An automotive dealer from the Wheatbelt has been named Telstra’s Western Australian Business Woman of the year, joining a group of 24 former winners including Gina Rinehart and Sharon Warburton.

Morrison's $1.6bn for WA roads

Albany and Bunbury Ring Roads, Fremantle Traffic Bridge, and an extension of Tonkin Highway were among the list of local road projects to receive $1.6 billion of funding from Prime Minister Scott Morrison in Perth today.

Entrepreneurs pave global pathways for tech

Free to read: As WA’s tech sector continues to develop, Business News spoke to some of the people helping Perth’s entrepreneurs score wins in global markets.

Global vision delivers local prosperity

Free to read: Easier movement of goods, capital and people driven by improved technology and economic reform have helped an isolated region become one of the wealthiest in the world. We’ve collated highlights of how WA connects into the global marketplace.

WA’s seven wonders of the resources world

Free to read: Western Australia has been home to mining for centuries, evolving from ochre pits excavated by Aboriginal peoples for rituals, art and ceremonies, to a high-tech industry that can economically supply enormous quantities of resources worldwide. Global leadership in innovation and technology adoption has supported this growth. Here are seven of the best local examples.

Science world focused on WA as telescopes scan the universe

Free to read: The Square Kilometre Array will provide a boost for science in WA, but there was a point nearly a decade ago where the project could have been lost to the state.

$2bn tax hit on WA motorists

Western Australian motorists are being overtaxed to the tune of $2 billion by governments state and federal, according to a report released today by RAC WA.

Gas tanks but longer term looks good

Asian LNG spot prices have dropped more than 50 per cent in recent months as supply growth overwhelmed strong demand, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

Leadership needed to push licence reform

Appointing a senior minister to manage reform of business licensing and sunset clauses would assist the state government control the proliferation of permits that tie-up enterprises, according to a review released today.

Perth becoming a cheaper place to live

Perth is shaking off its reputation as an expensive place to live, dropping 18 positions to be 64th of 133 cities surveyed in a new report by The Economist magazine.

Woodside, Evol aim to fuel ships boom

Tougher emissions standards for ships and a growing need for remote power options for miners could both be a boost for the domestic LNG market.

Contracts, challenges for $60bn of oil and gas projects

SPECIAL REPORT: Major new engineering contracts show momentum is building for $60 billion of oil and gas projects in WA, but the issue of carbon policy has once again created an obstacle.

Topham drills through adversity

40under40: Tim Topham had to wrestle with big challenges to create one of the Goldfields’ most prominent drilling businesses.

EPA retreats on carbon but questions remain

Emissions guidelines for a series of Western Australian energy mega projects are still unclear after the Environmental Protection Authority announced it would withdraw its net zero carbon policy, released last week, and head into months of consultation.

Equus price tag $US3.5 billion

Western Gas is continuing planning work on a project to produce gas from the Equus field at a near-shore floating LNG facility, with a probable price tag of $US3.5 billion.

Uncertainty hangs over Browse, Scarborough emissions

Woodside Petroleum has warned it would need to ramp down production at the Burrup Hub in the mid 2020s if the state government does not land on an emissions policy that would support the company’s $46 billion of backfill projects.

Chevron picks Aker for Jansz-Io design work

A second major project to backfill gas into the Gorgon LNG plant on Barrow Island is on the horizon, with Chevron appointing Norway-based Aker Solutions for front end engineering and design work on the Jansz-Io compression project.



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.