Packer and the Premier

MEDIA mogul James Packer was in town last week for a chat with the Premier.

But just what did he want to have a chinwag about?

It’s been well reported that the Packer-owned Publishing and Broadcasting group has been campaigning for a lift of the 10 per cent cap restricting ownership in the Burswood Casino.

While Mr Packer did not stay at Burswood, it is highly possible the conversation with Dr Gallop could have turned to matters involving the gambling mecca in which PBL holds nearly 5 per cent.

Another point of interest in Perth for the Packer family is the Westralia Square Two site, which sits adjacent to the Perth Convention and Entertainment Centre that is due for completion in 2003.

A major shareholder in PCEC is the Wyllie Group, which has a 10 per cent stake in Burswood.

There has long been speculation that some shareholders of the casino would like to see part of the gaming floor, possibly the high-rollers’ room, move into a CBD site such as WS2.

Burswood said it knew nothing of Mr Packer’s visit, pointing out that he did not stay at the resort and had not officially represented the casino group at any meetings held with the WA Premier

A spokesperson for the Premier confirmed the meeting with Mr Packer who, as a big investor in WA, had not previously met Dr Gallop in his capacity as Premier and wanted to formally introduce himself.

The Packer family interests in WA extend to a big holding in medical technology group Q-Vis that has struggled to find form lately.


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