Today's Business Headlines

13/01/2009 - 06:35

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Extension of gas pipeline to preserve Kimberley; Chinese mills seek long-term offtake agreements in WA; Rudd IR changes 'a threat to WA'; Demand dive savages iron exports; PM told to hasten tax cuts

Today's Business Headlines

Extension of gas pipeline to preserve Kimberley
The influential owners of the Dampier-to-Bunbury gas pipeline want to extend key infrastructure to Derby as part of an alternative $1.5 billion to $2.5 billion proposal to the state government's Kimberley LNG hub proposal. The West

Chinese mills seek long-term offtake agreements in WA
Emerging West Australian iron ore producers are facing renewed Chinese interest in long-term offtake agreements before an expected drop in contract prices. The Australian

Rudd IR changes 'a threat to WA'
The Barnett government has attacked key aspects of the federal government's sweeping industrial relations changes, warning they will damage WA industry as it tries to deal with the impact of the global economic crisis. The West

Demand dive savages iron exports
Australia's iron ore export revenue fell nearly $1 billion in November as slumping global steel demand led to a 24 per cent drop in monthly shipments. The Australian

PM told to hasten tax cuts
Promised tax cuts could be brought forward a year as the Rudd government considers options for a second emergency package to counter the worsening global economy. The Australian

 

THE WEST AUSTRALIAN:

Page 1: The Barnett government has attacked key aspects of the federal government's sweeping industrial relations changes, warning they will damage WA industry as it tries to deal with the impact of the global economic crisis.

Page 3: The wool industry has been dealt a new blow after the state's last wool scouring plant was forced to shut down because of decreased demand on the back of the world financial crisis.

Page 4: Hopes that Australia would escape the worth of global economic crisis has been dealt a blow by unexpectedly bad employment advertisement figures releases yesterday.

The mining union has warned of angry picket lines and a return to the law of the jungle if the federal government heeds calls from a peak employer group to ensure the use of strike-breakers.

Page 6: An urgent plan was needed to reduce Port Hedland residents' exposure to increasing levels of iron ore dust, the Environmental Protection Authority said yesterday.

Page 13: Former WA premier Brian Burke has asked for a "fair go" after telling a Perth court yesterday he would be pleading not guilty to giving false evidence at Corruption and Crime Commission hearings in 2006.

Business: Senior broker with Hartleys, David Michael, yesterday faced court on insider trading offences dating back six years.

The influential owners of the Dampier-to-Bunbury gas pipeline want to extend key infrastructure to Derby as part of an alternative $1.5 billion to $2.5 billion proposal to the state government's Kimberley LNG hub proposal.

The Babcock & Brown satellites continue to sell down their businesses to pay off debt.

Storm Financial, one of Australia's biggest financial planning networks, has been placed in voluntary administration, casting a pall over the future of some 13,000 client portfolios.

The slash and burn by Rio Tinto in response to the collapse in commodity prices and demand has been extended to one of its key iron ore expansion projects, the $US2.15 billion ($3.09 billion) ramp-up of its Corumba iron ore mine in Brazil.

Tony Sage and his cashed-up Cape Lambert Iron Ore are set for a $6 million payout if the takeover of another of the Perth mining entrepreneur's companies, platinum junior International Goldfields, goes ahead.

 

THE AUSTRALIAN FINANCIAL REVIEW:

Page 1: Banks are boosting lending rates to large companies to take much greater account of credit risks as they anticipate a wave of loan defaults caused by rising unemployment, falling consumer spending and the bleak economic outlook.

The federal government's peak advisory body on regulating disputes over access to critical infrastructure has warned that companies will not get a "free ride" by trying to force their competitors to share privately owned facilities, including railways and ports.

Storm Financial founders Emmanuel and Julie Cassimatis rode the sharemarket boom harder than any of their financial planning peers.

Page 3: Job seekers face the toughest conditions in more than 25 years following a near-record collapse in employment vacancies, as businesses cut expansion plans.

The Rudd government has countered warnings about demands placed on the public service by its gruelling workload, while at the same time cutting costs across the bureaucracy.

Page 5: The head of GM Holden is hoping for a lift in Australian new cfar sales in the third quarter of this year, while talking up the prospects of the company's move into locally produced four cylinder cars from 2010.

He is half the man he used to be but the weight of corruption allegations remain squarely on the shoulders of Brian Burke, who yesterday appeared in a Perth court to defend charges laid by the state's powerful corruption watchdog that could send the lobbyist to gaol for up to seven years.

Page 7: The Australian Federal Police has charged a 48-year-old Perth man - believed to be the nephew of Western Australian Governor Ken Michael - with four counts of insider trading.

Page 12: OZ Minerals has temporarily arrested the rapid depletion of its cash reserves, but the struggling miner is still waiting to receive the bridging finance it needs to stay in operation until its debt refinancing issues are resolved.

 

THE AUSTRALIAN:

Page 1: Promised tax cuts could be brought forward a year as the Rudd government considers options for a second emergency package to counter the worsening global economy.

The nation's tourism sector has slammed the Rudd government for not coming to the aid of the struggling industry despite giving billions to the car industry, saying it was placed at the "back of the line" because it did not have union backing.

Page 2: The collapse of the mining boom has taken its toll on the employment outlook, with the demand for new labour slumping last month to "recession levels" across the country, particularly in the resource-rich states of Western Australia and Queensland.

Page 3: The shire council in the troubled Kimberley town of Halls Creek is lobbying against a ban on full-strength takeaway alcohol.

Business: Rio Tinto has begun its massive program of slashing capital spending and workers by shelving the $US2.15 ($3.1 billion) Corumba iron ore expansion in Brazil due to the "sever market downturn".

China's leaders are developing stimulus initiatives to be launched over the next two months with the aim of leading the recovery from the global economic slump.

Emerging West Australian iron ore producers are facing renewed Chinese interest in long-term offtake agreements before an expected drop in contract prices.

Australia's iron ore export revenue fell nearly $1 billion in November as slumping global steel demand led to a 24 per cent drop in monthly shipments.

Energy and Minerals Australia is poised to announce its initial JORC resource at its flagship Mulga Rock deposit, the largest uranium asset in Western Australia not controlled by mining giants BHP Billiton or Rio Tinto.

The investment arm of Swiss luxury goods group Richemont is taking part in negotiations to buy part of the failed Wall Street giant Lehman Brothers.

The sale of the Argyle Iron Ore project in Western Australia to private company Kimberley Metals Group has been blocked after the Supreme Court issued an interim injunction against the transaction.

The satellite funds of Babcock & Brown are strengthening their independence as the troubled investment group's bankers evaluate its future.

 

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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