22/06/2009 - 06:49

Today's Business Headlines

22/06/2009 - 06:49

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WA delays hold up $744m nitrate plant; Rio-BHP tax bill hangs on High Court hearing; States pressured on national transport agenda; Rowsthorn rules out Asciano margin loan; Glencore, Noble eye vanadium project

Today's Business Headlines

WA delays hold up $744m nitrate plant
WA's long-winded environmental approvals process is threatening to disrupt plans by Indian fertiliser tycoon Pankaj Oswal and his Norwegian partner Yara International to build a $US600 million ($744 million) ammonia nitrate plant on the Burrup Peninsula. The West

Rio-BHP tax bill hangs on High Court hearing
A High Court case this week could ultimately affect the tax treatment of BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto's $US116 billion ($144bn) Pilbara iron ore alliance. The Australian

States pressured on national transport agenda
State premiers are under pressure to agree to a national transport market, integrating the operation of roads, rail and ports by 2013, to support the federal government's $8.4 billion investment in critical economic infrastructure. The Fin Review

Rowsthorn rules out Asciano margin loan
Asciano chief Mark Rowsthorn has promised his company's board that he will not take out a margin loan to fund his involvement in a $2.35 billion capital raising. Daily Telegraph

Glencore, Noble eye vanadium project
Commodities traders Glencore International and Noble Group are thought to head a list of nine parties in the running to buy Windimurra Vanadium's almost-completed mine and plant near Mt Magnet. The West

 

THE WEST AUSTRALIAN:

Page 1: Federal opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull has vowed to hound Wayne Swan until he quits over claims the Treasurer gave a Labor "mate" preferential treatment.

Page 4: The WA Local Government Association is trying to force councils to pay higher advertising rates in a deal that will reap it millions of dollars a year, according to Treasury documents.

West Australian do not want councils to merge and the state government's reform process should look at other ways to improve services, a survey commissioned by the WA Local Government Association found.

Page 11: BHP Billiton has redeployed less than a quarter of the 650 full-time employees who lost their jobs after the closure of its Ravensthorpe nickel mine.

Page 12: The state government should declare a moratorium on major new developments in the Kimberley until it has implemented a conservation and development plan for the region, according to environmental groups.

Page 15: WA builders say local authorities which demand planning applications for single-storey homes are costing the industry millions of dollars every year.

Business: WA's long-winded environmental approvals process is threatening to disrupt plans by Indian fertiliser tycoon Pankaj Oswal and his Norwegian partner Yara International to build a $US600 million ($744 million) ammonia nitrate plant on the Burrup Peninsula.

Commodities traders Glencore International and Noble Group are thought to head a list of nine parties in the running to buy Windimurra Vanadium's almost-completed mine and plant near Mt Magnet.

China has been driving up commodities prices by stockpiling to prepare for a global recovery, but with inventories overflowing and no end to the crisis in sight, analyst say the rally may soon end.

AngloGold Ashanti had promised to releaser a pre-feasibility study for its much-vaunted Tropicana gold deposit in the eastern Goldfields by the end of this month.

Changes to superannuation rules and personal income tax rates from July 1 are the important issues to consider if you are doing any tax planning in the lead up to the end of the financial year.

 

THE AUSTRALIAN FINANCIAL REVIEW:

Page 1: State premiers are under pressure to agree to a national transport market, integrating the operation of roads, rail and ports by 2013, to support the federal government's $8.4 billion investment in critical economic infrastructure.

Treasurer Wayne Swan was under intense pressure last night over his department's treatment of Brisbane car dealer John Grant as Prime Minister Kevin Rudd expanded the Australian Federal Police investigation to include emails involving Mr Swan in the most serious political crisis to engulf the government.

The federal government will look at changing the law to make it easier for the victims of price fixing to bring legal action against colluding companies, raising the prospect on a further crackdown on cartels.

Page 3: The Australian Securities and Investments Commission is to launch a big awareness campaign targeting retail investors, amid fears that the disclosure-based regime has failed them.

Page 5: Superannuation advisers are seeing a flurry of activity in the lead up to the end of financial year as clients seek to exploit concessional tax rules that will end on June 30.

Page 13: The failed managed investment scheme Great Southern, which collapsed last month under $800 million in debt, has been forced to answer questions from the Australian Stock Exchange including why it failed to warn investors that its first tree harvest would make a loss.

 

THE AUSTRALIAN:

Page 1: The Treasury official at the centre of the car-dealer affair, Godwin Grech, is a seriously ill man who keeps a packed bag by the door of his home in case he needs to be rushed to hospital.

Stamp duty on housing loans is set to be abolished after the Henry tax review, which is likely to recommend states be given a share of income tax to make up the difference.

Page 2: A primary school, the future of which is in limbo while parents decide whether to merge with a nearby high school, has fallen through cracks in the guidelines covering the Rudd government's $14.7 billion Building the Education Revolution stimulus.

Wayne Swan has poured cold water on reports the Rudd government is set to offer its former nemesis, Peter Costello, a plum job running the $60 billion Future Fund.

Page 4: Auditor-General Ian McPhee is expected to use sweeping powers to compel those caught up in the OzCar crisis to give evidence under oath.

Business: Mining giant Xstrata has approached Anglo American about a £41 billion ($83.6bn) merger that would create a global resources house to rival BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto.

Businessman Mike Boulos is well known for creating Australia's first ethnic pay-TV business. Less well known is the authorities' 16-year pursuit of him over an alleged $1.1 million sales tax fraud.

Steve Jobs, who has been on medical leave from Apple since January to treat an undisclosed medical condition, received a liver transplant in Tennessee about two months ago.

Treasury is examining ways to wind back official bank guarantees that have allowed the big four to see off smaller competitors and led to a freeze on mortgage funds, a vital source of retiree investment income.

Shareholders can rest easy about the safety of their franking credits. The Henry tax review is not going to do away with dividend imputation, for now.

A High Court case this week could ultimately affect the tax treatment of BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto's $US116 billion ($144bn) Pilbara iron ore alliance.

 

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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