WA law crisis averted

NEW WA Attorney-General Jim McGinty has headed off on his first interstate outing in his new job, having already played a key role in the resolution of one of the biggest conflicts concerning WA business.

At a meeting with Federal Liberal counterpart Daryl Williams last week, the Labor Minister agreed to refer Corporations Law matters to the Commonwealth, ending the threat that up to 60,000 WA-registered companies could be treated as foreign entities elsewhere in Australia.

The irony is that Mr McGinty’s predecessor, Peter Foss, had failed to find a compromise with his fellow Liberal and Western Australian, Mr Williams.

Mr Foss had argued that consti-tutional change was needed to address problems which had arisen from Federal administration of state laws, and the Corporations Law crisis was an appropriate catalyst for that change.

Mr Williams and the bigger states disagreed, threatening to cut off WA, a move that alarmed local business groups.

Mr McGinty, who is attending the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General in Adelaide today where the Corporations Law will be discussed, said he was looking for a practical way of dealing with a complex constit-utional problem


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