Business

‘Australia is in trouble’: The plan to fix Australia’s tax system

Australia has more than 125 taxes at a state and federal level, but 90 per cent of revenue is raised through just 10 of them. The pressure is now on to tear up the system and start again. Eryk Bagshaw WAtoday The tax-free threshold would be scrapped, tax rates would increase for every $1000 of income earned, and savings would be targeted by the tax office under one of the most ambitious blueprints for… The proposal has been unveiled as ... Read More »

Bill Shorten: ‘We’ve got to end the climate change war’

Exclusive: Marking five years as opposition leader, Shorten tackles thorny topics – energy, offshore detention and trade Katharine Murphy The Guardian Bill Shorten has signalled Labor will keep the national energy guarantee and maintain subsidies for households and businesses to install small-scale renewable energy until 2030, as the shadow cabinet prepares to deliberate on energy policy. In a wide-ranging interview marking five years as opposition leader, Shorten also revealed Labor was in talks with the Australian Medical Association about conditions ... Read More »

What would it take for North Korea to join the IMF?

At the recent UN General Assembly, South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in was discussing North Korea’s strides to build relations and open up to the world. Ana Nicolaci da Costa BBC He said Kim Jong-un had even said he would be “willing to join the IMF and the World Bank and other international agencies”, Reuters reported. Those ambitions, if vague for now, cast a light on the challenges North Korea will face as it tries to become part of the global ... Read More »

Brussels casts pall over Tunisia’s desert jewel

New environmental rules in the EU threaten the country’s phosphate mines, which have spluttered since the revolution. Emmet Livingstone Politico REDEYEF, Tunisia — In the desert, far from Tunisia’s bustling ports, tourist beaches and sprawling olive plantations, lies a colossal state company that was once the beating heart of the national economy. Brought to its knees by inefficiency and social unrest, it is now threatened with extinction — by an obscure bit of legislation making its way through the Brussels machinery. The Compagnie ... Read More »

Ukraine accuses Russia of violating the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea

The Ukrainian delegation to the United Nations has accused the Russian side of violating the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea due to its brutal actions in the Sea of Azov, which, among other things, lead to blocking of maritime traffic. Ukrinform Ukraine made such a statement at the UNGA Sixth Committee meeting on the rule of law at the national and international levels, an Ukrinform correspondent reports. “Control over the Sea of Azov is a current Russian target, after the ... Read More »

Why so many businesses are behaving badly

While we digest the royal commission’s evidence of shocking misconduct by the banks and insurance companies, there’s another unpalatable truth to swallow: they have no monopoly on bad behaviour. Ross Gittins Brisbane Times It seems almost everywhere you look you see examples of companies behaving badly. In a major speech he gave a few months ago, the chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Rod Sims, offered a remarkable list of business household names the commission was taking proceedings ... Read More »

Cooperation needed to tackle fisheries subsidies

In July 2016, an arbitral tribunal established that China — through failing to exercise due diligence in preventing Chinese-flagged vessels fishing in various locations in the South China Sea — had violated the… Margaret Young EastAsiaForum China had not, the tribunal found, exhibited due regard for the Philippines’ sovereign rights with respect to fisheries in its exclusive economic zone (EEZ). China was also found to have breached provisions in the Convention relating to the protection of marine environment. The findings ... Read More »

Vestager on her EU plans: ‘I’m a mistake, it can happen again’

‘I feel we’re in the middle of something [and] we’re not done,’ the competition commissioner said. Joshua Posaner Politico STRBSKE PLESO, Slovakia — Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager told POLITICO Friday she had made clear to the Danish government that she would like to keep her job in the next mandate, even though her party is in… “Compared to Danish tradition, I’m a mistake, usually it’s the bigger party in government that would make the commissioner,” the competition czar said of ... Read More »

‘Prepared to go to PRISON’ Pimlico Plumbers founder REFUSES to take down anti-Brexit sign

A TV host quizzed Remain campaigner Charlie Mullins over his anti-Brexit sign outside Pimlico Plumbers demanding to know whether it was a “good idea” as the founder claimed he is prepared to go to prison rather than take it down. Darren Hunt Express Former Conservative doner and Pimlico Plumbers founder Charlie Mullins erected a sign over his company’s London HQ proclaiming “Brexit – Nobody voted to be poorer.” RT host Bill Dod asked whether it was “wise marketing” to install the ... Read More »

EU to hit Cambodia with trade sanctions, says Myanmar may follow

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union told Cambodia on Friday it will lose its special access to the world’s largest trading bloc, and said it was considering similar trade sanctions for Myanmar in a toughening of EU policy on human rights in Southeast Asia. Robin Emmott, Philip Blenkinsop After months of pressure from rights groups and the European Parliament, the EU’s trade chief Cecilia Malmstrom said the bloc was ready to punish abuses in both countries by removing trade preferences. ... Read More »

Why Europe Overlooks Trump’s Threat, Increases Russian Gas Imports

European consumers see no reason for abandoning cheap Russian pipeline gas and substituting it for expensive American super-chilled fuel. While Washington is fuming over the Russian-European energy cooperation, EU member states are increasingly buying Russian… Sputnik Despite US threats and reprimands, Europe remains stuck with Russian gas. Speaking at the Russia Energy Week (REW) forum, President Vladimir Putin highlighted that the country’s gas exports to the EU were about to reach 200 billion cubic meters (bcm) in… Why Europe Overlooks… Read More »

Hunting Hydrocarbons

Subsea gliders are taking to the oceans to hunt for an ever wider array of anthropomorphic and chemical signatures to an ever greater accuracy. Elaine Maslin Marine Technology Ocean glider systems are maturing. Since emerging in the 2000s, they’ve opened up new possibilities for ocean observation and monitoring. But, these possibilities are continuing to expand, including to gas seep surveys, leak detection, mammal monitoring and oil spill monitoring, for the offshore oil and gas industry. The primary attraction of ocean ... Read More »

Tanzania law punishing critics of statistics ‘deeply concerning’: World Bank

DAR ES SALAAM (Reuters) – The World Bank said it was deeply concerned about new Tanzanian legislation which would punish anyone who questions official statistics, saying the law would undermine the production of useful and… Lawmakers last month passed amendments to the Statistics Act that would impose fines, at least three years jail time, or both, on anyone who questioned the accuracy of official figures. The attorney general said the changes were needed to… Opposition groups and other critics have ... Read More »

Pipeline Dreams

Eastern Mediterranean gas creates new allies—and deepens old enmities John Psaropoulos the weekly Standard Athens On January 30, the deepwater drillship Saipem 12000 sent its drill bit into a cavern beneath one-and-a-quarter miles of water and a mile of rock in the eastern Mediterranean. The Italian oil and gas company Eni, which had contracted the ship, announced a week later that the cavern, called Calypso, was “an extended gas column,” containing an estimated six to eight trillion cubic feet of ... Read More »

11 Takeaways From The Times’s Investigation Into Trump’s Wealth

Donald J. Trump built a business empire and won the presidency proclaiming himself a self-made billionaire, and he has long insisted that his father, the legendary New York City builder Fred C… By Russ Buettner, Susanne Craig and David Barstow The New York Times “I built what I built myself,” the president has repeatedly said. But an investigation by The New York Times has revealed that Donald Trump received the equivalent today of at least $413 million from his father’s ... Read More »

Equality: our secret weapon to fight corruption

“We look after our mates,” Australia’s new prime minister, Scott Morrison, has declared. He’s said it on several occasions, in fact. So it must be a value he thinks important. Meanwhile the man he defeated for the top job, Peter Dutton, has been embroiled in controversy over allegedly using his… Tony Ward The Conversation Where do we draw the line between looking after a mate and being corrupt? The line, like beauty, is often in the eye of the beholder. ... Read More »