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This website is in imminent danger of being shut down. It has been online since 1995, but the personal circumstances of the owner, Malcolm Farnsworth, are such that economies have to be made. Server costs and suchlike have become prohibitive. At the urging of people online, I have agreed to see if Patreon provides a solution. More information is available at the Patreon website. If you are able to contribute even $1.00/month to keep the site running, please click the Patreon button below.


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We Shirtfront The Tsar; Abbott Says He Will Confront Putin Over MH17 At G20

Prime Minister Tony Abbott says he will “shirtfront” Russian President Vladimir Putin over the shooting of Malaysian Airlines Flight MH17.

Abbott

Abbott made his comments at a media conference at Caval Ridge Mine in the Queensland electorate of Capricornia, held by Michelle Landry. He defended and praised the coal mining industry. [Read more…]


Hockey And Cormann Hail Mining Tax Repeal As Best Possible Deal In The National Interest

Following today’s vote in the Senate to repeal the mining tax, the Treasurer, Joe Hockey, says the government has delivered on another of its election commitments.

Hockey

Hockey, speaking at a joint press conference with the Finance Minister, Senator Mathias Cormann, said the government had secured the best possible deal it could in the national interest. He attacked the Labor Party for dealing itself out of negotiations. The Palmer United Party was only relevant, Hockey said, because the ALP would not negotiate. [Read more…]


Mining Tax Abolished As Government Deals With Palmer

2.20pm – The federal government has struck a deal with Clive Palmer and the Senate has voted 36-33 to abolish the mining tax.

The agreement will see the Income Support Bonus continue until the end of 2016. The Schoolkids Bonus will also continue until the end of 2016 but will be means-tested and eligibility will cut out for family incomes above $100,000. The Low Income Super Contribution will continue in its existing form until June 30, 2017. The agreement will also see a slower increase in compulsory superannuation, with an increase to 10% from July 2021 and then by increments until it reaches 12% in 2025. [Read more…]


Abbott Pressures Parliament To Repeal Taxes By Christmas

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has repeated his call for the Parliament to repeal the carbon and mining taxes by Christmas.

With Parliament due to begin its final week for the year tomorrow, Abbott has posted a video on YouTube in which he says that “December is the time to deal with unfinished business”.

There have been suggestions in recent weeks that the government might keep the Parliament sitting closer to Christmas. In fact, the government can only determine when the House will sit and it will have dealt with the relevant legislation by the end of the week.

In the Senate, control lies with the ALP and the Greens and it is not yet clear whether the legislation will be voted on before it rises.

  • Watch Abbott’s video message (2m)

Senator Christine Milne’s Address To The National Press Club

The leader of the Australian Greens, Senator Christine Milne, has addressed the National Press Club and announced that the party’s agreement with the Gillard minority government is at end end.

Milne [Read more…]


Mining Industry Advertising Campaign Starts Again

The mining industry has turned to advertising to argue its case against increased mining taxes.

The Minerals Council of Australia has placed the advertisement below on page 9 of today’s edition of the Financial Review. It also appears in The Australian.

The advertisement comes as debate over the lack of revenue from the Gillard government’s mining tax gathers pace. It coincides with an interview yesterday with former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd in which he laid the blame for the tax at the feet of Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Treasurer Wayne Swan.

An advertising campaign by the mining industry in 2010 played a role in the downfall of Kevin Rudd.

Minerals Council



Kevin Rudd Interviewed On Anniversary Of Stolen Generations Apology

This interview with Kevin Rudd was conducted by David Speers and shown on Sky News.

Rudd discusses the anniversary of the Apology to the Stolen Generations and the retirement of Pope Benedict XVI.

He also obliquely criticises Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Treasurer Wayne Swan over their handling of the mining tax.

This is Rudd’s speech to Reconciliation South Australia on February 13, 2013:



Mining Tax Raises $126 Million In First Six Months

The Treasurer, Wayne Swan, has announced that the mining tax has raised $126 million in its first six months.

The Minerals Resource Rent Tax was budgeted to raised $2 billion in its first year.

Text of statement from the Treasurer, Wayne Swan.

Minerals Resource Rent Tax revenue

Today, the Australian Tax Office has provided the Government with combined Minerals Resource Rent Tax revenue figures for the first two quarters of the 2012-13 financial year.

Combined revenue from the first two quarters of the MRRT totalled $126m.

It’s clear revenues from resource rent taxes have taken a massive hit from the impact of continued global instability, commodity price volatility and a high dollar.

Revenues across the board are down very substantially – MRRT is a profits-based tax that raises more revenue when profits are higher and less when they are lower.

The Government has always supported increased transparency in our tax system and we believe any revenue from the MRRT should be published – which is why I am making this information public after it was received earlier today.

The Assistant Treasurer is leading the Government’s work to broaden transparency in the business tax system, including in relation to MRRT revenue, and remove any ambiguity from reporting requirements.

The information being released today was provided by the ATO following recent collections after it was satisfied disclosing two quarters’ instalments would not breach taxpayer confidentiality provisions of the Taxation Administration Act 1953.

The information provided by the ATO today is attached [PDF 99KB].


Gina Rinehart Video Message To The Sydney Mining Club

This is an extract of the video of Gina Rinehart posted on the Sydney Mining Club’s YouTube account.

Rinehart argues that Australia has become uncompetitive and too expensive for exporters because of the carbon tax and the minerals resource rent tax.

She says: “Now the evidence is unarguable – that Australia is indeed becoming too expensive and too uncompetitive to do export-orientated business.

“Our federal and state governments must know that now, more than ever, we must lift our international competitiveness just to stay as well off as we are. [Read more…]