It’s quite a site — and not one hardened miners of WA’s rugged North West are used to.
Set against a red dirt background, Hancock Prospecting’s chairwoman Gina Rinehart and Dr Patricia Kailis AM OBE, of Kailis Pearls fame, yesterday christened Australia’s only pink locomotives at Roy Hill’s Port Hedland rail yard.
The two GE locomotives — named For Mothers and Women of the North — have been added to Roy Hill’s existing fleet of 21 GE trains, and have been painted pink in recognition of Mrs Rinehart’s support for patients and research into breast cancer.
“The name (For Mothers) is in honour of all mothers, especially those affected, by breast cancer and related cancers,” she said.
“This dreadful disease is still the most commonly diagnosed cancer in Australia, with eight women dying from the disease every day — far, far too many.”
Hitched up to the locomotives will be 130 pink ore cars recently delivered by the China Railway Rolling Stock Corporation.
“These cars, when attached to one of our new GE pink locomotives will create a striking image as they forge their way across the Pilbara,” Mrs Rinehart said.
“May these pink trains continue to inspire us to do more for breast cancer patients and support research to help fight this truly terrible and sad disease.”
But the pink parade didn’t stop there. Mrs Rinehart later flew from Port Hedland to Roy Hill to christen the sixth fleet of pink Hitachi haul trucks at the mine.
The first pink truck to be christened was named Melinda after one of Hancock’s accounting team based in Perth, who was diagnosed with breast cancer at the young age of 27 but is now in remission.
Joint venture partners Rio Tinto and Hancock Prospecting have opened the Baby Hope mine, a fourth Hope Downs operation that boasts the use of automation.
Hope Downs, in the Pilbara of Western Australia, is already comprised of three major open pit mines – Hope 1 North, Hope 1 South and Hope 4 – producing high-grade lump and fines products.
Baby Hope is around four kilometres south-west of the Hope Downs 1 South deposit, and immediately north of the Lang Hancock rail line.
The development of the Baby Hope deposit will sustain the existing capacity of and ongoing jobs at Hope Downs 1. All necessary government and environmental approvals for Baby Hope have been secured.
Hope Downs 1 and 4 produced 46.9 million tonnes (Mt) of iron ore last year, representing one of Australia’s largest and most successful iron ore projects in the lower cost quartile.
A total of 28 existing haul trucks at the Hope Downs 1 mine will be retrofitted with autonomous haulage system (AHS) technology and three production drills at the Hope Downs 4 mine with autonomous drilling system (ADS) technology by 2020.
The automation is expected to bring productivity and safety gains to the mine’s existing fleet. The equal joint venture (JV) was created when Rio Tinto bought in to Hope Downs in 2005, after Hancock completed a bankable feasibility study (BFS) and exploration.
Rio Tinto Iron Ore chief executive Chris Salisbury said, “This investment will ensure sustainable production levels at the Hope Downs 1 operation.”
Speaking at the mine opening, Hancock Prospecting executive chairman Gina Rinehart thanked Rio for its investment in Baby Hope and other Hope Downs mines.
“As Hancock and some at Rio know, I have been pushing to see the development of Baby Hope, and I am excited that now the Baby Hope mine will be a welcome contributor to the future success of Hope Downs,” Rinehart said.
Tad Watroba, who has been involved in the Hope Downs project since 1991, said, “Gina Rinehart’s drive, hard work, determination and vision over decades has been essential in developing Hope Downs.
“It was not an easy path for Hancock, a then small company, to complete years of hard work to progress these major mines which make a huge contribution to Australia.”
Hope Downs was named after Rinehart’s mother, Hope, and was developed by a series of significant discovery by Rinehart’s father, Lang Hancock, who uncovered major iron ore deposits in the Pilbara.
“Indeed, about 10 of which now form major mines for Rio Tinto, plus Hope Downs,” Rinehart said.
Hancock and Rio shared a long history that went back to the early 1960’s.
Salisbury said, “Together, we have played an instrumental role in developing the Pilbara and remain committed to pioneering new ways to innovate and improve our business for the future.”
One of ANDEV’s founding members Ron Manners has sent me this article on Special Economic Zones. It is worth a read and there are links in the article to further interesting information. Ron is Managing Director of Mannwest Group. He is also Emeritus Chairman of the Australian Mining Hall of Fame Ltd and a Fellow of both the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, and the Australian Institute of Company Directors. His contributions to industry and Australia have been marked by several awards including being elected as a Mining Legend at the 2005 Excellence in Mining and Exploration Conference in Sydney. In 2010 Ron was appointed to the Board of Overseers for the Atlas Economic Research Foundation, Washington, DC.
China continues to drive its economic growth by creating innovative SEZ’s. Eastern European countries like Macedonia have set up SEZ’s and attracted international companies that have brought investment and jobs. Australian politicians refuse to accept this successful economic development policy.
The Australian economy, meaning the private sector has to overcome the dead weight of the big rock of government regulation every minute of every dy. The attached article in the Australian newspaper on Monday clearly documents this burden. This cost has skyrocketed especially in Queensland and Victoria. In Victoria the cost is annually $28.6 B which is 45% of the States total general revenue! The total increase in the cost across all States and Federal Government over the four years to 2018/19 is $20.46 B.
Mrs. Gina Rinehart was tonight awarded the Champion of Entrepreneurship Award at the 2018 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year awards.
The Champion of Entrepreneurship award is an award at both regional and national levels and is awarded to a leader with a long-term record of outstanding entrepreneurial achievement.
Being selected to receive this lifetime achievement award is a testament to the outstanding entrepreneurial success of the Champion over many years.
This year and in recognition of sustained, outstanding entrepreneurial achievement, the 2018 Champion of Entrepreneurship is awarded to Mrs. Gina Rinehart. Mrs Rinehart, as Executive Chair of the HPPL group, Roy Hill and Kidman & Co, has significantly invested in Australia over decades in primary industries, creating thousands of jobs, opportunities for many, and billions of dollars of tax revenue. She received the Diggers and Dealers award twice, and more recently this year received the inaugural award for her contribution to West Australia’s development, in addition to other awards. Mrs Rinehart’s dedicated leadership and efforts changed the then troubled Hancock Prospecting Group, to the most successful private company in West Australia’s history, under her executive chairmanship.
Mrs Rinehart has been the leading light in the development of Northern Australia. She set up Australians For Northern Development and Economic Vision to wake up the community and political leaders to the potential that lies untapped in our North. She has directed many of her private investments into Northern Australia. A true pioneer and entrepreneurial Australian.
The Ernst and Young awards were held at a black tie ceremony at the Crown Towers, Perth. Due to international commitments, Mrs. Rinehart was unable to attend, however her goddaughter, Jennifer, proudly accepted the award on her behalf.
Mrs Rinehart sends her sincerest apologies for being unable to attend in person tonight however she is honoured to accept this award in recognition of her long-term achievement and significant contribution to the Australian economy and community.
As you would be aware, Mrs Rinehart is a leading figure in the Australian business community who has a long and proud history of investing in Australia, creating thousands of jobs and providing opportunities for many.
Since becoming Executive Chairman of the financially troubled Hancock Prospecting Group in 1992, Mrs Rinehart has steered the group to become one of Australia’s most successful, diverse and iconic businesses. With major achievements including the development of the mega Roy Hill project, the construction of three major iron ore mines at Hope Downs with joint-venture partner Rio Tinto, with a fourth to be completed this year, and the considerable expansion of Hancock’s agricultural business, now the second largest producer of cattle in Australia and encompassing the world class 2GR Wagyu and Bannister Downs Dairy. Hancock Prospecting, after decades of Mrs Rinehart’s hard work and effort, is now Australia’s largest private taxpayer paying more than $3 billion in taxes since 2011.
A deeply philanthropic woman, Mrs Rinehart’s generous and special charitable endeavours are only possible because of her exceptional entrepreneurial skills and include a number of women’s health and children’s rights organisations like the Path of Hope Foundation and Parkerville Children and Youth Care Foundation, support for defence personnel through the SAS Resources Trust, Breast Cancer research and care facilities including a $5m dollar donation for the major redevelopment of St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney and her now famous pink mining trucks in recognition of the fight against breast cancer. Through her success in business and personal efforts funds were able to be provided for the rebuild of the new Ronald MacDonald House here in Perth and the also overseas to Cambodian Children’s Fund, and these are just to name a few. A champion for equality, women’s rights and education and the fight against violence against women and children, Mrs Rinehart is an inspiration not just for women in the business community to work hard, excel and become an entrepreneur for but all Australians to be inspired by and proud of.
With a passion and vision of creating a better Australia, with reduced red tape, economic stability and recognition of the importance of the agricultural and mining industries in Australia’s future, Mrs Rinehart is an iconic and worthy recipient of this award and I am proud to accept it on her behalf.
Farm Online, Daniel Wild, Research Fellow, Institute of Public Affairs
Red tape is destroying farming communities, yet the best the Turnbull government can do is launch another review.
At end of March, the government announced it would undertake a review into the red tape imposed on farmers by federal environmental regulation.
But this review, like most others, will end up providing a massive pay day for the bureaucrats who run it, only to sit on the shelf and gather dust for decades to come.
What is so troubling is that the government is not taking this issue seriously.
In announcing the review, the government said they would be “weeding out unnecessary red tape for farmers.”
Red tape is more than just a few weeds that need to be pulled out.
Only root and branch reform, involving the total extermination of red tape, and the bureaucratic pests which impose it, will help restore prosperity and opportunity to the agricultural sector.
Here’s how to do it.
Firstly, the Commonwealth government should announce a moratorium on all new rules being imposed on the agricultural sector for the next five years. As it currently stands, many farmers are not even aware of the rules that apply to them. And how could they be? Seemingly every week a new rule is introduced at the local, state, or federal level. Busy and productive landowners simply cannot keep up. They haven’t got all day to sit around reading the official government registrar of new rules when there are fields to be ploughed, cows to be miked, and livestock to be attended to.
Secondly, the Commonwealth government should remove itself from regulating the agricultural sector. That sector is already heavily regulated at state and local levels. Additional interference at the federal level just leads to more duplication and overlap.
Thirdly, the greatest red tape impost occurs at the state level through native vegetation regulation. Such laws require private landowners to maintain or expand the extent of native vegetation on their private property. This effectively results in the sterilisation of productive farmland, which can severely undermine the economic potential of that farmland and throw farmers and their families into chaos.
Moreover, this is greatly insulting to farmers. They know far more than city-based bureaucrats about how to sustainably manage their farmland. After all, many farmers have been on the land for generations. They know what they are doing. If green groups feel so strongly about native vegetation, then they should buy their own land, not force farmers to give up their livelihood.
While native vegetation regulation is a state issue, there is one thing the feds can do. Whenever a state government sterilises privately held land to conserve native vegetation, the Commonwealth government should redirect a portion of the relevant state’s GST share to the affected farmer. This would rapidly change the incentives that state governments face, and ensure farmers are properly compensated for the forced sterilisation of their productive farmland.
But it’s not just our farmers that are suffering under the weight of red tape. Red tape in Australia is at a crisis point. Each year red tape reduces economic output by a staggering $176 billion, which is 11 per cent of GDP. This makes red tape Australia’s largest industry.
Thanks to red tape and high taxes, business investment in Australia is just 12 per cent of GDP, which is lower than what it was during the economically hostile Whitlam years. Wages growth is stagnating. And more than 700,000 Australians are without work.
Now is not the time for another review. Now is the time for action. The Turnbull government must cut red tape to unleash to productive potential of Australia’s farmers.
Daniel Wild is a Research Fellow with the Institute of Public Affairs
Allison Adani*, The Sunday Mail (Qld) July 7, 2018 10
CAMPBELL Newman made a fatal error when he sacked 14,000 Queensland public servants.
It really should’ve been at least five times that number.
His bold attempt to save the Queensland taxpayers billions and to sharpen frontline government services by eliminating a quagmire of unnecessary red tape in middle management failed miserably.
But never fear. Many of those clowns are now back at the public circus on hefty contracts (with their previous redundancy safely tucked away in a term deposit).
Alternatively, they’ve happily moved on to brighter horizons and been duly replaced (almost three-fold) by the Palaszczuk Labor Government.
How do I know? Because as a lowly ranked public servant I have to deal with the frustration of that increasingly inefficient, bloated, empowered and entitled middle management every moment of every workday.
Newman’s noble attempts unfortunately created a voting bloc of angry left-leaning union-fuelled sycophants who carry out the bidding of whatever bumbling, stumbling, mumbling minister they dutifully work under.
Now no Queensland politician of any stripe would dare go anywhere near the over 220,000-strong public circus or suggest “savings” or “efficiencies”.
Queensland has unconsciously handed over control to the unions who are the actual string-pullers of state government.
A risk-averse, gutless government has resulted in a nil-risk public service full of yay-saying nodding dogs.
You can catch us every weekday morning marching in perfect stride, three abreast along George or Albert streets in corporate dress and running shoes.
We disappear into our office fortresses as we proudly don our government IDs complete with PC rainbow-coloured lanyards (we are instructed not to wear ID in public lest we be accosted by kidnappers or terrorists).
The glass security doors glide open as we obsequiously submit to another day of self-perpetuating chaos.
At our designer standup desk bubble, we feel safe in the knowledge that our jobs are secure and our superannuation is accruing exponentially.
All of this while Roma burns; (or any other town outside of the southeast corner actually).
A rigorous regime of learnt helplessness trains us to dutifully close our eyes to an increasingly toxic culture where bullying by workplace sociopaths is rewarded by promotion and plaudits by the powerful.
We amuse ourselves with almost daily morning teas in our “pods”, serving up tasteless gluten-free fare so the vegans and coeliacs are catered for above all others (not that they ever actually lower their exacting standards to indulge themselves).
Within an apparently “caring, equitable, inclusive” environment we have an officially sanctioned, incredibly worthy, ultra-PC “cause of the week”.
It is always front of mind courtesy of a propagandist barrage of emails, posters, screensavers and foyer displays (complete with free stuff like pens, notepads and lollies).
Apparently, the biggest blight on the public circus landscape are white, middle-aged males who are treated with increasing disdain.
This endemic attitude is perpetrated by Annastacia’s “petticoat government” (as my dear old Dad would say).
Now at less than 35 per cent of the public circus, men have targets on their foreheads, courtesy of a recruitment process that is obviously skewed against them (unless they exhibit some obvious diversity or a serious disability).
There is lots of talk about “Girl Power” and high-fives around the corridors as fan-girls celebrate the latest feats of valour by Annastacia, Jackie, Grace (x2), Yvette and the lolly pink-lipsticked dragon-slayer and Minister for Everything (or nothing) – Kate Jones.
Of course, those of us girls who refuse to join in on the crowing and cooing are ostracised from the all-important Friday afternoon “woine toime” at the pub where all the real business (i.e. gossip) gets done.
Management in cahoots with HR, design selection criteria that renders it virtually impossible for anyone other than insiders or worded-up mates and relatives to get a look-in on jobs. The process requires a “Da Vinci Code” style of specific language and buzzwords that only allows for mindless box-ticking by cobbled-together selection panels.
The Government points proudly to its “Working for Queensland” survey which apparently shows all of us in the circus delighted with our lot in life.
The problem is that everyone is terrified to speak out truthfully as the mandatory questions in the supposedly anonymous survey easily identify individual respondents.
The “code of conduct” with its very strict rules and regulations is used as a big stick by management, effectively smothering any acting or thinking creatively or offering innovative solutions to Queensland’s increasingly complex problems.
This all helps breed an environment of mistrust, backstabbing and an obsession with holidays, retirement plans or the golden public circus panacea – sick leave.
I’ve taken to collecting “early retirement as a result of sickness” stories with an astonishing list of excuses. (Getting taken away in an ambulance from anywhere near George, William or Albert streets is advised for maximum dramatic effect).
Depression and anxiety are rife, but with little choice and fear of the non-cloistered world outside we stay put, hating our jobs, hating our colleagues and hating our lives.
So what does someone like me do? Hope for a change of government in Queensland? (I wish!) Stay and descend further and further into the malaise? Or just leave?
Well, no. The wages are good, the super is great and besides, I’d miss all those yummy morning teas.
For a country which has benefited immensely from the liberal international order and modern economic development, Australia has done remarkably little to facilitate the development of some of its own territory.
Northern Australia – usually defined as everything above the Tropic of Capricorn – has always been the poor relation of the more densely-populated areas of New South Wales, Victoria, and southern Queensland.
Although it accounts for roughly half of Australia’s landmass, it is home to only 5.5% of the population, and generates only 11.7% of GDP. And while the harsh climate and lack of infrastructure linking it to the rest of the country pose challenges, there are ample economic opportunities to be unlocked by a government with the vision to create effective policy.
The vision set out for the north of Australia has so far failed to get underway; though things looked positive during the mining boom, a strategy for long-term development and success needs to be implemented. The north, with its ports, agriculture and abundant untapped primary resources, has huge potential to grow its population, improve employment, and support emerging markets in Asia.
Change appeared to be on the horizon in 2015, when the Australian government released the inspiring-sounding Our North, Our Future: White Paper on Developing Northern Australia which outlined that:
“It is not the Commonwealth Government’s role to direct, or be the principal financier of, development. Developing the north is a partnership between investors (local and international investors who provide capital and know-how) and governments (that create the right investment conditions).”
While the document set a promising tone, it has yet to translate into effective policy. One outcome of the White Paper was the establishment of the Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility, an initiative which, in theory, operates in partnership with businesses to develop vital infrastructure. In the two years since the initiative was established, it has approved just two loans totalling $23.98 million – a tiny fraction of the $5 billion allocated when it was created.
Rather than trying to develop the north by government edict, it’s time for a different approach, ideally the use of Special Economic Zones. Special Economic Zones (SEZs) are specific regions within a nation which have tax, tariff, and other regulatory incentives to promote investment. While SEZs are not a guarantee of success, Northern Australia is a perfect example of a region that could benefit from them.
Establishing SEZs in Northern Australia would allow for the sort of business-led development the government called for back in 2015. A streamlined regulatory process, including reformed labour market regulations, and reduced business and personal income tax rates will encourage businesses and individuals to move north.
The trouble is, the Australian Constitution explicitly prohibits the creation of such zones in the States. And while the constitution can be amended, it very rarely is.
Fortunately, a significant part of the region is the Northern Territory. Unlike states, territories are the domain of the federal parliament, meaning an SEZ is perfectly feasible. SEZs provide a testing ground for changes in tax and regulation, and this could be done in the Northern Territory. If successful, zones could then be created in the rest of the north if the Commonwealth gave states power over regulation and tax rates.
In the 2015 white paper, the government stated that it would not create a Special Economic Zone in the north because it wanted to implement reforms “which are in the national scope” – this has hampered the growth of the north and is completely meaningless.
John McLaren of Charles Darwin University has argued that if the government is serious about developing Northern Australia, it needs to consider tax reform. McLaren argues that without taxation benefits the north will not attract investment and will remain relatively undeveloped.
The need for action is obvious. Since 2015 Australia has fallen in The World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business rankings, while the Northern Territory is 10th out of Australia’s 13 regions in terms of contribution to GDP growth over the past three decades.
This is especially frustrating as both the Territory and Northern Australia as a whole have huge potential in primary and extractive industries, tourism, and agriculture. Given its geography, there is also ample scope to enhance Australia’s trade with its neighbours.
With 11 of its top 15 trading partners in Asia, that matters for both the Australian economy and emerging economies in the region.
SEZs in Northern Australia would encourage investment from all over the world and enhance Australia’s already exports of agricultural products and primary resources, helping to provide food and infrastructure which Asia needs.
Encouraging the development of the north will also lead to greater connectivity by establishing a major city on the north coast, much closer to the Asian capitals than Sydney or Perth. A feasibility report has been published by Australian Venture Consultants who have argued the case for establishing the north-western town of Broome as a major city in the north. It already has the basic infrastructure needed to establish a hub in the region, and its geography, seaport, and international airport make it an ideal civic centre to further develop as the effective “Capital of the North”.
It is time for politicians to translate their warm words into meaningful action and give the long-neglected north the attention it deserves. Should they do so, the benefits for both Australia and its neighbours would be substantial.