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MORE Re: INSIGHT - CN65 Re: [Fwd: [OS] AUSTRALIA/MINING -Australia treasurer rules out retreat over mining tax]

Released on 2012-02-29 14:00 GMT

Email-ID 1078390
Date 2010-05-28 04:33:23
I asked the source if it really looks like Rudd and his party would lose
to the LNP what would be the change that they backtrack on the tax, to
which he responds: Little. They've dug themselves such an enormous hole
(if you forgive the irony about the pun) that if they backtrack they will
be even worse off. It was backtracking on emissions trading which caused
their problems originally.

Jennifer Richmond wrote:

Just an opinion, of course, from the opposition.

ATTRIBUTION: Australian contact connected with the government and
natural resources
SOURCE DESCRIPTION: Former Australian Senator. Source is
well-connected politically, militarily and economically. He has become
private businessman helping foreign companies with M&As

You need to understand that the Treasurer is (a) not terribly smart, and
(b) the most appalling grub you have ever met. He has made his
political career by smear and innuendo against anyone and anything in
his way. Not a terribly satisfactory individual.
I am, as a matter of interest, campaign manager for the LNP in his seat.
It iwll be a tough ask, though, because of the redistribution.

Thought you would be interested.

-------- Original Message --------

Subject: [OS] AUSTRALIA/MINING -Australia treasurer rules out retreat
over mining tax
Date: Thu, 27 May 2010 10:28:41 -0500
From: Michael Wilson
Reply-To: The OS List
To: os >> The OS List

Australia treasurer rules out retreat over mining tax
27 May 2010 - 09H54

AFP - The architect of Australia's controversial new resources tax
rejected any weakening of the proposal Thursday, as pension funds
warned miners that their vocal opposition was only hurting share

Treasury secretary Ken Henry also denied the planned 40 percent "super
tax" on mining profits would deter investment or raise Australia's
sovereign risk, following repeated warnings by industry giants such as
Rio Tinto.

There is "a lot of colour in the debate at the moment," Henry, who
unveiled the tax earlier this month, told the Senate.

"An enormous amount has been said by mining executives and
commentators recently about the impact of the resource super profits
tax on mining investment.

"But I can say to you that today, we remain very confident of our
forecasts for mining investment included in the budget."

The government proposes updating the current royalties system with a
40 percent tax on profits over six percent, to claim a greater share
of an Asian-driven mining boom tipped to last decades.

Mining companies believe the tax is too heavy and will drive away
investment and jobs, derailing Australia's economic recovery, which
has been exceptional by developed-world standards. Several firms have
put projects on hold.

The tax has prompted a concerted industry campaign, in turn dismissed
as scare tactics by the government, including TV and newspaper adverts
and a series of public warnings.

On Thursday, a body representing Australia's mandatory pensions
industry urged the miners to tone down their "overtly political"
rhetoric, partly blaming the resources industry for a sudden slump in
share prices and fund values.

"(This) very well resourced and very consistent public relations and
media campaign is possibly causing greater uncertainty and affecting
share prices of major resources companies, in the context of some
clearly very concerning news which continues to arrive out of Europe,"
said Industry Super Network chief David Whitely.

"I think the expectation that industry super (superannuation) funds
would have on the major miners and the resources sector, as
shareholders in these companies, is that they would cease this quite
clear and overtly political campaign," Whitely told ABC Radio.

Meanwhile Henry tempered expectations that the tax's threshold might
be raised from six to 12 percent, after Treasurer Wayne Swan said he
was "not ruling any of these things in or out" during consultations
with miners.

"I am not aware of any decisions having been taken to make fundamental
changes to the tax plan," Henry said.

He also rejected suggestions that the mining industry, which accounts
for some 40 percent of Australia's exports by value, had saved the
country from recession during last year's global downturn.

"These statements are not supported by the facts," said Henry, noting
that the sector shed 15 percent of its jobs in 2009.

"Had every industry in Australia behaved in the same way, our
unemployment rate would have increased from 4.6 percent to 19 percent
in six months," he added.

A group of prominent Australian economists and academics issued a
public letter this week backing Henry's tax and dismissing the
industry campaign against it as "misinformation".

But Citi analysts Thursday warned that uncertainty around the tax
could delay some projects by up to 12 months and permanently scuttle
others, hitting government plans to return the budget to surplus
within three years.

-- Dow Jones Newswires contributed to this report --
Click here to find out more!

Michael Wilson
(512) 744 4300 ex. 4112

Jennifer Richmond
China Director, Stratfor
US Mobile: (512) 422-9335
China Mobile: (86) 15801890731