Friday, April 5, 2013


West Australian 5/4/2013
By Andrew Probyn, Federal Political Editor

James Price Point looms as Colin Barnett's political pinch point.

At some stage in the days and weeks ahead, the Premier, an economist, will be forced to acknowledge that not even his substantial political skills can bend commercial fundamentals.

Mr Barnett's preference for a giant onshore gas hub at James Price Point -- a site picked by the Premier and one that was not among the 11 potential sites identified by the Northern Development Taskforce 

-- is not going to happen.

"We are not talking about Captain Pugwash's barge with a gas pump on it," one senior source said. "We are talking about the largest floating structures supported by the biggest companies on the face of the earth. It's a global resources game-changer and it's the future."

Mr Barnett was burnt by the way he championed the Oakajee Port project when private investors found it failed to stack up financially. James Price Point will tell us whether the Premier has learnt this lesson.

Floating liquefied natural gas is a concept that seemed abstract less than a decade ago but is now a firm reality.

Under pressure: Environmentalists have protested against a gas hub at James Price Point, but technological changes make the site's use unlikely.


  1. Also in a blow to the "KLC TO's" plot to claim "Kopanger" ancestry in order to hide their millions in "Tax Free" Vanuatu bank accounts a secret file has surfaced naming names.

    Carol Martin has been in Vanuatu recently setting up the ancestry connections.


    Leaked files expose global use of tax havens

    Leaked documents containing information about secret offshore accounts and tax havens are causing headaches for business people and politicians from Canada to the Philippines.

    A 15-month investigation by journalists in 46 countries has revealed valuable information about the users of secret offshore accounts.

    Millions of leaked digital files reveal information on 120,000 offshore companies and nearly 130,000 individuals including Russian oligarchs, Canadian lawyers and Mongolian politicians.

    There is so much information contained in the files that the journalists are releasing it in waves.

    And the first wave is already causing wipe-outs.

    Questions being asked include:

    Why were three companies set up in 2008 in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) in the names of two daughters of the president of Azerbaijan?
    Why is the eldest daughter of Ferdinand Marcos, the late dictator of the Philippines, the beneficiary of a secret offshore trust?
    How did the man in charge of the French president's campaign finances come to hold shares in two companies registered in the Caymans?


    The revelations stem from media investigations of corporate data obtained as a result of Australia's Firepower scandal.

    Britain's Guardian said the information came from a leak of two million documents and emails that mainly concern the British Virgin Islands, but also the Cayman Islands.


    The European Commission reacted to the reports by calling on EU states to do more to tackle tax fraud, estimating it costs their cash-strapped governments about one trillion euros ($1.24 trillion) a year.


    The truth is also out about Australian oil and gas execs being the most highly paid on the planet.

    (nobody mention productivity)

    In a Sir Humphrey style argument the Business Council of A. wants less looking at bonuses.Cut more red tape!


    Requirements add new layer of reporting: BCA

    The new plans, which will require sharemarket-listed companies to disclose the past, present and future pay, will simply add to this, the group says.

    "Instead of bringing greater clarity to remuneration reporting, this requirement will add a new layer of reporting, while potentially increasing shareholder confusion and compliance burden for companies," the submission says.

    "The length of remuneration reports are likely to increase without providing additional clarity."

    As well, the requirements could lead to double-counting and fuel concerns that poor performance was being rewarded as some disclosed pay could relate to stronger historical performance.


    Heaven forbid!!!

  2. After being knocked back on his shonky rail plans Barnett was even more confused by further "strange" signals from his buddy Tony Abbott.


    Abbott may keep onshore gas tax

    TONY Abbott has confirmed he is considering abandoning the Coalition's commitment to scrap the government's entire mining tax package, saying he will consult with stakeholders after the election on the taxing of onshore gas projects.

    (In a move designed to confuse everybody,he continued...)

    "Now we're not against the petroleum tax because that's an existing tax. We are dead against the mining tax and that goes," he said.

    "We said before the last election that we would talk to the industry, that we would work with them to try to ensure that petroleum and gas was appropriately taxed.

    "There are changes that this government has proposed and we will work with the industry to see what the appropriate treatment is."


    Swannee smelt a rat.

    Treasurer Wayne Swan said the Mr Abbott had made a "staggering backflip".

    "They've adopted holus-bolus a substantial part of the MRRT package," he said.

    The opposition had previously promised to get rid of the MRRT in its entirety.

    In 2011 a Coalition-controlled Senate committee said the PRRT should also be scrapped.

    But the Coalition is on the hunt for extra money to fund its election promises, and would have to find even more if it scaled back the PRRT.


    (Barnett was asked to comment but was unable to speak as he was loaded into the ambulance.His condition is listed as "unstable")


    Other comments on Abbotts plan included :

    Shadow treasurer Joe Hockey says the opposition is still committed to abolishing Labor's controversial minerals resources rent tax which so far has failed to garner the revenue forecast by Treasury.

    Instead it will look at extending the petroleum resources rent tax to onshore projects, potentially capturing billions of dollars of tax revenue from the expanding CSG industry in Queensland and NSW.

    "Those in the industry paying PRRT have been generally comfortable with this," Mr Hockey told the West Australian newspaper on Friday.


    Opposition resources spokesman Ian Macfarlane says the coalition has yet to make a formal decision and will consult further with industry if it wins power on September 14.

    He acknowledged support for the extension was not necessarily a "unanimous view" within the industry.


    Assistant Treasurer David Bradbury said the change of heart had "exposed the lies" of the coalition over the past few years.

    "They have said they will repeal the mining tax and anything related to it," he told ABC radio.

    "They've been running around the country telling porkies."

    (Well at least Barnett would understand that bit)


    Swannee : ''It just shows a level of hypocrisy in the Liberal Party that is simply breathtaking.''

    Superannuation Minister Bill Shorten added that ''imitation is the sincerest form of flattery''.


  3. We know what he will find....

    East Timor would have the money it needs,BUT,Woodside will not let them and neither will the Australian government.


    DLP Senator on way to East Timor

    AUSTRALIA'S only Democratic Labor Party (DLP) Senator John Madigan is off to East Timor on a fact-finding visit to get a better understanding of the problems facing fledgling nation.

    He said the party had long been concerned about the plight of East Timor and also West Papua.

    "I felt that to do the subject justice, to help us to have a better understanding of the plight of the East Timorese and the fledgling nation, it was incumbent upon me to go there," he told AAP.

    "This my attempt to help shape the DLP's outlook on what's there. It's a part of practising what you preach."


    (Cant blame him for trying)


    And in another major drama for CSG it seems a lot of effort and money for next to no return - and it could get worse!


    Beach poised as Gladstone LNG project seeks a boost

    EXPECTATIONS are growing that the Santos-led Gladstone LNG project will need more third-party gas, with a Cooper Basin purchase from Beach Energy, a coal-seam gas buy from Origin Energy or a joint venture with Shell and PetroChina seen as the most likely options.

    Other potential buyers of the Beach gas include other potential CSG exporters, such as BG Group or the Arrow Energy joint venture between Shell and PetroChina, or AGL Energy.

    Arrow is also a potential supplier to Santos, with Shell having recently said it would consider joint ventures with third parties if they made more sense than approving its own stand-alone LNG project at Gladstone.

    Commonwealth Bank securities analyst Luke Smith said he believed the GLNG project was uneconomic, given recent cost increases and potential reliance on third-party gas but that a joint venture with Arrow could accelerate production, unlock infrastructure value and expand facilities. He said rising gas prices would make a joint venture more appealing than straight out purchases.

    Santos has said it remains open to discussions about collaboration and third-party supplies for GLNG.

    JPMorgan analysts said the value ascribed to Santos by the market implies just a 5 per cent internal rate of return, which would require another 30 per cent cost blowout and a long-term oil price of $US75 a barrel.


    One for the other side of the ledger.


    Japan cites 'sabotage' for whaling failure

    THE haul from Japan's whaling fleet in the Southern Ocean was a "record low" this year, a government minister says, blaming "unforgivable sabotage" by activists.

    The hunt netted just 103 Antarctic minke whales, less than half its tally last year and no fin whales, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Yoshimasa Hayashi said, adding it was the lowest total since “research whaling” began in 1987.

    The fleet, which was again harassed by militant environmentalist group Sea Shepherd, is due to arrive back in Japan this weekend, Mr Hayashi told a press conference.

    During the 48-day-long whaling expedition, campaigners - labelled “pirates” earlier this year by a US judge - disrupted the hunt four times and the Japanese ships spent 21 days avoiding their vessels, the Fisheries Agency said.

    Sea Shepherd committed “unforgivable sabotage,” Mr Hayashi said, according to Kyodo News, including a collision with a whaling vessel as it was being refuelled.

    “We will seek more support from other countries to conduct research whaling in a stable manner,” the minister said.

    Japan's annual whale hunt has long drawn criticism from activists and foreign governments, including Australia, but Tokyo defends the practice saying eating whale is part of the country's culinary traditions.

  4. Me thinks that's another one of Red Broomes - hes having a good week at the expense of "The Lone Voice".

    Good - Oh!