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Will dodgy directors get to keep burning companies all summer long? - Media Release

WILL DODGY DIRECTORS GET TO KEEP BURNING COMPANIES ALL SUMMER LONG?

Tomorrow will mark one month since the Turnbull Government announced it would finally introduce a director identification number to take action on illegal phoenix activity, but the public is yet to see any draft legislation.

There are only three joint sitting weeks left in the year. Dodgy directors could continue scamming honest businesses, employees and taxpayers all through summer if Malcolm Turnbull delays any further.

The Government hasn’t clarified whether acquiring a director identification number will require a 100-point identity check – a fundamental aspect of the proposal Labor announced in May. Bizarrely, Minister Kelly O’Dwyer has even linked a director identification number to the use of biometric data.

The Government keeps missing deadlines on a register of beneficial ownership, something they’re yet to commit to making public. 

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Queenslanders’ $50m fuel slug - Media Release

QUEENSLANDERS’ $50M FUEL SLUG

Brisbane drivers have forked over around $50 million more annually than their interstate counterparts since 2009 due to a lack of competition.

Today’s findings by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission show the dangers of concentrated markets.

These findings back in Labor’s calls for increased fines for anti-competitive conduct, and a completely independent market studies function for the competition watchdog.

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Technology, Transitions and Teachers in The Tocsin

Technology, Transitions and Teachers*

The Tocsin
Published by the John Curtin Research Centre
Issue 2, October 2017

Andrew Leigh

The twentieth century saw an explosion in technologies, from aircraft to radio, antibiotics to smartphones. Living standards rose massively. Yet the middle of that century – the 1920s to the 1970s – saw the largest reduction in inequality in Australian history.

Australia today faces two intertwined challenges. First, how do we continue the pace of innovation in the twenty-first century that we saw in the twentieth? Second, how do we ensure that prosperity is broadly shared? As it happens, I will argue that a single policy recommendation offers the greatest promise to make us more entrepreneurial and more equal.

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Caring Communities - OpEd, The Chronicle

One School’s Desire to Do Better

The Chronicle, 3 October 2017

Ainslie School celebrated its 90th birthday last month, proud of its past and looking towards the future. Opened by Prime Minister Stanley Bruce in 1927, the school is distinguished by its Art Deco architecture and its honour boards. There’s an old-fashioned phone in the foyer, and some say that the library is haunted by a friendly ghost called Mary.

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Australian Lessons on Gun Control - Opinion Piece, Washington Post

AUSTRALIAN LESSONS ON GUN CONTROL

Washington Post, 6 October 2017

Australia experienced our deadliest mass shooting in 1996 after gunman Martin Bryant killed 35 people in and around the Port Arthur tourist site. Twelve days later — before all the victims had been laid to rest — Australia’s police ministers met and unanimously agreed on a package of measures to tighten licensing and registration requirements, restrict access to semi-automatic weapons and limit sales.

The national government coordinated a buyback program, which paid market prices for guns that were handed back. Over the next year, more than 600,000 firearms — about one in five of all guns in Australia — were handed into police stations. Given the harrowing loss of life in the United States to gun violence, it’s worth understanding the impact of the Australian reforms.

Did it stop gun massacres? Following the tragic mass shooting in Las Vegas this week, some have dismissedAustralia’s buyback as ineffective, asserting that mass shootings were too rare in Australia prior to the buyback to show any clear evidence of progress.

Alas, that isn’t correct. If we define a mass shooting as the killing of five or more victims, Australia experienced an average of one mass shooting per year in the decade to 1996. In the decade after, no mass shootings took place. The chance of this being due to luck alone is less than 1 in 100.

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If you make cuts to those at the bottom then you can't be surprised when there is a backlash against globalisation - Transcript, RN Drive

E&OE TRANSCRIPT
TELEVISION INTERVIEW
ABC RN DRIVE
MONDAY, 2 OCTOBER 2017 
 
SUBJECT/S; Asylum seeker policy, Marriage equality postal survey, New book 'Choosing Openness'.
 
PATRICIA KARVELAS: I'm joined by Labor Shadow Assistant Treasurer, Andrew Leigh. Welcome back to RN Drive.
ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Thank you Patricia, good to be with you.
KARVELAS: So Labor restarted offshore processing and the Coalition has of course maintained it in their 4 years in power. Do you both bear some responsibility for what we're seeing here, 6 deaths on Manus Island.
LEIGH: Patricia, the first thing to say is Labor's thoughts - like those of all Australians - are with the families of the deceased. We need to move slowly and deliberately when we're dealing with issues like this as indeed you did there with your comments on the Las Vegas shooting. We're dealing with a loss of life. Labor have asked to be briefed and certainly we're not about to start politicising that death.
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How to Best Secure Australia's Prosperity - Transcript, AM Agenda

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

TELEVISION INTERVIEW

SKY NEWS – AM AGENDA

MONDAY, 2 OCTOBER 2017 

 

SUBJECTS: Marriage equality postal survey, energy crisis, new book ‘Choosing Openness’, trade, immigration, foreign investment.

KIERAN GILBERT, PRESENTER: This is AM Agenda. With me now is the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh. In relation to the Government and the states, what are your thoughts on GST held back in return for the states lifting these moratoriums. Do you think that is a good move?

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Seems to be the blame game all over again, doesn't it Kieran? You’ve got a government that has been unwilling to impose a national interest test, unwilling to pull the gas trigger, unwilling to put in place a Clean Energy Target that their own hand-picked Chief Scientist recommended. And now they want to take money away from schools and hospitals across various states simply because they have been unable to put the right policies in place on gas.

GILBERT: They didn't have to pull the trigger, did they? They got the companies to agree to doing it themselves voluntarily.

LEIGH: Kieran, I remember back in April when Malcolm Turnbull was telling us that gas prices were going to halve. My guess is most of your viewers haven't seen that halving yet. The Turnbull Government has been a lot talk on this but unwilling to take tough action. When Labor put in place a national interest policy last year, we were criticised by Josh Frydenberg as being protectionist. Had the Government moved with Labor a year ago, we would be in a better place than we are now.

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Stronger advocacy for openness - Transcript, ABC News

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

TELEVISION INTERVIEW

ABC NEWS BREAKFAST

SUNDAY, 1 OCTOBER 2017 

 

SUBJECTS: New book ‘Choosing Openness’, trade, immigration, foreign investment, Turnbull tax proposals, Labor’s fairer tax plan, inequality.

MIRIAM COROWRA, PRESENTER: Cutting the company tax rate and stimulating wage growth are two key issues that have been topping the political agenda this week. The Treasurer warned that if these two issues are not addressed now Australia risks falling behind the rest of the world and the nation's economy will suffer. 

GREG JENNET, PRESENTER: To discuss this and other political issues of the week we're joined by Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh from Parliament House in Canberra. Andrew Leigh, you've just written a report for the Lowy Institute which is normally preoccupied with matters of national security and strategic policy. Why is the subject of income inequality being bracketed in among those topics? 

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Greg, I think one of the central challenges of our age is this rise in right-wing populism. We've seen not only the British Brexit decision and the rise of Donald Trump, but also right-wing parties in Germany and Austria and Hungary really making the argument that those countries would be better off retreating from the global economy. My new book Choosing Openness argues that for Australia that would be the wrong choice, and that our prosperity has been grounded very much in the benefits of open trade, migration and foreign investment. We need to manage those things properly. As you say, there's been a significant rise in inequality in the past generation. But if we have the right social protections, then Australia can benefit significantly from engaging with the world. 

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Openness in a Populist World - Transcript, Sky Business

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

TELEVISION INTERVIEW

TICKY WITH FULLERTON – SKY NEWS

THURSDAY, 28 SEPTEMBER 2017 

SUBJECTS: New book Choosing Openness, trade and foreign investment, energy policy, Malcolm Turnbull’s tax cuts for millionaires and multinationals, Labor’s fairer tax plan, migration, inequality.

TICKY FULLERTON, PRESENTER: Well it's all very interesting timing for our first chat with Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh, who is launching a new book for the Lowy Institute called Choosing Openness, why global engagement is best for Australia. In a former life Andrew Leigh was also a professor of economics at the Australian National University, so what does he make of the state that Australia and the world is in? I spoke with him earlier.

Andrew Leigh it's great to get you there. Now this is not the first book you've written, you're making the case for openness in trade, migration, investment in this populist world.

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: Well it is a world in which people are encouraging a hunkering down, in which we're seeing a rise of right-wing populism not just in the United States, Austria, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands but indeed in our own country. And part of that harks back to the notion that for most of human history, we did live in very small groups of about 150 or so, where being distrustful of outsiders was a good survival strategy. The trouble is that now engaging with outsiders is actually the best path to prosperity and i'm making the case in Choosing Openness that if we have the right social programs to support engagement with the world, then Australia can benefit through trade, migration and investment.

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Openness from a Progressive Perspective - Transcript, 2GB

E&OE TRANSCRIPT

RADIO INTERVIEW

2GB MONEY WITH ROSS GREENWOOD

THURSDAY, 28 SEPTEMBER 2017 

SUBJECTS: New book Choosing Openness, German election, migration, inequality, energy policy.

ROSS GREENWOOD, HOST: Welcome back to Money News right around Australia. It's actually appropriate that you've actually got all this talk about Donald Trump and tax and globalisation and what happens to Australia now. Are we driven down a lower tax path? Is there more appetite in Australia to try and maintain competitiveness on tax with the largest economy in the world, and one that we have a free trade agreement with because, obviously, the free-flow of goods between the two countries is going to be influence by the cost of a whole bunch of things - it could be energy, it could be labour, or indeed it could be taxes as well. Now, it's appropriate I say, because today the Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh, who is also the Shadow Minister for Competition and Productivity, and for Trade in Services, has launched a new book that raises, in his mind, a whole bunch of questions. It is called 'Choosing Openness' and it makes a timely intervention into the debate about globalisation, free trade, but also immigration, which is a key issue. Let's get him on the line now. Many thanks for your time, Andrew

ANDREW LEIGH, SHADOW ASSISTANT TREASURER: A pleasure Ross, great to be with you.

GREENWOOD: Alright, so you've also been an economics professor at Australian National University; you've done a whole bunch of things, awarded the Young Economist Award, a prize given every two years by the Economics Society of Australia. You've got skin in the game in regards to this. Many of your colleagues in the Labor Party have indicated that they would prefer more of a closed shop here in Australia, that they prefer Australia to be more protected and that really that we don't really openly trade with the rest of the world. Do you believe that is really the model for Australia for the future?

LEIGH: Ross, that's not the picture I see when I look around the Labor caucus. I hear first speeches that tell great stories of immigrants. I see a leader who was in Korea and Japan this week; a Shadow Treasurer and Shadow Foreign Minister who are releasing a paper on our Asian engagement tomorrow. The globalisers have the upper hand in my party - and have done so for at least the past generation.

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