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16 February
Comments Off on Woodside’s quarterly revenue almost halves

Woodside’s quarterly revenue almost halves

Weak oil prices have hit Woodside Petroleum’s third quarter revenue as the energy giant weighs up a takeover bid for Oil Search.

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The company’s revenue for the three months to September 30 was $US1.086 billion ($A1.49 billion), down 44.6 per cent on the $US1.959 billion ($A2.68 billion) for the prior corresponding period.

“Sales revenue for the quarter was lower reflecting lower realised prices across the portfolio,” Woodside said.

Woodside also declined to address speculation about a potential increased offer for takeover target Oil Search, but said it will “continue to maintain a disciplined approach to business development opportunities”.

The company last month announced an $11.6 billion all-scrip bid for Papua New Guinea-focused Oil Search.

Woodside said sales revenue relative to the previous quarter was 20.9 per cent higher because of higher LNG and condensate sales volumes and higher oil sales volumes but this was partially offset by lower realised oil prices.

Woodside has revised its full-year production target range to 88 to 93mmboe from 86 to 94mmboe due to a strong performances at Pluto and Vincent and delays with its Canadian pipeline gas.

Production volumes increased 0.4 per cent to 25.3 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe), largely due to the Balnaves oil asset coming on line for Woodside in April 2015, while sales volumes decreased 1.6 per cent.

In August Woodside approved the front-end engineering and design (FEED) phase of its Greater Enfield Development in the Canarvon Basin off Northern Western Australia and it is targeting a final investment decision for the project in the second half of 2016.

The company said contracts have been awarded for subsea hardware, shipyard support and geotechnical and geophysical surveys as part of the FEED phase.

The company’s decision to enter the FEED phase came as the oil and gas industry experienced large discounts on the rates for rig and vessels following a slump in the oil price.

Woodside added that it had sold four North West Shelf cargoes to its LNG trading customers in the quarter and marketing activities for its key Browse development continue.

Woodside shares were seven cents, or 0.23 per cent, higher at $30.93 at 1058 AEDT.

16 February
Comments Off on Sydney Symphony Orchestra embarks on China, South Korea tour

Sydney Symphony Orchestra embarks on China, South Korea tour

For many, classical music never gets old.

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This month, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra will showcase their talent to a new audience.

“There is something exciting about going to certain places in China and knowing that you are performing a Beethoven Symphony for the very first time,” said chief conductor David Robertson.

Ninety musicians will soon travel to China and South Korea.

It will be the fourth time since 2009 that the orchestra has played in China. They last played in South Korea in 2011. This visit will be their second there.

“It’s always been so successful that they always say when can you come back next,” added Mr Robertson.

Concert master Sun Yi began his career in China. He said he has seen a difference in the genre since he last lived there.

“So it is quite exciting to see the change,” he added. 

Yin Nan is a journalist with the China Youth Daily.

She said the growing appetite for classical musical in China is finding appeal with a younger crowd.

“Our audience, especially the youth, not only enjoy the ancient famous work, but also the contemporary sophisticated music. Last year when the SSO came to China, their concert tickets sold out,” she said.

The tour will see musical equipment packed into 60 freight boxes, weighing 4.5 tonnes. 

But it is not just about music: cellist Rebecca Proietto says there’s a lot to learn from the countries they will visit.

“It’s great to develop cross cultural exchanges and that sort of thing. I guess music is the universal language,” she said.

Chief conductor David Robertson says there is something powerful about sharing music through a cultural exchange. 

“The soft diplomacy aspect is really important but you can’t necessarily draw a direct line so that when the orchestra goes say to China or to Korea, they kind of bring with them the kind of Australian spirit,” he added.

The tour kicks off in Beijing on October 26.

16 February
Comments Off on Law to give murder victim’s family justice

Law to give murder victim’s family justice

The family of murdered Adelaide school teacher Anthea Bradshaw-Hall has waited 20 years for justice.

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Thanks to new legislation tabled in parliament on Thursday, they may soon get it.

The bill will allow police to investigate and prosecute the murder of an Australian carried out overseas and for which there has been no trial in the country where the crime has been committed.

It extends retrospective prosecutions to before 2002 which was the starting year for the original legislation that followed the Bali bombings.

It means police can investigate the person suspected of murdering Ms Bradshaw-Hall while she was visiting in Brunei two decades ago.

The suspect still lives overseas.

In a rare move, Attorney-General George Brandis and independent senator Nick Xenophon co-drafted the bill, which is expected to clear parliament before Christmas.

It also has the backing of cabinet minister Christopher Pyne, whose electorate of Sturt is home of the Bradshaw-Hall family.

“I would not describe today as a happy day, it’s not a celebratory day,” Mr Pyne told reporters in Canberra on Thursday.

“It’s an important day, an emotional day for the Bradshaws because it is going to allow some closure.”

Senator Xenophon said the bill was a tribute to the love Ms Bradshaw’s family had for her and congratulated them on highlighting an anomaly in the law.

“Her memory has been honoured by this campaign,” he told reporters.

If a person accused of a murder or manslaughter still lived overseas, Australia would need an extradition treaty with that country to return the suspect for prosecution.

The Australian courts could also not impose a penalty higher than the one the crime carried in the country it was committed.

“Obviously Australia doesn’t have the death penalty, so we wouldn’t go to the death penalty but everything below that would be available,” Mr Pyne said.

A person could also not be tried twice, ruling out the possibility of double jeopardy.

Ms Bradshaw’s brother Craig thanked the politicians for taking his constant texts and phone calls over the past few years.

19 August
Comments Off on Mother of Australian Kurdish fighter visits Syria

Mother of Australian Kurdish fighter visits Syria

Photos have emerged online purporting to show the mother of an Australian man killed in Syria meeting with Kurdish fighters in northern Syria.

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Reece Harding, a 23-year-old man from Queensland’s Gold Coast, travelled to the Kurdish-held region of northern Syria to fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State.

He was killed in June this year.

Now, photos on Twitter show a woman identified as his mother, Michelle Harding, shaking the hand of a uniformed fighter in the region while holding a framed photo of Mr Harding.

Photos posted on the Lions of Rojava Facebook page show what appears to be the same woman alongside two other people not dressed in uniform.

They appear to be inspecting rows of uniformed men and women.

A spokesman for the Australian-Kurdish Association said he had been told Michelle Harding planned to travel to Rojava.

Mahmut Kahraman said he had spoken with Ms Harding’s husband and he confirmed she had travelled there with a television news crew from Australia.

A spokesperson for the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade told SBS people travelling to the region would be without ready access to consular assistance.

“We strongly advise people not to travel to Syria and Iraq. It is extremely volatile and dangerous. DFAT’s Travel Advisory for Syria and Iraq is “Do Not Travel”. Australian Government consular assistance is no longer available within Syria and the Government’s ability to provide consular assistance in Iraq is extremely limited,” they said.

“It is an offence for a person to enter, or remain in, al-Raqqa province in Syria and Mosul district in the Ninewa province in Iraq without a legitimate purpose. It is not an offence to travel to other parts of Syria or Iraq, even if it is strongly discouraged.”

19 August
Comments Off on Steve Smith at No.4 ‘ridiculous’: Chappell

Steve Smith at No.4 ‘ridiculous’: Chappell

Ian Chappell says Steve Smith has all but told him he will bat at No.

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4 in the first Test against New Zealand, a move the ex-skipper describes as “ridiculous”.

Chappell also believes Cameron Bancroft will make his Test debut as opener in the Gabba Test starting on November 5, but is not convinced the Western Australian rising star has earned it.

Chappell said he knew where Smith would bat in a new look line-up after the post-Ashes Test retirements of ex-skipper Michael Clarke, Chris Rogers, Shane Watson and Brad Haddin – and he wasn’t happy.

“After the conversation I had with him the other day I suspect he will bat at four which I think will be a mistake,” he told AAP.

“It’s ridiculous. He’s playing well. Why move?

“Why put a lesser player ahead of him?

“I didn’t want lesser players batting ahead of me unless they were openers.”

Smith stroked a masterful 143 batting at No.3 in his last Test – Australia’s innings and 46 run fifth Ashes Test win in August.

He averages 71.90 after seven Tests at first drop.

But his average is 80.00 at No.4 (four Tests).

Smith had conceded after taking over the captaincy from Clarke that he may have to drop down to four to provide balance to the inexperienced batting line-up against New Zealand.

Bancroft, Shaun Marsh and Queensland pair Usman Khawaja and Joe Burns will receive a final audition for two Test vacancies in this weekend’s Cricket Australia XI two-day clash with New Zealand in Canberra.

Chappell said 22-year-old Bancroft appeared to have the inside running to partner opener David Warner, returning from a broken thumb.

But Chappell says the jury is still out despite Bancroft thrashing 335 runs at an average of 55.83 in this month’s domestic one-day tournament.

“Looks like Bancroft will get the first crack at it,” Chappell said.

“I am not convinced yet. I saw him against Mitchell Starc (in a one-day match) the other day and he struggled.

“Mind you everyone is struggling against Starc these days.

“But I need some convincing yet.”

Marsh, Burns and Khawaja are in the mix for Test No.3 spot.

Chappell said no matter the line-up, a New Zealand attack spearheaded by Trent Boult and Tim Southee would fancy their chances of inspiring their first Test series win in Australia in 30 years.

“That batting line-up will keep New Zealand interested because they must feel like they must have a chance against them,” he said.

“But in the end I think it will be like what great Windies fast bowler Andy Roberts used to say: ‘whatever they bowl us out for we will bowl them out for less’.”

19 August
Comments Off on Lowndes admits V8 title a long shot

Lowndes admits V8 title a long shot

V8 Supercars veteran Craig Lowndes admits overhauling championship leader Mark Winterbottom will be a big ask.

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The Holden star heads into this weekend’s Gold Coast 600 trailing Winterbottom by 399 points with just four events to go.

Lowndes brought his Bathurst form to the streets of Surfers Paradise on Friday, finishing third on the practice timesheets.

Nissan’s James Moffat was the fastest driver on the day with a one minute and 10.7995 seconds lap while Holden’s Shane Van Gisbergen (1:10.8727) came in second fastest.

Lowndes clocked a 1:11.0603 to finish third but knows he must battle hard to rein in Winterbottom and keep his title hopes alive.

“We’ll keep putting pressure on but we’ve obviously got to make up 100 points or more per round,” he said.

“That’s a damn hard thing to do at the moment the way that the competition’s really tight.

“It’s going to be tough but the only thing we can do now is keep putting pressure on and seeing what happens. If we can’t win a championship we have to try and keep secure in second which is also tough.”

Moffat’s display came just a day after he announced he would be leaving Nissan at the end of the year after three seasons with the team.

“I should make announcements like that every weekend,” he said.

“Obviously a good day for the team and the car’s felt pretty speedy on both tyres.”

It was a tougher day for Winterbottom, who was the fastest on the slower hard compound tyre in the opening practice run, but could only post the ninth quickest time of the day.

Defending champion Jamie Whincup, coming off the back of a Bathurst nightmare, failed to complete the opening practice session and came a lowly 24th in the day’s final run.

“I clipped the wall this morning which bent the car, it seems since then we have been behind the eight-ball for most of the day,” Whincup said.

“I was out late for my session and we didn’t manage to get a run on our good tyres in the end. It just kept snowballing really.”

The action resumes on Saturday with qualifying in the morning ahead of a 250km race in the afternoon.

19 August
Comments Off on Saints’ Carlisle back to face the music

Saints’ Carlisle back to face the music

Jake Carlisle’s video scandal could cost the star AFL recruit, with reports that St Kilda will review his contract.

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Carlisle returned to Melbourne on Friday morning to face the music after leaked video of him snorting white powder thrust the Saints into damage control.

“I’m a little bit embarrassed and truly sorry for what’s happened,” Carlisle told Channel Seven at Melbourne airport.

“I’m looking forward to getting to the Saints and trying to prove myself at a new club.”

Carlisle cut short his US trip and returned less than 48 hours after video of him sniffing the unidentified powder was made public.

Carlisle’s trade from Essendon to the Saints was finalised on Wednesday, with the damning footage he shot of himself in a Las Vegas hotel room appearing on the Nine Network that night.

The 24-year-old quickly issued a public apology for his actions, but was lambasted by St Kilda chief executive Matt Finnis on Thursday.

He returned to Australia after crisis talks with club officials, including coach Alan Richardson.

“I can’t think of a worse start to a relationship with a new club but he’ll have the chance to win back that trust,” Finnis told Triple M.

“(But) from our point of view the trade’s been done, he’s a St Kilda player, and when he walks through our door we’ll take responsibility for turning him into a better player as well as a better person.”

Carlisle has reportedly already met with club officials but won’t be able to front onfield leaders for a while yet.

The leadership group is on leave until November 23, with skipper Nick Riewoldt not due back until the new year, as the veteran enjoys extra time in the US with his family.

The leadership group discussed the issue via telephone hook-up as the scandal unfolded, with Finnis describing them as “filthy” over the incident that became public after Carlisle uploaded the video to social media app Snapchat.

Finnis expects Carlisle will be subjected to targeted drug testing on his return.

It remains to be seen just what sanctions will be imposed but Finnis agreed Carlisle has a lot of work ahead of him to win back broken trust.

“I’ve been around football long enough to know that people make mistakes and everyone’s bullet-proof until they take a bullet,” he said.

“But this would at the far end, I’d reckon, of the most foolhardy things I’ve seen.

“Jake, to his credit has put his hand up, but he’s got to be accountable for that and that’s what will happen.”

19 August
Comments Off on Apologies but no memorial yet at Geelong

Apologies but no memorial yet at Geelong

Geelong Grammar has yet to decide whether to accept a proposal to erect a memorial to survivors of abuse at the elite private school in Victoria.

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The memorial proposal was made by Robert Llewellyn-Jones, a prominent psychiatrist, who during his time at the school in the 1970s was sexually abused by a school chaplain, who is now dead.

Dr Llewellyn has told the royal commission inquiring into the school’s handing of sex abuse allegations across four decades that he also witnessed bullying and students sexually abusing each other at Geelong.

On Friday, the last day of the extended public inquiry into the co-ed school, the school governing council’s chairman Jeremy Kirkwood said he thought the memorial was an idea worth considering but the idea would need to be “evaluated very carefully” as some survivors had already opposed the idea.

He said it would probably be mid-year next year before a decision would be made and they would be seeking input from the broader school community.

There are 1,500 students at the boarding and day school which was founded in 1855.

The council has overall responsibility for school management and as head of council Mr Kirkwood on Friday apologised “sincerely and unreservedly” for the “physical and mental abuse” some students experienced.

He said the hurt and harm they had suffered was caused by the school’s failure to keep them safe “believe them and support them”.

The commission has heard that five teachers at Geelong Grammar were convicted of sexual abuse offences, some dating back to the 1970s, but the school which liked to handled matters quietly never told police when complaints were made.

Mr Kirkwood was asked on Friday what he knew of a “very generous” payment to teacher Jonathan Harvey who was jailed in 2007 after pleading guilty to abusing student in the 70s.

He said he knew Harvey’s early retirement in 2004 was related to abuse allegations because then principal Nicholas Sampson had rung to say he had been presented with a “fairly difficult situation” with regards to Harvey.

Mr Sampson intended to accelerate Harvey’s retirement and pay him a year’s salary but Mr Kirkwood said the headmaster was “hamstrung” because the complainant did not want his name disclosed and Harvey denied the abuse.

Earlier on Friday, the school’s commercial director Andrew Moore who wrote the $64,000 cheque for Harvey said he never knew why he was leaving the school.

Mr Moore said he understood the payment was an acknowledgement of long service.

The hearing has concluded.

19 July
Comments Off on Deadline draws near for unions commission

Deadline draws near for unions commission

The trade union royal commission has announced it will hold its final public hearings in November, marking the completion of a controversial inquiry that has run for almost two years.

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On Friday the commission concluded hearings into the Australian Workers’ Union, which was headed at national level by federal Labor leader Bill Shorten before he entered parliament in 2007.

The Labor leader said the commission had been “a waste of time”.

“It’s been a political smear,” he said on Friday, echoing frequent criticisms from the ALP and the union movement.

Mr Shorten was also the AWU’s Victorian branch secretary until 2006, when he was succeeded by Cesar Melhem, who held the post until entering the Victorian parliament in 2013.

Both men faced the commission – Mr Shorten in July and Mr Melhem making his second appearance before the commission this week.

On Friday, Anthony Sirsen, an executive of engineering corporation Downer EDI, was asked about a $25,000 invoice he authorised to be paid to the AWU in 2012, when the union was holding a picket that disrupted a project Downer EDI was working on in Victoria.

The AWU was picketing an Essendon heliport over the dismissal of two workers – union employee representatives who were made redundant two weeks before the end of a job on a gas platform in Bass Strait.

Mr Sirsen said the payment was for the training of eight workers and denied evidence to the commission by one of the sacked workers that the money was paid to make the picket “go away”.

Mr Melhem told the commission this week that he was aware of the dispute at the time but had no involvement with the invoice being listed for “health and safety training”.

He said he believed the payment was a settlement for the two dismissed workers and did not pay attention to the description.

“I should have paid more attention but I don’t read every single email,” Mr Melhem told the commission.

Commissioner Dyson Heydon, the former High Court judge appointed to the commission by former Prime Minister Tony Abbott, is due to hand up his final report to the government by December 31.

Since starting in May, 2014, with an investigation targeting an AWU slush fund operated by former PM Julia Gillard’s ex-boyfriend, the commission has held more than 170 public and private hearings around the country and called almost 500 witnesses.

Its original one-year time frame was extended to two years in late 2014.

The royal commission will hold hearings in Sydney on October 29 and 30 focusing on the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union.

Its final public hearings, on the NSW branch of the National Union of Workers (NUW), will run from November 4 to November 6.

Previous hearings involving the National Union of Workers focused on its relationship with a fundraising organisation, IR21, that raised money for union elections and the Labor Party via functions featuring speakers including Ms Gillard.

19 July
Comments Off on No action taken on Gordon’s NSW DV claims

No action taken on Gordon’s NSW DV claims

NSW police are not taking any action against scandal-prone Queensland MP Billy Gordon over claims he abused his former partner while living in the state.

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Kristy Peckham told Channel Nine in April the Cook MP – her former partner – was physically and emotionally abusive and locked her in a house in Dubbo.

NSW Police says inquiries have been made.

“However, due to a lack of evidence, no further action has been taken,” a representative told AAP.

Ms Peckham said she would try to have Mr Gordon prosecuted in NSW after police north of the border cleared him of domestic violence allegations.

But the latest comments may come as little relief to the MP, who has lost all but one of his staff from his main office this week.

Queensland Parliament Clerk Neil Laurie said there were no allegations the two employees had resigned because of misconduct on Mr Gordon’s behalf.

Their positions have been filled on an interim basis, while Mr Gordon’s second office – in the Torres Strait – has not been staffed since he was elected early this year.

The MP has not talked to the media in person since numerous women began going public with claims he sent them explicit photos through texts and social media.

Police are looking into the claims, and one woman has been charged with extorting Mr Gordon over at least one image she allegedly received.

Mr Gordon was forced to quit the Labor Party in February after failing to disclose his past criminal convictions.

He was also in hot water for unpaid child support.

Another former partner has also made domestic violence claims to Channel Nine after Ms Peckham spoke to the network.

19 July
Comments Off on ANZ last bank to raise variable interest rate

ANZ last bank to raise variable interest rate

ANZ has joined its rivals in hiking standard variable interest rates, lifting rates for home owners by 0.

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18 percentage points to 5.56 per cent.

Earlier on Friday NAB announced a 0.17 percentage point raise to 5.6 percent to take effect from November 12.

The move comes on the heels of the Commonwealth Bank’s announcement on Thursday to push up its rate 0.15 percent to 5.6 per cent, and Westpac’s 0.2 per cent lift to 5.68 percent last week.

The lifts put pressure on the last remaining major lender ANZ, to take similar action.

A majority of the big four have raised their rates now since Westpac triggered this latest spate of hikes on October 14.

NAB followed the other banks in blaming the increase on tougher market conditions and regulations.

All of the banks have undertaken billion dollar capital raisings in the past few months to build capital to absorb possible losses and to secure their business.

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NAB raised $5.5 billion in May.

“There are a range of factors that come into consideration in interest rate decisions. The home loan market is dynamic, with multiple changes being seen across the industry,” NAB group executive for personal banking Gavin Slater said.

“Today’s decision has not been easy, but we believe this is right decision for the long term.”

NAB’s move fuels further speculation of a Melbourne Cup Day rate cut by the Reserve Bank next month.

Like the other banks, NAB has cited market conditions and requirements to increase capital for the increase, which will come into effect on November 12.

The changes mean owner occupiers with a $300,000 loan will fork out an extra $27 a month in repayments.

CBA’s variable rates on home loans for investors will also jump 0.15 percentage points to 5.87 per cent, its second rate increase for investors in three months.

The hikes are being made to help cover the cost of new requirements for the banks to hold more capital to absorb possible losses and make their businesses more secure.

“We recently raised $5.1 billion to strengthen our capital position in line with new regulatory requirements implemented in response to the Financial System Inquiry,” CBA group executive for retail banking services Matt Comyn said.

“We have now reviewed our home loan pricing in light of these changes.”

Opposition Leader Bill Shorten described the rate increases as “nothing but a rip-off”.

“Westpac and Commonwealth Bank customers have every right to be angry at their banks,” Mr Shorten said in a statement.

The ANZ bank is yet to announce whether it will move on rates.

19 July
Comments Off on Bishop visits haze-blanketed Indonesia

Bishop visits haze-blanketed Indonesia

Indonesia has reached out to Australia as it confronts an escalating emergency in one of its worst-ever seasons for forest fires.

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Foreign Minister Julie Bishop met her Indonesian counterpart Retno Marsudi on the sidelines of the Indian Ocean Rim Association (IORA) council of ministers meeting in Padang, Sumatra, an island at the heart of the haze crisis.

It was Ms Bishop’s first visit to Indonesia this year, which has been dominated by diplomatic strife over the execution of Myuran Sukumaran and Andrew Chan, but the pair had met elsewhere four times in the past three months.

Australia has already responded to a request for aerial firefighting support, sending a water bombing aircraft to operate in south Sumatra for five days last week.

Ms Retno said that effort was appreciated, and she looked forward to further work with Australia in the near future.

It’s hoped Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull can visit Indonesia this year, and Ms Retno will visit Australia on December 21 for “two plus two” talks involving the defence and foreign ministers.

“The bilateral relationship overall is in very good shape and both us are very committed to strengthening our bilateral relationship in the future,” she told reporters.

Ms Bishop, who saw Indonesia’s haze first hand when she took her morning run in a grey Padang park, earlier told reporters that any further requests for firefighting help would have to be weighed against Australia’s needs as the bushfire season starts.

Mr Turnbull would meet President Jokowi, as he is known, at international summits next month.

“They had a very constructive and positive conversation upon prime minister Turnbull coming to office and we’re looking forward to establishing a rapport between our two leaders as we continue to work together as neighbours, as friends, as partners,” Ms Bishop said.

Jokowi stopped short of ordering evacuations on Friday, instead mobilising authorities in affected areas to reserve their buildings for residents who must flee their homes due to smoke.

Neighbouring countries are also suffering from severe air pollution and cancelled flights due to the haze, but Jakarta rejected offers of outside help for weeks.

The fires are an annual event caused by slash-and-burn farming, but the dry el Nino conditions and winds have prolonged the situation this year.

The loss is expected to exceed $14 billion in damage and disruption to tourism in Indonesia alone.

At least 12 Indonesians have died from respiratory illnesses, the youngest reported a 27-day-old baby.

Closing Australia’s two-year term as IORA chair and handing over to Indonesia, Ms Bishop announced $3 million to support innovation in aquaculture in Indian Ocean states, and a high-level event for senior women business leaders in Australia in 2016.

In its term as chair, Australia had sought to make the group stronger and more practical, she said.

19 July
Comments Off on Refugees’ 8-year wait for PNG citizenship

Refugees’ 8-year wait for PNG citizenship

Refugees on Manus Island will be resettled on Papua New Guinea’s mainland but won’t be allowed to become citizens or own land for eight years.

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The Australian government welcomed a decision by PNG on Friday to begin resettling refugees processed from the island’s immigration detention centre.

“The PNG government has shown … its commitment to permit those found to be refugees to get on with their lives and have a fresh start in this dynamic nation with a growing economy,” Immigration Minister Peter Dutton said on Friday.

The refugees have been processed under a regional resettlement arrangement negotiated by the Rudd government in mid-2013 and aimed at stemming the flow of asylum-seeker boat arrivals.

Opposition immigration spokesman Richard Marles said the arrangement had the biggest single impact on stemming the flow and preventing deaths at sea.

But the fact that not a single refugee had been resettled in PNG was evidence the coalition had mismanaged an important bilateral relationship and failed to actively engage with Port Moresby, he said.

According to a leaked transcript of a video message recorded by PNG deputy chief migration officer Esther Gaegaming, obtained by AAP, none of the refugees will be resettled on Manus Island.

Instead they will be relocated eventually to the mainland.

Refugees will undergo a course called Wei Bilong to build their English and Tok Pisin language skills and understanding of PNG society and culture.

They will be offered opportunities to do voluntary work to “contribute meaningfully to their local community”.

A recruitment agency has been engaged to help refugees find work and they will also be given assistance to relocate.

Initially, they will be housed in guesthouse accommodation and assisted to find long-term housing.

“Accommodation can be expensive in some parts of PNG so initially you may need to share with other refugees or with Papua New Guineans,” Ms Gaegaming says.

Refugees will receive some basic food and household items and will get temporary assistance to cover medical expenses in the first six months.

After refugees find a job they will be allowed to bring family members to join them in PNG.

They won’t be eligible for citizenship for eight years. After that they will be able to vote, own land or run for public office.

The message urged refugees refusing to move out of the detention centre to the transit accommodation centre on Manus Island because of safety fears to “start your journey towards your new life”.

“If you choose not to relocate, you are choosing to deny yourself freedom,” it said.

It reiterates Australian government policy that none of the refugees will ever be resettled in Australia.

Mr Dutton was asked about the government’s provisions for gay asylum seekers resettled in PNG at a media conference in Brisbane later on Friday.

He said the Australian government was “sensitive to situations” where discrimination may occur and was able to provide support to people affected by such treatment.

However, he didn’t elaborate as how it related to refugees in same-sex relationships once they were relocated to PNG.

“But in relation to Manus … the management of the Manus regional processing centre is an issue for the PNG government,” he said.

Foreign Minister Rimbink Pato said his country had a proud tradition of helping people in need.

But there were concerns about refugees taking jobs off locals.

“Settlement of refugees is not easy and we have to ensure refugees are not competing for employment and income earning opportunities with our citizens,” he said in a statement.

PNG’s refugee policy would also cover people from Indonesia’s Papua provinces who had fled the trouble spot years ago.

The PNG government would start assessing more than 2000 applications from West Papuans seeking PNG naturalisation from next month.