resource rentals

This government wouldn’t fight for a trillion dollars

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Treasury is asking why the Petroleum Resource Rents Tax collects only a fraction of the revenues it could. Actually, they know exactly what is wrong, but need public consultation in case someone has a bright idea to fix this broken tax without conflict. There are billions of dollars involved. If government wants the money, a […]

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Redirecting Royalties to the Rural Rump – The Nationals go vote-harvesting

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The Western Australian election 11 March will be a furious battle, but don’t bother with the popcorn – the ALP led by Mark McGowan is set to win easily and the fireworks of One Nation will prove a damp squib. Facing certain defeat, the Liberal–National Coalition are playing hard-ball to minimise their losses. The close […]

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It is still land, even underwater.

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The High Court of Australia has affirmed the right of a west Tasmanian council to levy rates on the seabed. It is still land, even underwater. Council saw the land under eight marine farming leases as ‘rateable land’, Tasmania’s Valuer General declined to value them as not ‘Crown lands that are liable to be rated […]

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Peter Costello’s indefensible legacy

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On Friday, Peter Costello used Fairfax to tell us how handsome he is and how splendidly the Future Fund he chairs is performing. He was responding to fellow establishment figure Howard Mitchell’s comparing its returns against the Alaska Permanent Fund. The whole debate was probably a Tory setup. They do odd things like that. Alaska’s […]

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Find me a true prophet!

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The Barnett government in WA is advertising for someone to forecast what its tax and royalty revenues will be. Earlier official predictions, notably on iron ore royalty revenue, have proven wildly inaccurate. The advertisement specifically calls for macro-economic and econometric skills and the ability to, ahem, “develop the econometric skills within the division”. This appointment […]

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Economic rents are massive – but not for the people.

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By Phillip Anderson Cycles, Trends and Forecasts Wednesday, July 8, 2015 London, England Each year the accountancy firm Ernst & Young (E&Y) produces a report that warns of the ten most severe risks that face the mining and metals sector. Of late, resource nationalism has ranked right at the top of the list. In other […]

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WA budget wins Golden Banana Award

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West Australia’s Barnett government has just handed down its budget. It is the ugliest baby I have ever seen. The AFR reports: All key financial measures have been blown apart in the state budget, with net debt (above $30 billion) cash deficits (above $5 billion) and debt to revenue ratios (above 80 per cent) hitting […]

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Economic rents must become part of the public discourse

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An economics professor planned to live without acknowledging land.
He would have succeeded but found that he needed food, clothing and somewhere to stand.

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Australia’s newest taxpayer

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  Linc Energy today announced a major shale oil and gas discovery around Coober Pedy in South Australia.  Unrisked prospective reserves have been separately estimated by two independent consultancies at 103 and 233 billion barrels of oil equivalent. That is an extraordinary find. The low estimate is equivalent to Kuwait’s proven reserves and the high […]

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Welfare offers rich pickings for the wealthy

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“The greatest source of redistribution to the rich occurs through the land market, which is usually the largest tangible market in modern economies.”

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