Tag Archives: Xstrata

Barnaby Absolutely Nails It. As Usual

13 Feb

“Well, they’re trying to work out how to pay it back [$260b Federal debt]. So they devised the mining tax; the trouble is, of course, the people who came to help them out with that were the major mining companies, and they devised a mining tax where they don’t actually pay any tax. They said we’d have a mining tax, [BHP’s] Marius Kloppers said ‘You certainly will’, and then Marius Kloppers whipped out a pen and a paper and he gave them one. And it’s working very well for BHP. It’s working very well for Xstrata. And good luck to them, I mean, if a fool invites you to their office and opens the chequebook then you just start writing out your own cheques…

… So they’ve come to this conclusion: they have no money. They have to go finding money. So, first thing they do when they try to look for money is set up a class war. Or, things have to start with a moral prerogative, ‘We must find evil people'”…

They’re going to go and – obviously – just flog the money out of people’s super. Simple as that…

It’s so sneaky.” – Senator Joyce

Alas, I have long neglected to catch up on Senator Joyce’s YouTube channel.

It is the best place for you to enjoy catching up with, and hearing the latest from, one of the few politicians left in this country who might, just might, actually have a genuine devotion to interests other than his own.

Like his constituents, for example.

And the Australian people and nation as a whole.

About a week ago there were a bunch of new videos uploaded to Barnaby’s YouTube feed. The following one is particularly topical, in light of the recent media and political focus on superannuation, and the mining tax. Note in particular from the 1 minute mark, after Barnaby’s delightfully authentic, unpolished and rambling preamble:

Note independent Senator Nick Xenophon’s helpful correction towards the end. And see my recent post Your Super Screwed By The Laboral Party.

I maintain the view sent to Senator Joyce some months back.

The Nationals … and if not the Nationals in toto, then he himself … should split from their ‘senior’ Coalition partners, and go independent.

As a matter of principle, and integrity.

And participate in forming a new government with whomever they wish, according to their own principles and the views of their constituents.

Not those of the Liberal Party’s machine men.

IMO, the Liberals are no better than Labor.

Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

The Laboral Party.

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Swan’s Tax Avoidance Scheme

13 Feb

Quelle surprise!

A stunning revelation emerges.

From the Sydney Morning Herald:

Miners hoard credits to avoid resources tax

Mining companies Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton have built up a combined arsenal of $1.7 billion in tax credits that can be offset against future mining tax liabilities.

Exactly as predicted here on this blog, way back in December 2011 (GilSwan Conned – Mining Tax The Greens’ Pit of Despair)

Note well how the “progressive” (ie, international socialist) SMH follows the ALP (ie, international socialist) party line, by immediately switching the focus of this awful tale of inequity away from international companies, and onto an evil billionaire “Tall Poppy”.

Local Aussie miner, Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest:

And billionaire miner Andrew Forrest confirmed to Fairfax Media that his iron ore company, Fortescue Metals, would not be paying any tax under the Gillard government’s minerals resource rent tax this year.

Mr Forrest, who challenged Treasurer Wayne Swan’s claim that the tax would still raise billions in revenue for the government after being watered down during [exclusive] negotiations [by Gillard and Swan] with [foreign-owned multinational giants] Rio, BHP and Xstrata, appears to have been vindicated after Mr Swan’s admission that the tax has net a paltry $126 million in the six months to December 31.

”The record stands for itself,” Mr Forrest said.

And to make sure you do not miss the underlying propaganda message – that the real “evil” here is your fellow Aussie-made-good entrepreneur – the SMH chooses to headline the article with a photo of Mr Forrest.Not with one of the foreign-owned BHP, RIO, or Xstrata chief executives.

Wayne Swan would be pleased (The Galactic Hypocrisy of Wayne Swan ; Swan’s Anti-Australian Rant A Smokescreen For Treason).

While the focus has been on the dramatic shortfall in mining tax collections compared to original Treasury projections of more than $10 billion over four years, the most recent financial accounts of Rio Tinto and BHP Billiton show the two miners have built up $1.1 billion and $637 million in tax credits respectively.

The credits did not reduce the amount of company income tax they had to pay, but can be carried forward to offset future mining tax liabilities.

Just as predicted here.

Speaking of credit, we should give credit to the SMH for devoting one (1) whole paragraph to a misleading and deceptive recognition of the fact that the vomitous Wayne Swan singled out Aussie miners like Twiggy Forrest for exclusive vilification while belching out his galactically hypocritical smokescreen for treason:

Mr Forrest’s recent MRRT brawl with the government has seen him subjected to criticism from Mr Swan – part of which was his inclusion in the ”badly behaving billionaires” club that included Clive Palmer and Gina Rinehart. Sources have said that Mr Swan included Mr Forrest as a member of the billionaires in an essay in The Monthly – against the urging of his advisers.

Misleading and deceptive?

Yes.

In seeking to further the progressive (internationalist) agenda – in this case, through minimising damage to the PR image of huge multinational oligopolies, while enabling damage to the public image of successful local/national enterprises by invoking “Tall Poppy” syndrome – the SMH propagates the old revolutionary socialist strategy of “class warfare”.  And conveniently neglects to inform readers of the full picture.

You have to find that, at blogs like this.

Indeed, you have to read right down to the last two paragraphs of the SMH article to gain even an inkling of the truth – though of course, it is still not explicitly spelled out:

The major mining companies are loath to talk about the tax that they negotiated with the Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, and Mr Swan. They have kept their heads below the parapet this week as Mr Swan has been in the firing line.

The government has responded to the attack by suggesting various changes to the tax but the prospect of a big overhaul before the election is unlikely. The campaign by BHP, Rio and Xstrata that led to the super profits tax being replaced with the more benign MRRT was so potent that Ms Gillard will not take them on again over the next seven months.

Remember, the article is headlined with a generic “Miners hoard credits…” title.  And a photo of Aussie miner, Twiggy Forrest.

Only the fully alert and informed reader, one who knows that BHP, RIO, and Xstrata are majority foreign-owned multinational giants, is likely to note the above bolded words at the very end.

And possibly, just possibly, have a dawning realisation that something fishy … something against the best interests of Australians … is the real truth behind this story.

UPDATE:

Too late, Independent Andrew Wilkie wakes up and smells the coffee; says Andrew Forrest was right –

Mr Wilkie told Fairfax Media that he had been wrong to believe Treasury predictions of company liabilities under the renegotiated tax instead of the alternative arguments put forward at the time by Mr Forrest.

Mr Forrest had complained that the compromise to allow miners to write off the long-term value of assets from their mining tax liabilities had allowed the big three miners off the hook.

It is beyond argument that the government was wrong, is wrong, and Andrew Forrest is right,” he said.

For readers who have not read my earlier posts on this topic, the key point to understand from the above is this: A major reason why the redesigned mining tax favours the multinationals – unsurprising, since they designed it, in secret, with Gillard and Swan – is that the Big 3 miners have vast existing assets. Their redesigned tax allows them to write off the “market value” of their existing projects, and thus claim credits against any MRRT liabilities.

UPDATE 2:

Via Andrew Bolt’s blog:

Wayne Swan specialises on perhaps this government’s defining characteristic – to meet argument with personal abuse. And there is no fouler example than this – Swan accusing miner Twiggy Forrest in 2011 of being a tax dodger for warning of exactly the flaw that has made Swan’s mining tax a colossal flop:

Wayne Swan has accused mining magnate Andrew ‘’Twiggy’’ Forrest of trying to avoid paying tax, describing as ‘’bunkum’’ new analysis suggesting the world’s biggest miners would get a free ride under Labor’s mining tax..

Mr Forrest said new analysis by accounting firm BDO revealed Treasury forecasts of an $11 billion budget boost from the MRRT were an ‘’absolute fiction’’.

He said tax would allow the world’s biggest miners to wipe out Australia’s smallest because of the huge deductions available for the industry’s biggest players

EXACTLY what I argued back in 2011. A mining tax, designed by the Big 3 foreign-owned multinationals, behind closed doors, with the local miners locked out, in cahoots with the traitorous Gillard and Swan, one that enables the Big 3 to increase their oligopoly over the Australian mining industry, at the expense of far smaller, locally-owned competitors.

And claim tax credits and deductions for doing so.

I Was Right – Mining Tax The Greens’ Pit Of Despair

30 Mar

Back in December, a mining industry executive walked your humble blogger through the details of the GilSwan mining tax. He helped us all to see that Julia and Wayne have done it again. The mining tax is a high farce. One that will produce the opposite result of what the Government – and especially the Greens – have proclaimed.

Far from “spreading the wealth” of the mining boom, we saw that the MRRT will help the Big 3 foreign miners to increase their oligopoly, at the expense of local miners. And, it will smash another yawning chasm in the government’s budget. Making us all poorer (see GilSwan Conned – Mining Tax The Greens’ Pit Of Despair).

Now … 3 months later … after the legislation has passed into law … “expert” analysts have come to a very similar conclusion.

From The Australian (emphasis added):

BHP, Rio tax take forecasts ‘too high’

THE Gillard government’s forecast of $10.6 billion in revenue from the mining tax over the next three years is looking increasingly shaky, after expert modelling by three investment banks found the nation’s biggest miners would pay much less than expected from July 1.

Analysts at Goldman Sachs estimate that the world’s biggest mining company, BHP Billiton, would pay just $443 million under the minerals resource rent tax in the next financial year.

Modelling by UBS suggests rival miner Rio Tinto would pay a minimum of $US472m ($454m) on its dominant Hamersley iron ore unit in Western Australia, which would fall to zero after three years.

Meanwhile, analysts at investment bank Credit Suisse said their modelling had shown that Fortescue Metals Group, the nation’s other big iron ore producer, would have a maximum potential MRRT liability of $US200m in 2014 but this would fall away in later years.

The Gillard government has said previously that the three big miners who helped design the MRRT – BHP, Rio and Xstrata – were expected to account for 90 per cent of the revenue.

It is counting on raising $3.7bn from the MRRT next year but analysts doubt whether this is possible given the massive deductions available to the big miners that recognise the tens of billions of dollars they have spent on their operations over decades.

Revenue is also likely to be affected by falling commodity prices, a higher Australian dollar and rising costs since Treasury released its latest MRRT projections in May last year.

Any shortfall in MRRT revenue poses a significant risk to the government’s budget position because Wayne Swan has committed the $10.6bn over three years to superannuation reforms, company tax cuts, small business instant asset writeoffs and regional infrastructure funding.

*shakes head sorrowfully*

[ Insert perjorative of reader’s choice here ]

Mining Tax Con – Another Huge Hole In The Budget?

3 Dec

Yesterday your humble blogger received information from an experienced mining industry source concerning the Minerals Resource Rent Tax (MRRT).

Information that represents potential dynamite to the Gillard government.

Blasting a huge hole in a budget that is already shot to hell.

This industry source suggests that Gillard and her pack of no-business-experience-disconnected-from-reality incompetents, along with the equally disconnected-from-reality “modellers” in the Treasury department, have been comprehensively conned by the clever accountants and lawyers  of the Big Miners.  This source believes the design of the legislation is fatally flawed; so much so, that a consequence of the last minute change to a key threshold made by Gillard to gain the support of Andrew Wilkie to pass the bill, means that the government now may not receive any revenue from their MRRT at all. Or at the least, it may be quite a number of years before they even begin receiving any.

I have some serious follow-up research to do before bringing readers this story in full.

Stay tuned.

Xstrata: We Will Save Money On Showers – Can We Have Our Lolly Now, Julia?

19 Jul

Still working on that NGER data.

I can assure you, the more research one does on the company names and/or ACN numbers that are the only information listed in the full 775 corporation NGER Register, the more clear it becomes what a total pack of lies the government’s “500 biggest polluting companies” page on their new cleanenergyfuture.gov.au website is.

Especially given that right up until a few days before Carbon Sunday, it was actually supposed to be “1,000 of the biggest polluters”. From the same official NGER Register of only 775 listed corporations, apparently.

However, on the happy side, this tedious research is turning up lots of rather unexpected and curious facts.

For example, did you know that in the May Budget 2011-12, the government has planned to spend $3.9 million over 4 years (2010-11 to 2013-14) on expanding its Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism Energy Efficiency Opportunities program? (emphasis added):

Resources, Energy and Tourism

A Cleaner Future for Power Stations

Expense ($m)
2010‑11 2011‑12 2012‑13 2013‑14 2014‑15
Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism 0.5 1.8 0.8 0.9

The Government will provide $3.9 million over four years from 2010‑11 to expand the Energy Efficiency Opportunities Program to include the electricity generation sector and to allow the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism to develop new emissions and Carbon Capture and Storage‑ready standards for all new coal‑fired power stations.

This measures includes $3.1 million for the expansion of the Energy Efficiency Opportunities Program ($0.5 million in 2010‑11, $1.0 million in 2011‑12, $0.8 million in 2012‑13 and $0.9 million in 2013‑14). The program encourages large energy‑using businesses to improve their energy efficiency by requiring them to identify, evaluate and report publicly on cost effective energy savings opportunities. Funding of $0.8 million in 2011‑12 will be provided to determine the scope and application of best practice standards for power stations.

Sounds impressive, right?

One would expect that since they are expanding it, then it must be good, and there is going to be some really significant Energy Efficiencies flow from this $1 million per annum taxpayer-funded “program”, right?

Perhaps not.

Let the recent history of this “program” be our guide.

Would you like to know just what kind of significant Energy Efficiency Opportunities our “biggest”, most evil “polluters” voluntarily reported last year?

By way of one example only, I give you the most recent report to the RET department’s EEO program, by AZSA Holdings Pty Limited.

That’s the Queensland division of international mining giant Xstrata.

And #19 on the latest NGER Report’s list of “biggest polluters” for 2010.

So, what were their three (3) big … and only“significant” “Energy Efficiency Opportunities that have been identified and evaluated” (but not necessarily implemented) in the year 2010?

2010 Opportunity 1 – Use one pump instead of two on the Macquarie Coal Preparation Plant’s clarified water pumping system:

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2010 Opportunity 2 – Reduce number of dozers at Abbott Point stockpile (by using our brains to avoid double-handling):

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2010 Opportunity 3 – Use cheaper friction winders on our Tahmoor No. 3 shaft:

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Wow!

And the total energy saving opportunity from these 3 “significant” measures that were “identified” and “evaluated”?

6,512 GigaJoules per annum.

When (and if) they actually do it.

Oh … by the way … what was AZSA Holdings’ total energy consumption, as self-monitored and self-reported to the NGER for the year 2010?

Nine million, eight hundred sixty-four thousand, two hundred and eighty-four gigajoules.

9,864,284 GJ.

So these 3 “significant” energy savings opportunities for the year 2010 … equate to 0.066 of one per cent of total energy consumption.

But wait.

Don’t break out the organically-grown sparkling wine just yet, dear reader.

Because AZSA Holdings also did pretty good in the year 2009.

In that year, they identified and evaluated two (2) really “significant” Energy Efficiency Opportunities.

2009 Opportunity 1 – Choose to buy extra dump trucks. For expanded production. And, choose to buy the ones that have the best balance of capital cost/operating cost –

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2009 Opportunity 2 – Put automatic timers on the Teralba bathhouse. The one we built for 300 miners, but now only has 4 staff, because we closed the mine:

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Wow!

That’s a saving of 380 GigaJoules for 2009.

No, not 52,380 GJ.

You can’t count 52,000 GJ of “avoided” energy use per year for extra dump trucks that just happen to be more fuel-efficient than your existing ones as an energy saving, dear reader.

That’s about as logical as saying, “Hey, I’ve decided to buy a new V8 ute, and not a Top Fuel dragster, to drive down to the takeaway for the weekly milk run … look how much petrol I will save!!”

AZSA Holdings reported using 9,205,535 GigaJoules of energy in the 2009 year.

So that light bulb moment of genius in remembering the old disused Teralba bathhouse, represents a saving of … 0.004 of one per cent of total energy consumption in 2009.

(Or 0.56 of one per cent, if you insist on irrationally believing that you can count the purely theoretical saving on the extra dump trucks!)

Brilliant!

We save money doing simple, common sense things that any business person worth their salt would be doing anyway.

Increase our profits.

Then run to Uncle Bob and Auntie Julia to tell them what good little boys and girls we’ve been.

And they give us a lolly for “Energy Efficiency”.

Way to go Australia!

We’re really leading the world, with our planet-saving, taxpayer-funded, wankiferous Energy Efficiency Opportunities program, aren’t we.

One can only wonder how many man-hours of valuable executive time is wasted annually in reporting this sort of “significant” nonsense.

And, how many public servants are employed on $80K p.a. to “administer” this highly efficient and useful, planet-saving “program”.

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