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Lateline Business -

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(generated from captions) this continuum of larkiness and adventures

and adventures and being a bit went to secondary school, which

was the first time where there

was this subject history that

was being taught, I thought why

do they give marks for that?

Everybody would be interested

in that, wouldn't they? And so in that, wouldn't

I've become very passionate, I

think, about mums and dads

talking to their kids, about

the past, before the kids were

born and even if when the kids

get into their early teens and

are a bit surly about it and

reject their mums and dads

talking that way, those early

years of stories really pay off huge from history, is it as simple as something, is it learning

as that? I don't know. It's a

whole host of the things, isn't

it? I was thinking a it? I was thinking a few days

ago when the President of the

United States was over here asking if he could have a few

myself, more bases, I was thinking to

myself, that in in itself is

history. And yet, 60 years ago, President Johnson was having

exactly the same conversations

with Harold Holt, and actually

you learn these rhythms, these

repetitions, these ironies,

these same duplicities going on

in the same countries, year

after year after year and I

quite think that gives you really think that gives you

quite a liberation from what

you're being told. 'Cause you

can see the depth behind it. Tony Robinson I know you have

done a lot about the 'Worst

Jobs In History'. I bet you

will argue you've got the

best? I think so, yeah. I have

this fantastic job, not only

acting, not only making things like that. And

advertising them on the ABC!

went up in the (Laughs) Sorry, my hands just

went up in the air, I don't

know what happened there. Tony

Robinson, many thanks for talking to 'Lateline'.

The parents of murdered

schoolgirl Milly Dowler have given evidence at the Leveson

Inquiry into media practices

and and ethics in Britain. Sally

and Bob Dowler described the

distress they suffered when the phone when she 'News of the World' newspaper

phone when she went missing in

2002. The Dowlers called for

standards and the British press to lift its

standards and said the hacking of their of their murdered daughter's

phone messages gave them a

false sense of hope she was

still alive. We'd gone up to

the Bird's Eye building to look

at the CTV and we were at the CTV and we were sitting

downstairs in reception and I rang her phone. Yes. And it

clicked through onto her voice

clicked through onto her voice mail. So I heard her

voice. Yes. And I was - it was

just like - she's pick voice mails, she is alive! And

it was then, really. Um ... when we were told about the

hacking that is the first thing hacking that is the

I thought. In the coming

weeks, the families of crime victims celebrities journalists

and lawyers are among the other

witnesses expected to describe and lawyers are among the other

their experiences of media

intrusion. Now time for the

weather.

And that's all from us. If

you want to look back at tonight's interview with Tony Robinson or 'Lateline's stories of Robinson or review any of

transcripts you can visit our

web site. You can also follow

web site. You can also follow

us on Twitter and Facebook. I

will see you again tomorrow.

Goodnight.

Closed Captions by CSI

Good evening. Welcome to

Lateline Business. I'm Ticky

Fullerton. Tonight - no closure

for now, but OneSteel's Whyalla

plant remains under threat. The

real issue is to we believe

that we can have the business

returned to generating cash in

an acceptable time frame? Also

- we're live to China as the

Vice Premier and head of

finance spells out Beijing's

view for the long term. And

spend, spend, spend. We're a

long way from a recovery. It's

critical we remind people how

many jobs come from the retail sector. To the markets. More

than a touch of deja vu with

deadlock on Europe wobbling and talk of it

reduction committee. deadlock on the US deficit

While OneSteel hasn't set a

deadline for closure of its

Whyalla plant, it's made it

clear the clock is well and

truly for a plant that's losing

large amounts of money in a

very tough global steel market. The Australian steel industry

is in the doll drums. The high

dollar and weak global demand

BlueScope Steel already are decimating exports with

closeing a blast furnace at its

Port Kembla site south of

Sydney. OneSteel has its

Whyalla plant in South

Australia under the microscope

after a loss making performance

it's described as disappointing

and unacceptable. The real

issue is to we believe we can

have the business returned to

generating cash in be a

acceptable time frame. He

denied a up in report --

a newspaper report that he has

virtually set the date to close

Whyalla but he does admit the

plant doesn't have long to get

its act together. Talked about demonstrating progress. Over

demonstrating progress. Over

the coming year or so. So what

we need to be seeing is be

confer department we're getting

sufficient progress over the

coming year or so. Mr Plumber

was speaking after OneSteel's

annual general meeting in

Sydney where his Chairman told

shareholders the short-term

outlook for the steel industry

remains challenging, an

indication maybe that the

performance of the Whyalla

steel works may not

meaningfully improve in the

time frame the company has set.

OneSteel's share price has

fallen more than 60% this year. And concern was expressed at

the AGM about debt funded

acquisitions which see the

company carrying $2 billion in

debt there's also $2.5 billion

of goodwill, a premium the

company has paid on the

physical value of acquisitions. It's

acquisitions. It's always

mysterious and it's always a

trouble. Because is it really

worth that? OneSteel insists

its gearing level of 40% is low

but Jeff Plumber concedes the

high level of goodwill is not

ideal. The moment we have a

number of our business segments

that are clearly under

performing and providing

unacceptable results. That's a

concern that's certainly held

by management and the

by management and the board.

It's not just the shareholders

that have that concern. That's

what we're focused on trying to address. I guess you couldn't

give any guarantees that that

goodwill be won't be written

down at some time in the

future? Certainly I learnt in

the GFC you never say never to anything. There was a victory

for the board at the annual

general meeting. Last year

there was a 42% vote against

the remuneration report after

the remuneration report after

extensive consultation with

shareholders, only 4% of votes

were against this year's

report. Retailers are feeling particularly vulnerable at the

moment with the government

agonising over the job losses

in manufacturing due to a

strong currency, the retail

sector says it's being

overlooked. So retail lobby

groups representing Australia's

biggest employers are launching

an awareness campaign aimed at

an awareness campaign aimed at

local consumers and the

politicians. Not everyone is spooked by the rising cost of

living and a world drowning in

debt. If I have a boyfriend I

want to spend all my money on

them. But if I don't, I don't

want to spend my money. But for

many, global worries are

blunting confidence. Definitely

keeps you a little bit quiet

when it comes to spending

money. What's happening in the

stock market is having a big

impact on what I may or may not

have in years to come. So I

guess fairly careful with

making commitments at this

stage. I've been in retail

about 30 years and I can't ever

remember seeing the number of

retailers getting themselves

into either financial

difficulties or having to close

their businesses down. Consumer

caution the on-line threat and government regulation

government regulation have seen

the struggling retail industry

launch an awareness

campaign. We're a long way from

a recovery and it's very, very

critical that we remind people

how many jobs come from the

retail sector. The Internet

and radio campaign will

highlight an industry worth

$120 billion to the economy.

Employing more than 1 in 10

people, much more than

manufacturing and mining put

together. It's also the source

of a quarter of the radio

industry's advertising revenue

so it was no surprise to see

them as part of the strategy. I

think the fact that we see

retail as so important to our

success and we're getting $5

million worth of air time to

the retail sector to help them

out and het them get the

message out to people that

retail is important. The

strategy also aims to lift the industry's profile

industry's profile ahead of the

Productivity Commission report

into retailing. Which will

respond to a range of industry

complaints. We think it's time

to re-examine the whole issue

of on-line shopping both from a

consumer protection and a tax perspective. And a range of

other issues, everything from

trading hours to planning.

These are all matters that must

be addressed. But while

retailers wait for State and

Federal Governments to deliver

what they see as a more level

playing field, they're hoping

the Reserve Bank might step in

with some assistance of their

own. If we don't get the second

interest rate cut that we will

see job hours being reduced in

retail because they just won't

be sustainable. It's a matter

of whether Christmas cheer

trumping global fear. The

retailers may be crying for an interest rate cut the Reserve Bank doesn't look like it will

be playing Santa. At a Sydney

conference, assistant governor

Guy Debelle says the mortgage

rates about where we want them

to be otherwise we'd do

something about mortgage rate

competition. He also commented

on the introduction of covered

bonds where banks use deposits

as collateral to raise funds.

Saying there needs to be a

limit on the number issued. The

introduction of covered bonds

does subordinate unsecured debt holders to

holders to a degree. Any

pricing gain obtained from

issuing covered bonds is likely

to be offset to some extent by

a demand from unsecured debt holders for more compensation

in the future. He sees

unsecured bonds as best suited

to broadening the bank's

investor base rather than a

means of reducing overall

funding costs. To the rest of

what's been happening today on

the local market. Earlier I

spoke to Martin Lakos from

Macquarie Private Wealth. ? It

seems an uninspiring start to

the week? Very much so. It

probably won't improve during

this week. US trading will be

stymied with thanksgiving Day

on Thursday. No doubt the

market is fixated with Europe.

But at this stage the investors

don't know what to do. Trading

volumes today $3.3 billion. Once again

Once again no, conviction on

either buying or selling. And

to give you an idea of where

the markets are trading we were

down 37 points at its worst and

recovered to be down 14 points

through the afternoon trade.

We've had the energy sector up,

materials down, consume

discretionary down. Consumer

staples up. Then mixed from

health care and the utilities as

as well. So very much no

pattern at all at this stage.

I see the Qantas dispute now

heads to arbitration. Some suggestion it could drag out

for some time. What sort of

impact is that likely to have

on the share price? It

hopefully won't drag out. We

have to see how the Fair Work

Australia arbitration pans out.

There no doubt that Qantas have put out

put out two notices today, one

covering the 1600 long haul

pilots. They've tried negotiate. They haven't been

able to finalise. They'll now

let the independent umpire make

a decision there is some

importance in this. Hopefully

the independent umpire will

actually move fairly quickly to

resolve these issues. The share

price down 2 c at $1.64. The

market is not worried about the

unions taking the Fair Work Act to

to the courts? I think if you

look at the notice from Qantas, there's a suggestion that might be the case and that Qantas

will also look to defend itself

in that respect. So yes, at the

end of the day if there is a

drawn-out court case, we will

see this drag on for

shareholders, unfortunately.

The on-line recruitment company

Seek has held its AGM. How

encouraging are its assurances

of earning growth

ahead? They're painting a

pretty positive picture here. The stock was up

The stock was up on the day.

But they're really positioning

themselves for growth. Not only

have they mutt in a 9% price

increase which seems to be

sticking. But there are new

acquisitions in Mexico, the

joint ventures in Asia seem to

be doing very well. They're

certainly looking to continue

to attack both regional

government space, health care

space and the SME space and

they're also adding new

services into the system.

Better functionality on their

Better functionality on their

search engines, as well as

better services. So it was a

pretty upbeat assessment of

what the outlook is going

forward. There's no question

that the employment arena is

still pretty tough going.

Martin Lakos, thank you again for talking to Lateline Business. My pleasure, thank

you, see you again. To the

other major movers on the local

share market:

To Beijing now. And an

unusually frank admission from

the China niece authorities of

the threat of a

the threat of a prolonged

global recession. Stris premier

and head of finance is

predicting the world economy

will slump. I'm joined now from

Beijing by Stephen Joske

director of the China

forecasting services for the

Economist Intelligence Unit.

Welcome to the program. Good

evening. It's pretty strong

evening. It's pretty strong

words from Wang Qishan. Almost

alarmist, you would say. He

says the only thing we can be

certain of is that the world

economic recession will last a

long time. Not what you would

necessarily expect from the

Chinese leadership? It's a very

realistic assessment of what's

going in Europe in particular

where we're seeing regular

bail-out packages almost every

two weeks. And political

responses. But these prices

keep recurring. There seems to

be a lack of political will for

the fiscal reform that could

put their government spending

back on a sustain l path. You

say Europe. It's of course the

other big export market for

China, the United States, we're

expecting this congressional supercommittee to announce later today they've failed to

cut $1.2 trillion off the

Federal Budget over the next

Federal Budget over the next 10

years. How much do you see kind

slowing as a result of all

this? In fact, China's actually

going to be less affected by

the global problems at the

moment than almost any other

major economy. It's not an

export -led economy. It's

driven by domestic investment.

It's got such a large economy

of its own, fuelled by construction, that it will be

able to ride out problems

better. But that will be

significantly affected by an

export downturn in Europe.

Once that is affected, I know a

while ago, you actually were

the senior representative in

China for the Australian

Treasury. To what extent do you

think commodity prices will be

affected by that and Australia

be affected indeed the

Australian share market

potentially be affected? There

will be quite a direct effect

and we should see that quite

soon. But I think the key thing

for commodity prices in the

Australian share market is the domestic Chinese housing cycle.

That's what causes the demand

for steel and iron ore. So the

European situation is causing

some bad sentiment. But the thing that will

thing that will have a major

impact on iron ore prices will

be a downturn in the Chinese

housing market, which is set to

happen quite soon. We heard a

lot of talk about the property

bubble in China. How much of a

downturn now or a correction do

you expect? I'm always a bit

cautious about using the term bubble. The situation in China

bears very little resemblance

to the US property bubble which

of course the US housing market

collapsed in 2008 and it stayed

down, hasn't really recovered

at all N China's case there's

very little borrowing for house

purchase compared to developed

economies. So it's not in the

financial system underpinning

the housing market is fairly

robust. So we're not looking at

anything other than a fairly short downturn

short downturn in China. Last

week, we had the first IMF

report on China. Which noted

that the banks in China could

be severely impacted if a

housing correction occurred at

the same time as other risks

such as capital outflows and

tumbling equity markets. Do you agree with that assessment? It's certainly

true. The Chinese banking system

system is best described as

safe but inefficient. I think

that means when there is a

downturn, they pile up a lot of

bad debts, but the good news is

because the government owns the

banks, you don't get what's

happening in Europe at the

moment. You don't get a credit

strike when they're worried

about risks. The government can

just order them to keep

lending. And in regard to the bad debts the government does

have a lot of fiscal resources it

it can put into bailing out

bank balance sheets. I think

it's a bit different from the

situation in Europe where

they're potentially going to

run out of money to support

banks. In China the government

has a lot of fiscal resources

and further ones that it hasn't

tapped into yet. You appear to

have quite a lot of faith in

the Chinese authorities. Mr

Wang I know talked about some structural problems in the

financial industry, and Beijing

needing to make

needing to make monetary policy

more forward looking targeted

an flexible. What sort of

financial reform do you think

they'll deliver? The key

financial sector reform Wang

Qishan is looking more is

interest rate liberalisation,

which means higher interest

rates and also a narrower

margin between

margin between deposit rates

and lending rates. We're

looking for some fairly big

changes in the whole culture of

the banking sector to follow

from interest rate

liberalisation. I think Wang

Qishan the Central Bank in

China are pushing for it, but

it hasn't got high-level

political approval yet. There's

no clear timetable for it. Do

you think that they will be

impacted also by this potential pressure

pressure on inflation that we

hear about in China? I think

inflation problem in China is

less serious than some

commentators suggest. It's

clearly already peaked. We've

seen I guess about three

inflation peaks in the last 10

years. All driven by food. All

have passed fairly quickly. It

now looks like inflation is

coming down again too.

coming down again too. The

things that is different this

time is previously inflation's

gone down close to zero. Now

we're expecting inflation maybe

3 or 4% on average going

forward. It's a bit higher than

their he used to. And part of

that is because there is much

more sustained wage pressure in

China over the next decade. So

Wang Qishan is right. They do

need better monetary policy to con train that rate pressure. It was quite a

statement that he made. To what

extent do you think this might

be a little bit of kite flying

by the Chinese leadership

trying to gauge reaction on

things like liberalisation of

capital market,, bank

competition, perhaps even the

currency? It's very much an internal political battle

within China. It goes back -

China's had very long-term

plans to reform its fng sector.

If you go back to the global

financial crisis 2007-08 China

was horrified by what happened

to the US financial system.

More or less put their own

timetable for reform on hold.

And they're unsure of the

correct model going forward. So

I think Wang Qishan is trying

to kick-start that reform

process which has been on hold

for a few years now. Stephen Joske thank you

Joske thank you very much for

joining us from Beijing. Thank

you.

Stick with China, because

Australia is not the only country looking at hitting up

big resource companies for

money. China has introduced a

resource tax on big oil and gas

companies. The Chinese

Government says the billions of

dollars raised from the new tax

will go towards fixing

environmental damage and will

help set up sustainable

industries in poor remote regions where resource

companies are often based.

Stephen McDonnell reports.

Remote parts of western China

are a rich source of raw

materials. But those who live

and work there remain quite

poor. These areas are also

heavily polluted now. And the

Chinese Government says big

companies must pay for their

damage. So China has introduced

a national resource tax, which

hits the oil and gas industries

the hardest. The impact on

companies is huge. The tax is

mandatory and they'll have to

pay it even though they're not

happy. The tax for oil and gas

companies is initially set at

between 5 and 10% of bulk

sales. It's said funds will go

to the local governments where

the resources are extracted to

be used for environmental

repair and to establish

sustainable industries. It will

cost the companies billions of

dollars. But even more in the

future. We're considering

gradually raising the resource

tax level. First we established

the mechanism, keep the level

low to minimise its initial

impact, then increase it step

by step. Yet China won't hit

its big oil companies too hard

as they're hugely profitable,

and owned by the government.

Many of China's state-owned resource companies are based

along this street in Beijing.

The size and grandeur of their

buildings are a testimony to

the great wealth that these

companies have amassed. But none of them would be

interviewed for this story. The government

government has told them to pay

the tax and they'll just have

to cop it. Other resource

companies know they're next in

line. With coking coal already

partially hit by this resource

tax. One of the oldest sports

in the world is experiencing a

renaissance with young

professionals. Polo was first

played between the Persians and

Turkamans in 600 BC and arrived

here 136 years

here 136 years ago.

Marginalised as an elitist

sport, polo is now growing in

popularity, partly due to the

cache of that elitism but also

due to corporate Australia's

enthusiasm. Karen Than helped

stomp the divets at a weekend

tournament in Sydney. It's

known as the Sport of Kings but

polo in Australia these days is

fast attracting a wider and

largely office-bound

audience. Corporate bonding

going on today? Definitely some

corporate bonding going on.

It's a great day out 30.

Degrees A bit of polo going on.

It's fantastic. The annual

polo in the city display series

is now in its sixth year and it

appears to have scored a few

goals with corporates in the

mainly cities, including

Sydney. --

in the major cities. We have a high percentage of

high percentage of the bank ing

finance in here. Quite a lot of

premium fashion brands.

Jewellery, premium drinks like

champagne and so forth.

Corporate marquees sold out

earlier this year than ever

before with high profile brands

and companies keen to align

themselves to polo. We are entertaining those

entertaining those VIP

clients.S that across any

corporate marquee. And of

course at the end of the day,

they've got a motive in mind

and deals will be done. Do you

reckon there is much networking

that goes on in these corporate

marquees? It's just rife with

it. Pretty much, 80% of these tents would be filled corporate

people. It's like rugby on

horseback with high speed

galloping, scrums, tackles and

passing. Players require a high

level of skill, fitness and

plenty of adrenaline, while many watching mightn't even

know what a chucker or polo set it. People have been going to

the races and the rugby and the

cricket forever. This is

something, a different

atmosphere in a different field. The diverse crowd includes bankers,

includes bankers, miners,

retailers and fashionistas. For

many it's not just about

watchth the game. If we can do

something that, you know,

they'll have a great day out

with us. It's a bit less

corporate and builds relationships. A bit of networking and a few deals get

done in the marquees out

here? Definitely, yeah. (Laughs)

(Laughs) Polo is one of the

fastest growing spectator sports in the world and

Australia has become one of the

main players of the game. Even

the business of teaching polo

is on the rise, with it fast becoming the sport of choice

for cashed-up professionals and

entrepreneurs. It's going up by

probably 20% every year. I

mean, 20% is a lot, because

polo is quite a small sport in

Australia. For most though

stomping the divets is about as

close as they'll get to

participating in the sport. A

look at what's making business

news in overseas newspapers.

The 'Wall Street Journal' says

barring an unlikely last minute

breakthrough the US deficit reduction supercommittee is

stuck in a part deadlock. --

in a partisan deadlock. Deal-making

Deal-making activity has been

pushed ahead of the first 10

months of last year. And

Britain's day I had telegraph

says Spain's newly elected

Prime Minister has been swept

to power on a record majority

in the hope he'll steer the

kun three through its mounting

debt crisis but looks to unveil

any policies convincing enough

to calm the markets. That's all

for tonight. I'm Ticky Fullerton. Thank you for

Fullerton. Thank you for watching. Goodnight. Closed Captions by CSI

SHEEP BLEAT ENGINE REVS Any news? Oh.

ENGINE REVS

DUCKS GAB No news, then? (SIGHS) Nah. BABY TAPS ON DISH Hello!

Ma's still over there, is she? Eh? Primrose? Oh, yes. She said there's plenty of ham and pickle and some of that trifle left, and you'd help yourself. (SIGHS)

(EXHALES)

Come on, come. BELL DINGS Primrose, Victoria! It's a boy. (BABY WHINES) And he's going to be called... John Marlboro Churchill

Blenheim Charlton. HAPPY MUSIC

Perfect. THEME MUSIC

FLOORBOARD CREAKS Are you all right, Sid? Mm. (CHUCKLES) Yeah. (SIGHS)

I was just...thinking, that's all. About what? (SIGHS) Oh, I don't know, about everything really, I suppose. I was just thinking about... ..how it seemed like yesterday when I held Mariette in my arms.

They grow up so fast.

What is it all about, Ma? What's it all about? (SIGHS) NOSTALGIC MUSIC (CHUCKLES) Let's go to bed, eh. Hm? Yeah. It's been a bit of a special day today, eh?

A bit of a special day. (SNIFFS) Ooh. BIRDS TWEET CHEERFUL MUSIC

Yes! Oh, I think I can make use of this, Mrs Meredith. Oh, yes! In fact, I'm sure I can. Jolly good. Now what else? Oh, yes, of course. It's all in the shed.

Oh. We had it put there after we left the big house in 1952. Or was it 53? No, 52, almost certain. Anyway, the year the king died. Bless him. Yes. That was February 52. Ah, then I was wrong! Because I remember listening to the news here on the wireless, and being incredibly angry

with that Simpson woman. (GROANS) Anyway... Here we are. Oh! It's rather a jumble I'm afraid. It hasn't been touched for years. So I think perhaps the best thing would be for you to sort out what you want and then we could...

You think so? Yes! Yes, all right then.

We'll... Ooh! I was wheeled about in that bassinette. So was my sister. I tipped her out on many occasions. Once, I - Well, I'll leave you to it. Right. (SIGHS)

Ooh! (LAUGHS) Mmm. Ahh. Lovely. Well, time to set about. Now then, what did we say? We said 65 quid, right? So I tell you what I'm going to do, I'm gonna call it 70 quid including this lot, cos there's some lovely jewelleries in there.

Ma will love them, I know she will.

There you go. Does that satisfy you? Oh, absolutely, Mister. Absolutely. That's all right cos now is the time to say.

You've been most fair, most fair. Good. My goodness, I must put this somewhere safe. Hmm. Must be quite a strain looking after a place like this.

You know, a lady on her own. Yes. I miss my husband dreadfully. You've got no-one else, then?

I'm afraid we weren't blessed with children. Aah. Right then, I'll come over for the buggy later in the week. Say what, about Thursday. Thursday suit? I shall make a note of it in my diary. Right. (CHUCKLES) Oh. All right, Thursday then.

I shall look forward to it. Oh, and it was in 1951 that we moved out of the big house. It was the year that charming man Sugar Ray Robinson, who I always feel should have been a tap dancer, stopped Jake LaMotta in the 13th round. Oh, dear, we should hurry up, Sid, my spuds are ready.

Just a half a ticky, and I'll be with ya. (EXHALES) Tada! Oh. Well, of course it's got a bit of fine tuning to do, but...what do you think of it in principle? (CHUCKLES) It's a bit big, isn't it? No, no, no, no. Imposing. Imposing is the word. Ooh.

You'll be bringing him a butler next I sure wonder. Now you've got to admit it adds tone. (SIGHS) I don't know what I'm supposed to do with them things! I've got a very nice flush toilet, thank you very much. What these? These are all the fashion nowadays these...Regency um... You know, what's it. Yeah, people put flowers now in them. What? Oh, yeah. I see what you mean. It'll look very nice at Christmas that one with the high seeds in it.