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Lateline Business -

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(generated from captions) recently to the executive

director of the United Nations'

Office on Drugs and Crime, Antonia Maria Costa. I'm sure

you're aware of his concerns.

He's been calling on NATO to

take the problem much more

seriously, to take out heroin

labs, the trafficking convoys

and the warlords who are behind

all of that. When will that

start to happen, do you

believe? About nine months ago

the NATO secretary general and

the supreme allied commander of

NATO joined by the American

partners set an introduction to

maximise the contribution that

it makes to helping the Afghans

both on the interdiction side,

helping to share intelligence,

provide support to the Afghans

as they go to make cases and

arrests against drug king pins,

but also to support the Afghan

counternarcotic forces when

they go in to make busts, when

they go in to eradicate. But

frankly, it is the job of the

Afghans to lead in this area.

It is NATO's job to support and

it is the nations of the

international community's job

to provide the money for the

Afghan effort. But we do not

see NATO soldiers pulling poppy

out of the grown. We need to

be providing the security so

that the Afghans can do that

job. OK, what about the job of

finding and destroying the

heroin labs which are operating

now and which are producing

funds for the Taliban who are

fighting our own forces? And

what about the interdiction of

the convoys - you talked about

the arrest of the warlords, but

what about isolating and

finding all of those people and

catching them, because we must

know where they are? What this

new order allows us to do is

work more intensively to share

intelligence. ISAF

intelligence with the Afghans

to support them as they plan

these kinds of raids and interdiction operations that

you're talking about. When we

have the means to help them get

where they need to go, provide

outer ring security. So I

think NATO is playing a

stronger role, but the nations

have to play a stronger role in

enabling the Afghans to do the

job. I would say in regard to

Mr Kostya we are also working

hard with the UN urging it to

open more offices in the south

and east of Afghanistan where

we need the most help from the

UN along these lines, as well.

And we are grateful that Ban

Ki-moon is coming to Bucharest

and that's something that we

can talk about at the

summit. That's all we have time

for for now Ambassador Nuland,

but we do thank you very much

for taking the time out of what

is a very busy schedule ahead

of this summit, to come and

talk to us tonight. Thank

you. Thank you Tony, and we

look forward to seeing Prime

Minister Rudd at Bucharest. It

sends a great signal to the

Afghans and to the global

community. Thanks indeed. While

China's attention has been focussed on the violence in

Tibet another of its most fractous neighbours is gearing

up for election. Taiwan's

voters go to the poll this is

weekend to choose a new

president. The situation in

Tibet has given Taiwan's ruling

party the DPP a final chance to

cling to power. With warnings

of what better ties with the

mainland could mean for the

island. North Asia

correspondent Shane McLeod

reports from tie pay. In the highly choreographed campaigns

of Taiwanese politics there are

no points for sublety. At this

rally for the ruling party a

Trojan horse carries a

motherload of toxic Chinese

food and a terror-inducing

Chinese president - a warning

of the perils of closer dies

Democratic Progressive Party is with the mainland. The

putting its faith in Frank

Hsieh, the former mayor of the

southern city of Kaoshiung. He

plans to continue the

provocative policies of the

outgoing president, Chen

Shui-bian. But the DPP's

8-year control of the

presidency looks to be slipping

away. Earlier this year it was soundly defeated in

parliamentary elections. And

in the race for the presidency,

it's this man - Ma Ying Jeou -

who appears to have the voters'

attention. It's just eight

years since the nationalist

party - the Kuomintang - was

swept from office after 50

years of authoritarian rule.

Now it's on the verge of an

unlikely comeback. In a future

Ma administration, Su Chi is

likely to play a senior role in

security policy. Taiwan has

been caught in a self-defeating

paradigm. Confrontation inside

and confrontation outside, so

very little got done in the

past eight years. Policy on

China has dominated the

campaign. The outgoing

president Chen Shui-bian has

provoked anger in Beijing with

his campaign for recognition of Taiwan's de facto independence.

He's staging a referendum to

seek support to rejoin the

United Nations under the name

of Taiwan, giving up a 30-year

campaign to be reinstated as

the Republic of China. That's been condemned by both

Communist China and the United

States. The Kuomintang says

its policy on China is to

reduce confrontation by

focusing on the so-called three

nos - no independence, no

unification and no use of

force. Put ourself in a neutral

gear and do not rock the boat

and try to seek, we call it a

modus vivendi with Beijing. But

events in Tibet this week have

given the ruling party some

hope of stopping what had

seemed inevitable. Mr Hsieh

warning Taiwan it's an example has seized on the violence

of what it could expect under reunionification. TRANSLATION: We are against Chinese oppression and we express

concern, but in the process we

also see once we open the gate

for China, we may end up like

Tibet. Dr Ma, conscious of

being labelled the pro-China

candidate, has gone further,

suggesting he could boycott the

Olympics if the violence

worsens. Minimise the threat,

and that's what we intend to

do, the PRC threat. That's

what we intend to do skillfully

and not like a bull in a china

market. The policies for both

candidates are quite similar,

but in this campaign both seem

to make them very different,

look different, sound

different. Opinion polls can't

be published in the final week

of the campaign. But the last

public surveys suggested Dr Ma

is strongly in the lead, but

that was before the violence in

Tibet and no-one can be certain

of the effect that will have on

Taiwan's voters. The ruling

party supporters don't lack for

enthusiasm, but the party's

going to have to stage a

massive comeback to extend its

8-year grip on the presidency.

That's all from us.

'Lateline Business' coming up

in just a moment. If you'd

like to look back at tonight's interview with Ambassador

Nuland or any of our stories or transcripts don't forget you

can visit our website.

There'll be no program tomorrow

night on the good Friday

holiday. I'll be back on

Monday with our special guest

Christopher Hitchins to talk

about the US elections. Now here's 'Lateline Business' with

Ali Moore. Thanks, Tony.

Tonight - mining merger Lihir

Gold defies the credit crunch

and its own falling share price

and launches a $1 billion bid

for Equigold. It makes us a

diversified low-cost producer,

global gold major. On the

attack - the Bank of England

lashes out at short sellers who

targeted HBOS. A skillful

rumourmaker does not leave

written messages with his name

on it. It would be difficult

to trace it back. And skills

shortage - there's a lack of

financial planners out

there. The most recent research

that we have indicates that

there's probably about a 3,000

person shortage. To the markets

and boom turned to gloom after

falling commodity prices saw a

shortened trading session. The

market lost more than 3% with the Materials Index which

includes the big miners

accounting for two-thirds of

that fall. Falls in BHP

Billiton took 53 points off the

ASX200, with nearly every sector of the index losing

ground. In Japan, the Nikkei

was closed for the spring

holiday. The Hang Seng closed

3.5% London. The FTSE is down

26 points. There may be a

global credit crisis, but not

all companies have put away the

chequebook. The latest to

announce a deal is gold

producer Lihir Gold which has

agreed to pay more than $1

billion for miner Equigold.

The friendly merger will create

a company worth $9 billion with

operations in Papua New Guinea,

Australia and Africa. Desley

Coleman reports. Papua New

Guinea and its surrounding

region is rich in commodities.

Lihir Gold's main operation is

on Lihir Island, 600 kilometres

north of Port Moresby. Today,

the company committed to

diversifying its reserves and

production with a bid for

Perth-based peer Equigold. It

makes us a diversified low-cost producer global gold

major. Equigold has assets in

Australia and the Ivory Coast.

The merger will give Lihir a

total of four goldmines with an

estimated annual output of $1.2

million ounces which it's

confident will underpin future growth. We've got a strong

balance sheet, we're ungeared

and the two companies together

had a combined cash balance of

$224 million as of 31 December,

#20e 07. Which Mr Hood says was

the reason for a pure offer.

They'll be capped at

something around $9 billion

once they get control of

Equigold, assuming they do.

New crest Mining is our biggest

goldminer in Australia capped

at $14 billion and it's the top

two or three. Certainly moves

them into the upper

stratosphere of gold producers

around the world.

Although Lihir says the deal

will add to earnings immediately, analysts believe

today's sharemarket trading was

a reflection of both the lack

of cost savings and added

risks. I think the Ivory Coast

is a place that was certainly

pretty safe some years ago but

there's been recent unrest. So

I think Lihir are trying to

diversify out of Papua New

Guinea for obvious sovereign

risk issues over there and

whether they've achieved a

reducing or reduction of the

risk moving into the Ivory

Coast is yet to be seen.

Certainly that's one of the

risks that does present for

shareholders in this

deal. While Lihir was using its

shares to fund a takeover

Origin Energy was proving that

institutions are still willing

to lend, despite the turmoil of

recent months. Origin

announced its banks have locked

in a $1.5 billion line of

credit, confirming the

confidence CEO Grant King

displayed at the company's recent half-year profit

result. Our investors know that

we have a large capital program

and it's not surprising in the

current environment they had

want to know we are confident

we can fund or get access to

funds to keep those projects

going and we're very confident

we can do that. Origin says it

will use the money to expand

its presence in the electricity

and gas industries. BHP

Billiton fell to its lowest

level in 20 years, while at the

same time China Steel

Association denied blocking

Australian iron ore imports.

Many others in the sector also

felt the heat as the market

lost most of yesterday's gains.

For more detail I spoke to

stockbroker Marcus Padley.

Marcus Padley, a big selloff in

resources today? Yes, huge

selloff. We saw the market

down 162 points on the back of

the futures being down 100 and

I can tell you that two-thirds

of that fall was thanks to five

resources stocks. We saw 93

points off the index thanks to

BHP, Rio, Woodside and

Fortescue and we saw falls

unprecedented falls in BHP and

Rio of 8 and 7%. We saw 6, 7%

in Woodside, 13% off Newcrest

as gold had its biggest fall

ever, fell $56, biggest fall -

prior to that was in 1980, fell

$50. We also saw the oil price

biggest fall since 1991. And

we've also seen since the Fed

meeting, the main problem

overnight is since the Fed

meeting the feeling is that the rate of interest rate cuts in

the US is going to slow. On

the back of that the US dollar

has jumped and the when the US

dollar jumps all the commodity

prices fall over and we have

seen, therefore, a huge drop in

commodities overnight and that has changed and fear factor from financials to resources

and that's what we've seen run

through the market today. This

has also had ramifications for the Australian dollar, hasn't

it? It's down and would you say

it's looking vulnerable? Well,

of course it's vulnerable, but

the US dollar strength could be

a very short-term thing, could

be a day, could be longer, but

you do have to be aware that a

trending Aussie dollar, a lower

trending Aussie dollar, if the

Aussie dollar is falling it is

going to scare institutional

out of equities. If we were

going to see the Aussie dollar

trend down for years you would

see a lot of institutional fund

managers sitting down at

meetings and deciding just to

pull out of Australia and that

would mean, you know, let's cut

a billion off equity holdings

in Australia. The Aussie

dollar is very important to

confidence in the Australian

market. But having said that,

it's very, it is a commodity

currency and if you have a

long-term positive view about

China and India as most of us

do, you probably don't need to

sweat about the Aussie dollar

too much. Today our market was

very much based on what

happened in the US last night.

What do these wild swings mean?

Because it seems there's a

great deal of disagreement

about whether what the Fed has

now done is enough and if it's

not, what have they got left in

terms of fire power? Yes, one

of the interesting things

overnight, in fact, was the

3-month Treasury bill yield

dropped to its lowest in 50

years, dropped 32 basis points

to 0.56 of a percent. And that suggests to you that interest

rates are getting very close to

zero in the US, which is rather

similar to the same state that

Japan got into. If, of course,

interest rates get close to

zero the fire power that the

Fed has got and the power of

the Fed is somewhat diminished, and without interest rates to

cut, you really have to wonder

just what weapons they have.

And they will be left sort of

jaw boning the market, or

talking the market up into a

better state of confidence than actually being able to do anything about it. And the

huge injections of cash which

are coming into the interbank

markets are only really coming

in for short periods and are

very much seen as a sort of

Band-Aid rather than a cure.

And also the Fed really have

little control I think over

whether the US is heading into

a recession, which looks

inevitable at the moment. Yes,

there are concerns that the Fed

is becoming powerless, or

having less power, and that

does throw up, or get rid of a

lot of the long-term enthusiasm

for a quick bounce in the

market. How long till we hit

bottom? Bear markets vary a

lot. In the last 20 years or

so in Australia the All Ords

has seen two extended bear

markets which went for about

14, 15 months, somewhere around

there. So if we went for that

long you would suggest that we

are seeing an unprecedent eed

length of bear market. But

perhaps the better question is

how far we'll fall rather than

how long it will take, although

both are good questions. One

stock that went against the

trend QBE up around 6, 7% when

the market was down 3 and yet

they issued a statement to the

Stock Exchange and said they've

really got nothing to say. Yes,

I assume the perennial big

rurps have come around in QBE,

nothing too specific. They

were up 10.2% at one point, Dow

Jones news wires had a story

there was interest in them. All the financials

outperformed. The sector was

off 0.5% down against a bank

down 3%. We saw JBWere upped their recommendation on the

bank sector. So there is a

move towards financials, a big

story just ices the cake, really. Marcus Padley, many

thanks for talking to us. Happy

Easter, Ali. To the other major movers on our market today:

Britain's financial regulator

has promised to crack down on

market manipulators after the

parent company of the West

Australian-based Bankwest was

targeted by short sellers. In

a scenario we've seen played

out recently on the Australian

stock market, rumours the

Halifax Bank of Scotland or

HBOS was in trouble sent its

shares into a tail spin

yesterday. HBOS is the UK's

biggest mortgage lender and the

Bank of England was forced to

publicly deny any British

financial institution was in

trouble. The BBC's Economics

Editor Evan Davis retraces a

dramatic day. Real or

imagined, the idea of one thing

leading to another and dominos

toppling gives rise to fear in

the city and rumours . But

were people out to make money by betting on bank shares

falling? We have a very recent

example Bear Sterns. In a

period of three maybe four days

the rumour mill started working

so that all the customers of

Bear Sterns began to pull their

money out of the bank and the

result was a fire sale of the

organisation. So rumours do

have a direct effect. Today did see unusual developments.

After the market opened at 8,

shares rose this morning, but

bank shares soon fell sharply.

Before #, HBOS shares were down

17%. At around 11am, the Bank

of England called news

organisations to rubbish

rumours that a bank was seeking

help and the governor had

cancelled an overseas trip. At

lunchtime the financial

services authority launches an

investigation warning:

Bank shares recovered and by

the market close HBOS was down

7%, RBS and Alliance&Leicester

down 3. Usually in the city

you'd bet on markets going up. In recent years it's

commonplace and easy to bet on

prices going down. It's

simple, if you think the price

of second-hand scooters will

fall you borrow one from your

friend, sell it to somebody at

a high price and when the price

has fallen you buy it back,

return it to your mate and

you've made money on the deal.

You can do it with shares.

Short selling is done with the

owner's permission, it's

perfectly normal, but rumour

mongering is not. Can the FSA

catch the culprits? For FSA to

track the source of the rumour

you might call patient zero is

going to be as difficult as

trying to find out where a

virus originated. A skillful rumourmaker does not leave

named messages on an answer

phone. It will be very

difficult to trace it

back. Right now, rumours can

have an enormous effect on bank

share prices. They're

dangerously plausible and denials can be dismissed as

mere words, all because of the

fraud state of sentiment in the

market. It's easy to talk in

abstract of fear stalking the

city, but right now psychology

does seem to be driving things as much as economics. Well,

the attack on HBOS has added to

the jitters around the global

financial industry as investors

continue to digest the rapid

demise of Bear Sterns. Tonight

in London the Bank of England

and the heads of all British

banks are meeting to discuss

the current issues. 'Financial

Times' journalist Hunter's Hill

has been watching proceedings

and joins me now. As we've

just heard it was a pretty

interesting day on your market

yesterday with those rumours

swirling around HBOS, are there

real fears the UK could get

another Northern Rock? I think those fears have calmed

significantly Ali since

yesterday. The moves at the

Bank of England took, their

unprecedented phone call around

our newsroom and other news

roops Across Fleet Street and

even wider was very clear. These rumours were dismissed

quickly, although the share prices moved very, very rapidly

as Evan Davis was explaining

there. I think the sense of

calm we've seen on the market

this morning with HBOS shares

recovering a good 4 or 5% shows

those fears were misplaced.

There's no imminent repeat of

the Northern Rock crisis. The authorities say they are

investigating the source of

these rumours but that is a

virtual impossible task, isn't

it? Absolutely. There are thousands and thousands of

rumours on any given week on

dealing rooms and trading floors around the square mile

alone, let alone casting the

net a little bit wider to other

financial centres. I think one

of the things that the impact

of the rumours this time

demonstrates very clearly is

how market sentiment has

suffered since the onset of the

credit crisis in August last

year. A much firmer rumour

than the kind of talk we were

hearing yesterday before the

bank dismissed it would never

have moved shares to that

extent recently, and it just

shows how frayed the nerves in

dealing rooms and around the financial centres of Europe

have become. There's no

question about that. Now as we

speak, the Bank of England is

meeting with the heads of the

major British banks and they're

trying hard as I understand it,

to convince the Bank of England

to loosen its lending

requirements? Yes. In terms of

the emergency funds the bank

has pledged to continue to make

available to keep liquidity

moving in the financial system

with high interbank lending

rates. The heads of the banks

are very keen the kind of

collateral the Bank of England

will accept for those emergency

loans will be relaxed a little.

They're very picky about

exactly what they will accept

as collateral and the banks are

advocating a little bit of a

more relaxed attitude towards

it. Now more in our region, but

it seems with news today there

is absolutely no-one immune

from this credit crisis. We've

had a major float pulled in

China. Yes, but very

interesting, a very large float

worth about $2.(100) 000-0000

in Evergrand real estate looks

like that won't happen. That

shows how raising capital on

the market is more difficult

because of these same

conditions which have hit the

banking sector. Now even a

huge growth play like a proxy

developer like that exposed to the industrialising Chinese

economy, if even they're

finding it difficult to raise

money on the capital markets I

think it shows we've got a long

road ahead of us before we have

a recovery in that area. And

more evidence of that I guess

with credit Suisse. Their

shares are suffering, they've

had a poor profit

prognosis? Very much so.

They've warned on first quarter

profits for their current

financial year. Although the first two months of the first

quarter went well, in March

they've had more problems

because of these liquidity

seizups that we've seen and

they have confirmed they will

make a loss. Although that was

news, that was a surprise, it

wasn't as big a surprise as it

might have been. Their shares

have only come off 5% in

Switzerland today rather than

the bigger swings around Europe

earlier. Again, a bit of a

sign there that even with

surprisingly bad news like that

people are being a little bit

more sober and a little bit

more reflective as they react

to these news flows at the

moment. The question is, how

long does that sobriety last?

Is it going to be lasting, or will we see another wild swing? Absolutely, I don't

think we'll see the kind of

wild swings that HBOS fell

victim to in the near future,

but again as you say Ali none

of us really know exactly how

long this sobriety will stay in

town. Really, it's another

ugly rumour away from further

volatility. I think we've seen

the biggest swing certainly

yesterday in terms of the UK

banks. How's the FTSE trading

and how are the Dow Futures

looking heading into

Easter? Both a bit brighter

ahead of the 4-day break as

traders square off positions

before heading off for

well-earned rest. The FTSE 100

is currently a little lower but

not as further down as we were

perhaps worried it might fall.

It's currently down about 29

points and the Dow Futures are

looking brighter, and the

people I talked to in the

market are telling me after US

markets open today we could see

a turnaround on the London

market. Which would be happy

news going into the

holiday? Very much so. Hunter's

Hill thanks for joining

us. Thank you. -- Michael

Hunter. Back to oil now and the

price of black gold suffered

its biggest 1-day drop in 17

years overnight on signs demand

in the United States is

weakening. The ANZ says oil

still has further to fall. The

bank is forecasting crude could

return to around US $85 a

barrel in the next six months.

That would provide welcome

relief to local explorers who

say any upside from Highlanders

prices is being swamped by

rising costs. Neal Woolrich

reports. With global

sharemarkets and the US dollar

plunging this year, investors

have been flocking to

commodities as a safe haven.

That's helped push the price of

crude oil well above US $100 a

barrel. Last night came the

first sign that the modern day

oil rush might be ending with

US light crude tumbling by $5

the biggest 1-day fall in

dollar terms since 1991. If you

look at oil prices they were

under $90 a barrel in February,

in the last month we've seen a

sharp spike upwards and not

really on fundamentals but more

as a sort of a hedge against

uncertainty elsewhere. So I

think we could see it move back

the other way just as

quickly. Mark Pervan argues

that the recent oil price surge

has largely gone against the

fundamentals of supply and

demand. Data released in the

US overnight shows that

consumption in February was 3%

lower than last year. ANZ says

crude oil could return to

around US $85 a barrel by the

September quarter. Oil is a

seasonal commodity, more so

than any other commodity and

you tend to find there's swings

in demand each year. We're in

a slow patch in between the US

heating season and the US

driving season. What could ek

senate a slowdown in demand is

when we hit that driving

season, usually very strong, we

could see at the same time a

very slowing growth in the US

which means lower consumption

of gasoline. While the soaring

oil price may be a bonanza for

the industry, explorers say

it's a double-edged sword

pushing up coasts as well as

revenue. An exploration rig

that costs $65,000 a day two

years ago is costing up to

$500,000 a day, that's $500,000

a day and higher. The Australian Petroleum Production

and Exploration Association

says industry outlays soared

above $2.5 billion in 2007.

That's despite drilling

activity falling last year to

less than half the level it was

in the 1980s. If we're going to

increase our production in

Australia we want to make sure

that the investment that those

with the capital to do so are

investing in those many

frontier areas we know that are

out there, to try to increase

the chances of us finding another oil province in this

country. But the future for

Australian oil companies

increasingly lies overseas,

with local firps now incurring

more than 80% of their

exploration expenses offshore.

We all know about the skills shortages in the mining

industry, but it turns out

financial services is in the

same boat. The demand for

accountants and financial

planners is at record highs and

companies have had to get

creative. Andrew Robertson reports. Because everything's

done, I just need to send it to

planning... This woman is a

financial planner of the future, a student at the

recently-established AMP

Academy on Sydney's North

Shore. Australia's biggest

financial planning group has

effectively set up its own

business school to fast-track students into an industry

desperate for people. We think

there are about 16,000

financial planners in

Australia. We think the

potential demand for advice

could be equal to maybe double

or even triple that. AMP is a

company built around its 1700

financial planners, but it

needs many more. It's been

forced to take drastic action

because it can't get enough

planners through the

traditional sources such as

tertiary institutions. The

number of financial planners

that work in our business really determines the volume of

business that AMP writes but

also the rates at which AMP can

grow. Jo-Anne Bloch is head of the Financial Planning Association. She believes a

big contributor to the shortage

of planners is Australia's

ageing population trying to

come to grips with changes to

the laws covering areas such as

superannuation. The most recent

research that we have indicates

that there's probably about a

3,000 person shortage covering

direct face-to-face financial

planning, paraplaning, which is

the supporting role, technical

compliance and all those sorts

of related activities. An

equally severe shortage is

effecting the accounting

profession as it grapples with new legislation affecting

accountants and the evolution

of the role of accountants to

purely numbers to giving advice

on a wide range of areas. And

one of the biggest problems

facing accounting is that it's

competing for staff with

investment banks who are

offering much higher salaries.

According to Graham Myer who's

the xeex of the Institute of

Chartered Accountants, there's

an image problem. People

perceive investment banking to

be good, groovy, sexy, the

opportunity to travel the

world. To go into an

accountancy firm, people

sometimes still see it as brown

cardigan doing tax returns. In

a bid to lift the number of

chartered accountants the

institute is partnering with

Deakin University in Melbourne

to offer a 12-month course for

people with degrees looking for

a career change. That course

will fast-track students into

the institute's own education programs. However, Graham Meyer says the accounting

profession is also battling

another skills shortage in

universities themselves. It's

something that we're talking

with the academics and

universities right at this

moment of how do we encourage

more people to stay in academia? Because there is the

old baby boomer hump happening

in academia, and that has some

real significant ramifications

for the quality of education

that we'll get in

universities. But nowhere is

the shortage of financial

services sector professionals

felt more acutely than in

regional Australia where as

well as all the problems faced

by city firms there's the added

problem of attracting people to

a remote location. For Jan

Pallister who runs an

accounting practice in Wagga

Wagga it's a huge issue. My

first priority is to look after

my current clients. I look

after them well. I think what

they might say occasionally is,

"Is that a little bit slower

the work getting out," or

whatever. What is impacting on

me is how do I grow my

business? How do I get new

clients? You can't get new

clients unless you can offer a

good service. To reduce that

impact Jan Pallister and other

accountants in the Riverina are

working with the local Charles

Sturt University to try to make

accounting more attractive to

young people. You start as a number cruncher but at the end of the day if you've got what

it takes it's not very long

before you have exposure to

clients and it can be very

interesting and very varied

career, because you go out and you actually help people in

other businesses and it can be

very, very interesting and very exciting and very

satisfying. For the foreseeable

future, though, accounting and

financial planning are like

many other sectors of the

economy with no end in sight to

the shortage of workers.

Community concerns about alcohol abuse have seen

Foster's and Lion Nathan drop

some ready to drink products

from their range of brands.

Both companies say they will

stop making alcoholic drinks

which contain energy additives

like caffeine and they plan to

reduce the amount of alcohol in

remaining ready to drink

products. Before we go, a look at what's making news in the

business sections of tomorrow's

papers. A senior Chinese deal

Tinto has been dishonest and official tells the 'Age' Rio

imporp in their row over iron ore shipments and the 'Sydney

Morning Herald' leads on the

same story. That's all for

tonight and this week. The

FTSE is down 43 and the Dow

Futures are up 40. I'm Ali

Easter. 'Lateline Business' Moore, have a safe and happy

will be back on Tuesday night.

Goodnight. Closed Captions by CSI