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ABC Midday Report -

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Live. Government and Opposition

dig in on asylum seekers. There

is one person to blame - Tony

Abbott - for this mindless

negativity, this wrecking

strategy, which has brought

offshore processing to an end.

If they are serious about

offshore pro is heing, and they

should be, they could have it

tomorrow. An Australian pilot one of only

one of only four survivors from

a PNG plane crash. The Queen

warms up for her next

Australian visit. And relief in

a tiny Himalayan kingdom when

the monarch takes a commoner as

a bride. Hello. Hello. Are you

enjoying your stay here? Hello

and welcome to ABC News across and welcome to ABC News across

Australia. I'm Ros Childs. The

local share market is

struggling. Miners are one of

the big drags today:

More finance and Alan Kohler

later in the bulletin. The

blame game has begun. Julia

Gillard and Tony Abbott have

hit the airwaves, each accusing

the other of scuttling offshore

processing. Last night the Government announced asylum

seekers will be processed in

Australia, some in the community. Political reporter

George Roberts in Canberra has

the details. Morning. Asserting

authority. Good morning, John,

and you've got the only Prime

Minister. As the blame game

begins. This is a failure of

responsibility on behalf of

Tony Abbott. The only reason

the Government has no policy is

because of the Prime Minister's

stubbornness. Well, I don't

share that with him. For the

first time in more than 80

years, the Government faced

losing a vote on the floor of

the Lower House even though

there was no chance of it

getting through the Senate, the

Government is still angry its

favoured asylum seeker policy

is stranded. We are at risk of

seeing more boats. More men,

women and children getting on

leaky boats, and if we do see

that, there is one person to

blame - Tony Abbott. She

should have known weeks ago

that the Malaysia people swap

was dead, but she has never had

a Plan B. They haven't come to the real conclusion at the end

of the day that onshore

processing is the best

option. Now, it's the only

option. With the Malaysia deal

dead in the water, the

Government is forced into using

a combination of bridging visas

and limited access to welfare,

to allow asylum seekers to move

into the community. We're not

inclined or we're not intending

to open more dens. What we want

to do is detention centres.

What we want to do is manage

protests the network. With riots,

protests and self-harm, that

has proven difficult in the

past. From now on, the

Government will be blaming the

Opposition for any influx of

asylum seekers, but boats aren't the only challenge

looming on the horizon.

Independent Andrew Wilkie has

threatened to bring gown the

Government if it doesn't make

glam blers nominate how much

they're willing to lose on

poker machines. We think it's

better than the Andrew Wilkie

option. But they're not yet

threatening to vote against

that option. Investigations are

under way into the crash of a

passenger plane in Papua New

Guinea. 28 people are feared

dead. There are four survivors,

including two pilots, one

Australian and one from z New

Zealand. The airline's PNG Dash

8 plane went down just 20km

from its destination. PNG Liam

Fox is about to get on a plane

near the crash site near

Madang. The number still sits

the 32 people. This morning I

have spog tone an eyewitness

who was at the crash site this

morning. He said the morning. He said the wreckage

of the plane is strewn over a

large area and badly burnt -

the wreckage is badly burnt but

also the bodies of the victims

are burnt beyond recognition,

he says. There are 28 victim s,

people who died in the crash.

The four survivors have been

taken to hospital in Madang.

Among those survivors are the

two pilots, an Australian and a

New Zealander, I've also spoke

tone a journalist in Madang who

has seen one of the other

survivors, a man believed to be

a Chinese national in hospital.

Is he recovering from bad burns

to his arms and back. He told

nurses in the hospital he

escaped through a crack in the

fuselage. What's the latest on

the cause of the crash,

Liam? Still early days. Air

safety investigators are hoping

to get to the crash site today.

Police and other authorities

have made it to the crash site.

Investigators are still waiting

to leave Port Moresby, I

understand, and are hoping to

be there later today. Speaking

to the person who was at the

crash site today, he says

locals who saw the plane before

it crashed into the ground,

they said that they saw one of

the engines on fire before it

crashed. Another possible

factor is an incredibly violent

storm - the locals have said a

very bad storm blew up around

the same time that the plane

was due to land in Madang. And

Liam, this is the second fatal

accident involving an air Lines

PNG plane in recent years? -

involving an Airlines PNG plane

in recent years. Yes, in recent years. Yes, in August

2009 an Airlines PNG plane

crashed into the mountain of

Kokoda. 13 people died in that

crash, nine of them

Australians. It is an example

of how potentially dangerous

air travel is in PNG. Another

two crashes involving

helicopters. It is a rugged

flying environment in PNG. flying environment in PNG. The

terrain is very rugged, very

mountainous and the weather can

also change very quickly. Liam,

thank you. The drought-stricken

South Pacific nation of Tuvalu

is fetesing a water crisis that

is likely to continue until at

least January. The Australian

and UN defence forces have set

up emergency desalination

plants on two of the country's

nine eye lands, but nine eye lands, but fresh water

is still severely limit.

Dominique Schwartz flew to

Tuvalu along with the Defence

Force which has been delivering

emergency supplies. Tuvalu is

one of the smallest and

lowest-lying nations in the

world and at the moment one of

the driest. There were three

minutes of rain here this

morning which came as very

welcome relief, the first rain

they've seen here in around

about six months. Still an

emergency situation. The

desalination units which are up

and running on the island are

providing about 40 litres of

water per day per family, but

with 20 people sometimes in a

family, that's only 2 litres of

water for washing, cooking,

drinking, everything, so the

government is keen to stress

that if needs international

assistance. This is still an

emergency situation. Emergency

crews are still cleaning up

after severe thunderstorms

thrashed South east Queensland

late yesterday, killing one

person. One of the worst

affected areas was Parkinson on

Brisbane's southside where

heavy rain and hail battered

homes. It was pretty much like

golf ball sizes. Pretty much

wrecked the roof and two

massive holes. The rain was

horizontal. We've had rain get horizontal. We've had rain get

under the tiles, it was that

square-on. Filled up all the

gutters with ice and hail. At

Logan, south of Brisbane, the

storms claimed the life of a

42-year-old driver after a tree

fell on his car. The weather

bureau is expecting more

intense thunderstorms across

the region this

afternoon. Authorities in

Thailand are locked in a race

against time to prevent deadly

monsoonal floods from swamping

Bangkok. The death toll has

already hit 280. Crops have

been destroyed and millions of

people have suffered damage to

their homes or livelihood s.

Emergency workers are now

trying to shore up the city's

defences as a wall of water

approaches from the North.

South East Asia correspondent

Zoe Daniel reports from the

city's outskirts. This bridge is the is the last dry land in

Ayutthaya. From here on it's

boat-only. This ancient city

has been completely inundated.

Water in some areas is up to

4-5m deep. Residents say that

in the last big floods in 1995

water was about knee-height in

some parts. Now they've had to

swim out of their houses in

water that is before their

heads. Some are still living

there, though, on the second storey.

storey. They're very reluctant to leave their properties

because of the risk of looting.

It's going to be weeks before

this water flows away, and of

course it has to go somewhere,

and it's scopes like this that

have scared the living

daylights out of residents of

Bangkok which is sitting

between this water and the

ocean. People of Bangkok are

buying up key supplies - water,

noodles, torches, batteries,

candles, thinking they will see

something akin to this sort of

inundation. For the moment, the

government is pulling out every

tool it has to try to prevent

that from happening and it's

trying to divert the water

around the north-east of the

city. Eastern Bangkok will see

heavy inundation and many

people there have already seen

major flooding in their homes,

but what the government is

trying to do is to prevent

major flooding in the inner

city and it's saying that the

78m flood wall should be able

to pro prevent that. The main

test will be this weekend,

tonight and tomorrow, as high

tides prevent this water from

escaping into ocean. Jetstar

passengers won't be charged passengers won't be charged for

excess baggage today as part of

an unusual industrial action.

Ground crew at some Jetstar

terminals will waive the usual

excess baggage fee of $15 per

kilogram. It is the budget

carrier's first work ban since

was launched and is taking

place at airports at Sydney,

Melbourne, Brisbane and the

Gold Coast. The union says it's

part of a dispute over pay and conditions. It says conditions. It says the action

will cost Jetstar around

$50,000. Jetstar do like these

fees. They do collect in excess

of $50,000 a day. This was a

way for our members to really

target the company and not the

travelling public who they

assist every day. What's very

important is that by these

sorts of means we manage to

keep our fares low, so we would

hope that this does continue and

and the ASU continue to

negotiate with us in a fair and

reasonable way. The union says

workers will consider further

industrial action. Qantas is

also coming under fire from its

shareholders . Its share price

is at historic lows and

investors haven't been paid a

dividend for two years. Strikes

are adding to the financial

burden with shareholders

worried the stock price is now

low enough to attract potential

buyers. So is another bid for

Qantas from a private equity

group on the cards? Vas Kolesnikoff is from the

Australian Shareholders Association. Well, with the

share price this low, one would

have thought there would be

buyers out there certainly looking at the numbers. We've

seen it in the past and we're

seeing it now with other

companies such as Foster's when

the price is low, and

management just doesn't seem to

be getting the numbers for the shareholders. And the share

price won't of course be helped

by the current industrial

action? Well, the share price

and earnings is where we're

seeing - there are reports that

every time there is a dispute

$20 million is the cost for

Qantas. Wouldn't a takeover of

Qantas be good from a Qantas shareholders' point

shareholders' point of view, in

that it will potentially push

the price up? Well, look, any

takeover offer will push the

price up, always a takeover

premium, but I would would have

thought that even at these

levels and, say, a 30% premium,

the price is still way below

what the original Qantas

shareholders subscribed for a

decade ago. You said you are unhappy with the way unhappy with the way Qantas is

currently being run. What

worries you the most? Well, what worries you the most is certainly the performance of

the company. We see the company

reporting an underlying profits

number which the annual report

says is a strong result, but

the bottom line is that for the

share holers it is a much lower

result and the industrial

disputes are certainly not helping income or theism

imagine or brand of Qantas. And

the problem you have with the

pre-tax profit also links to

the pay packet of Alan Joyce,

the CEO. He is getting a 71%

pay rise effectively. The pie

lots union has called on the

Shareholders Association to

vote against that at the AGM in

a fortnight's time. Will you be

doing so? Well, I just want to

make it clear that the

Australian Shareholders

Association has been monitoring

Qantas for a decade, and we

have been producing a report on

Qantas for a decade, and

historically we have voted

against the remuneration

reports of Qantas because we

see the incentives not being

aligned with shareholder

interests, and shareholders

just aren't getting the

results, so we see the

management certainly taking a

lot more out of it than

shareholders are getting. Vas

Kolesnikoff, thank you. Thank

you. Once again, the direction

of our market has been dictated

by events overseas with the

spotlight this week firmly on

Europe, but for the Australian

dollar, the focus has been

domestic. It's back above

parity, given new life by

improving consumer and business

confidence, as well as falling

jobless numbers, but Alan

Kohler, the host of 'Inside

Business' doesn't think a rate

cut next month is under

threat. Look, the market is

still - the futures market is still predicting a rate cut. In

fact, a couple of them over the

next six months. I think that's

more likely still than not.

Inflation is not really a

problem and what the Reserve

Bank is looking at is not so

much local data but what's

going on around the world.

There would need to be a very

big rise in the Australian

economy to offset the risks and

dangers that are occurring in Europe and mark at the moment,

so I think that basically the

Reserve Bank will probably take

out an insurance policy which

is a rate cut just in case. Are

things looking any less

precarious now in Europe, given

that all 17 Eurozone countries

have ratify this latest bailout package? Yes, things turned around

around on the markets when

Nicolas Sarkozy, the French

President, and the German once

colour Angela Merkel said that

they would recapitalise the

banks. So that's now grinds its

way through. They're still

getting votes on it. As you say

rs the European countries are

voting in favour of it. They've

still haven't announced what

exactly it is they are going to

do, but there is

do, but there is still a lot of

optimism amongst investors and

markets that it will turn out

for the best now in Europe.

It's still pretty short-term.

The problems they have in

Europe and in America and

everywhere else are long-term,

difficult, but every little

step helps, I guess. What about

this latest IMF report that is

warning Australia that it won't weather another global

financial crisis as well as it

did the last one, if it were to

happen. In fact, we would be

pushed into recession? Well,

remember we weathered the last

one through a massive stimulus

package and a big cut in

interest rates and a guarantee

of bank deposits, so the banks

were protected, huge amount of

cash was pumped into the economy by both the Government and the Reserve Bank. Well, the

Government is out of money T

has got a big deficit now - has got a big deficit now - $47.7 billion in the last

financial year. There is no way

they can repeat that dose with fiscal stimulus. The Reserve

Bank can cut rates, that's the

best thing, and the other thing

is that the Australian dollar

can fall which it would do.

Look, I don't know that we

would be in as much trouble as

other countries would be if

there was a global recession,

but we certainly wouldn't

escape it to the extent we did

last time. Finally, Alan,

what's coming up on 'Inside

Business'? We've got an

interview with David Thodey,

the head of Telstra, ahead of

next Tuesday's vote by Telstra shareholders on their deal with

NBN and also an interview with

Ahmed Fahour, the managing director of Australia Post. Alan, thank you Thank

you. To the markets with

Juliette Saly from CommSec. A

bit of a soggy end to the

week? Certainly looking that

way, Ros. Down about 1% on the

main All Ordinaries index at

lunchtime in the east.

Weaker-than-expected Chinese

export figures coming through yesterday. We're waiting on

inflation numbers coming out of

China today and S&P 500

downgrading Spain. Over the

course of the week we should

finish the week higher by

around 1%. Banks took a pounding

pounding overseas. How is the

financial sector here? We're

under pressure as well. The

financial sector down 1%. Not

quite as severe falls here but

Macquarie Group is off about 1%. Worries about the Qantas

share price as we've heard. How

is it trading today? Qantas

down by about 1%. Currently

tading at $1.5 4. tading at $1.5 4. Qantas share

price has full Len 40% this

year, so up by 3.5% this week,

so very volatile. Virgin

Australia up another 5%, so a

good boost. And resources? Base

metals generally softer due to

the weeker-than-expected

Chinese trade figure coming

through. Gold price under pressure. BHP Billiton dragging

on the overall share market,

down around 2.5% at the moment

and that's seen the material sector the

worst-performing. Cochlear is

bucking the trend, it's

higher. It is. Cochlear is very

much a defensive stock. We do

have to remember that Cochlear

has had a massive fall over the

past six weeks or so from the

product recall back in serl

September. The share price has

actually fallen 37% since

September 8th, so a great win

for Cochlear shareholders today

currently at $53.38. JPMorgan reported disappointing

third-quarter earnings:

The first tray of mangoes in

Brisbane has sold for a

whopping $30,000. The 14th

annual mango auction was held

at the Rocklea markets which

was severely damaged during the

January floods. It is the fifth

year mango king lornt lornt

lornt has made the winning bid.

Carlo Lorenti has made the

winning bid. O- sold and

congratulations at $30,000.

Carlo the king again, big round

of applause. Last year he paid

$50,000 for the Northern

Territory Kensington Prides.

The money will be donateded to

two chirp's charities. Casell

Evans was named winner of the

Don Award for this year's most

inspirational sporting moment,

for being the first Australian

to win the Tour de France. His

cycling heroics beat an

impressive field including US

Open winner Samantha Stosur and

agent lettics World champion

Sally Pearson. Evans couldn't

attend last night, but he did

send this message It is a great

honour in the world of sport

and the world of every

sport. His mother accept the

trophy on his behalf. I still

can't find the words to talk

about how incredible it has

been. Cathy Freeman was

elevated to Australian Sport

Legend. Seven others were

inducted into the Hall of Fame,

include Test cricket's most

successful fast bowler Glenn

McGrath. More clashes are

brewing in New York where

protesters on Wall Street say

they will defy efforts to move

them on. There have already

been run-ins with police over

the last few weeks and now the

owner of a park where they've

set up camp wants them evicted.

But the so-called Occupy Wall

Street movement is growing with

protests springing up in 190

towns across America. (Sings)

# It's 2011

# And we're racing down to the bottom

# It's 2011

# And we're racing down to the bottom... #

The protest song may just have

come back into fashion, at

least in New York's Liberty

Plaza where Occupy Wall Street

protesters have been camped out

for a month now. To their for a month now. To their

critics, they're scruffy

people, but to the Left Manuel

Cardoso When you have too much

inequality, few people with

vast fortunes and the rest of

us with less and less,

democracy can't thrive and

maybe can't survive in the long

run. Wall Street itself is

resolutely unoccupied, closed off because of

off because of the protests. We

couldn't find a banker willing

to talk about the fiercely

critical movement, but some

Republicans have accused them

of being dangerous, violent and

crude. Passers-by seem curious,

certainly not hostile. It's

just possible this movement tap

noose a rich vein in the United

States at the moment, of

frustration and discontent, a

feeling that the system is

perhaps broken, something

that's felt all over the United

States. Is this the beginning of

of something like the Tea

Party, the Conservative most

which has revitalised the

republics? Could Occupy do the

same for Obama's Democrats? The

unions are getting involved and

hoping it will radicalise

people. It's hard enough to

mobilise members from the base,

but this puts more fire in them

and makes everybody more

excited about the whole

process. But this isn't the Tea

Party. Many of those here

campaigned for Obama in 2008,

but are disillusioned believing

he does the big banks' bidding.

They want to clean up - they

want him to clean up the whole

system and that's a lot

harder. To other stories around

the world, an explosion thought

to have been caused by a gas

leak has ripped through a res

assistant in downtown Rio de

Janeiro killing at least three

people. The blast hurled debris

more than 100m. And French

prosecutors have dropped an

investigation into former IMF boss Dominique Strauss-Kahn,

saying the case was too old to

investigate. A French writer

Tristane Banon had claimed

Strauss-Kahn tried to rape her

during a 2003 interview for a

book she was writing. Australia

has started its tour of South

Africa with a five-wicket win

in the opening Twenty20 game in

Cape Town. The home team was

restricted to 146 and the

Australians secured the victory

in the last over. 18-year-old

New South Wales speedster

Patrick Cummins made an

impressive international debut,

taking 3/25. COMMENTATOR:

Excellent bowling by Cummins.

We said he had a good change of

pace. That was another slower

ball. Shane Watson was named

Man of the Match after smashing

52 off 39 ball. Australia hit

the winning runs with three

balls to spare and five wickets

in hand. The second of the

final game of the Twenty20

series is on Sunday night in Johannesburg. Australia will

wait until the last minute to

decide if fullback Kurtley

Beale will play in sudden's

rugby union World Cup semifinal

against New Zealand. Coach

Robbie Deans says Adam Robbie Deans says Adam Ashley-Cooper will move into

the role if Beale fails to

recover from a hamstring

strain. Anthony Faingaa will

come off the bench and Rob

Horne would be added to the res

serves. If Beale plays,

Australia's starting XV will be

the same as the quarterfinal

against South Africa. The All

Blacks have three changes -

Aaron Cruden will start at fly-half, Israel Dagg at Aaron Cruden will start at

fullback and Richard Kahui will replace Sonny Bill Williams on

the wing. They know us well.

There is a lot of rivalry, but

I don't think it's any

different from playing anybody

else in a semifinal Rugby World

Cup ( I'm not out there. It's

the player whose are out there

and it is the Wallabies playing

the All Blacks as you've heard

me allude to a lot. It's actual

Loy not all about

Loy not all about me. The Wall.

P- The Himalayan kingdom of

Bhutan has been celebrating a

royal wedding. The hugely

popular king tied the knot in

an elaborate ceremony. Renowned

as the Prince Charming of the Himalayas, he chose as his

queen a commoner, the daughter

of an airline pilot who is 10

years his junior and in a

country reported to be among

the happiest in the world, the

couple took time out to talk to

visitors. Are you enjoying your

stay here It is one of the

most beautiful places in the

world. Thank you, sir. The

Queen and Duke of Edinburgh

have hosted a glittering

reception for prominent

Australians living in London.

The event was held to celebrate

her forthcoming tour Down Under

which begins next week. Emma

Alberici was there. The flag of

the Royal standard was flying,

the Queen was home, to welcome

her 350 guests from Australia,

business people, sports stars,

models and actors. Some of them

have lived in London for more

than 20 years. They filed in to

meet the monarch who greeted

each one, showing no signs of

the flu that kept her away from

an earlier engagement. Some

traditional fare was prepared

by celebrity chef Bill

Granger. A lamington - oh,

look! Who couldn't contain his excitement about getting to

cook in the Queen's kitchen. Extraordinary, the

history that has happened and

the meals that have been

cooked. Next week will see the

Queen travel to Australia for

the 16th time in her 59-year

reign. She told guests in the

palace gallery she was excited

to be hosting CHOGM, the Commonwealth Heads Of

Government Meeting in

Perth. CHOGM is a huge

festival, not just a meeting of

the heads, because there is a

business forum, youth forum and

all of these are attended by a

thousand participants most

enthusiasticly . At 85 years

old and with a husband who

recently turned 90, this is

expected to be the last time

the royal couple make the long

journey Down Under. To the

weather now, and the satellite

shows cloud over the western

Queensland and north-west of

New South Wales with a surface

trough which is spreading

overcast conditions as far as

South Australia. A mostly clear

skies elsewhere. Low pressure

system should produce

thunderstorms from Queensland

and central New South Wales

through the interior to

south-east Australia. Showers

are also possible in the south-west. Around the

capitals:

Let's go back to the Stock Exchange for a final check Exchange for a final check of

the markets. Not a great day:

And that's the news for now.

There is continuous news on ABC

News 24 and also news online.

Our next full bulletin on ABC1

is at 7 o'clock this evening.

I'm Ros Childs. Have a good

afternoon and a great weekend.

See you Monday.

Closed Captions by CSI. (Slashing, rattling) Trouble. What? Incoming. My dynamic dad. (Horn toots) I hope you're here to do some work, Daniel, not stopping other people getting on with theirs. You bet... Hi. Plenty of material, Cully? Oh, loads, Mr Webster. And the press release? Not quite finished. We did put one out last week. Well, the tunnel's the crucial part of the project, and the most interesting.