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ABC Midday Report -

View in ParlView

(generated from captions) Australia's next

CC

Loaded and locked. Zimbabwe's opposition

challenges a ballot recount.

Under the gun Obama stuck in

small town USA. What is

driving diesel, is the price too much to

too much to bear? Putting some

figures on a lifetime of

consumption.

Hello, welcome to the midday

World Business Report, I'm Joe

O'Brien. On the share market

lingering worries about the

credit crunch drives banks and

miners down.

More finance later in the

bulletin.

First to the next resident of

Government House. And as high

profile appointments go, it's

been as warmly received as any

in recent times. Even

Republicans like the idea of

Quentin Bryce as Australia's

next Governor-General, the

Prime Minister announcing the

appointment of the first female

Governor-General. He dismissed

Ms as nonsense a suggestion that

Ms Bryce has been appointed on

gender ground. The Republican

movement says it's an excellent

appointment but wants to be the

last. Although there's a lot of

talk about Quentin Bryce being

appointed to the top job, it's

not the top job, she's the

Queen's representative in

Australia, after this term of the Governor-General's position

we hope to have an

we hope to have an Australian

public with an Australian Head

of State. Ms Bryce will

replace Major-General Michael

September. Jeffery when he steps down in

Zimbabwe's opposition is

adamant the recount of voting

is designed to allow President

Mugabe to rig the result. It

vowed to fight the move in the

courts, calling an indefinite

national strike from tomorrow.

A weekend summit of African

leaders failed to find a way to

end the deadlock.

That they came here at all is a

sign of one thing, that

Zimbabwe's crisis is theirs to,

dragging the entire southern

African region in its downward

spiral. The opposition MDC

came with high hopes that the

13 heads of state would speak

with one voice, telling Mugabe to go. They fell

to go. They fell short of

that, instead telling the

opposition they should respect

the election result when it's

announced and go into a second

round run-off against Mr

Mugabe. The MDC were dismayed.

Ballot boxes were out of sight.

No uncorrupted result from the

first round was impossible.

The ballot papers have been

cooked out of site of

monitors.(yellow╛It's not cooked out of site of

legal. Zanu-PF , they have

stuffed the ballot boxes,

tampered with them for the past

12 days. The 13 heads of state

made few concrete demands Mr Mr

Muga be a except to say the

results should be released as

they put it expeditiously. The Zimbabwe government defended

the delayed result. Little bit

professional. You need to make

sure everyone is happy. That's

why there's delays. So the 13

heads of state assembled here

told the opposition MDC that

they should go if necessary go

into a second round run-off.

The MDC said it will not do

that, to do so would unleash a

wave of violent intimidation.

Senior members of the

opposition are telling Morgan

Tsvangirai, that it's not safe

for him to go back to Zimbabwe,

and he should seek asylum in

neighbouring Botswana. A

strong voter turn out in

Italy's general election,

millions queued at polling

booths on the first of two

days. Silvio Berlusconi was

the frontrunner, he has upbeat

arriving to cast his ballot.

Walter Veltroni, the centre

left is his rival, they are

promising tax cuts and a

tougher approach to law and

order. The major parties warn

about vote rigging and local

Mafia pressure. Barak Obama's

tilt at the White House hit a

snag. Comments made about

small town voters clinging to

guns and religion were seized

upon by Hillary Clinton and it

forced him to the backfoot.

Here in Pennsylvania Hillary

Clinton is seeking to redefine

Barak Obama as the champion of

the politics of bitterness. I

think his comments were elitist

devisive. The Democrat Party

has been unfortunately viewed

by many people over the last

decades as being elitist and

out of touch.

Obama made the comments at a

San Francisco fund-raiser, this

video obtain ed by

political.com was taken by a

donor, and doesn't include the

offending remarks. I didn't say

it as well as I should have.

He has sought to clarify the

remarks but has given the

rivals an opening. He has given

Senator Clinton and McCain the

greatest gift, using his words

against him. This weekend

Clinton practically celebrated

Obama's miss step in a working

house way, in Bronco's

restaurant, she chugged beer,

ate pizza and did a shot of

royal. She reminisced about

learning to hunt with her

dad. People enjoy hunting and shooting. It's an important

part of who they are, not

because they are bitter.

Leading some to suggest that

she may be overplaying her

hand. Can you talk about the

last time when you fired a gun

and went to church. That is not

a relevant question for this

debate. At St Francis of

Assisi church many parishioners

are frustrated but that doesn't

motivate their fate. The

Olympic Spain passes through

Tanzania without incident. It

was taken on a reduced route

through the capital. Hundreds

joined the procession despite

wet conditions in the city.

Large crowds lined the streets

to cheer them on. There was no

signs of the protests marring

the torch run in Europe and

North America. It's at its

next stop Oman. In China

police have charged nine

Buddhist monks over the bombing

of a government building. State television broadcast

pictures of the scene of the

attack happening late last month . The Rudd Government

has been keen to talk up its environmental credentials,

public sentiment seems to be

demanding more, a new report found three-quarters of

Australians believe new electricity generation should

come from clean energy. The

climate institute compiled the

survey, John Connor is the

Chief Executive. This shows

that Australians concern about

climate change remains at high

levels, nine out of 10

Australians are concerned about

action from the government as climate change, they want

well. That's a pretty striking

figure on new electricity

generation, 74 per cent saying

any new power should come from

clean energy. Should Australian governments now

commit to no more coal fired

power stations. Look, it's

clear if we are going to have

real reductions in our overall

pollutions by 2012, which is

getting more than

three-quarters support from

Australians, we need no more

traditional coal or gas-fired

power station, we need new electricity coming from clean

energy, in the bundle of

reforms we are looking at at

national and State levels,

that's a key outcome that

Australians will support, we

need to, more importantly

achieve, if we show leadership

globally. Alternative energy

sources seem to struggle to get

a larger share of the market.

What does this report indicate

about what can be done

there? It shows that Australians not only support

those stronger actions, they

support the position that

Australia should be a leader in

some of those technologies,

solar, wind geothermal and

cleaning up the coal-fired

power stations. Also, that Australians are prepared to pay

more. We did a survey in

November and then almost

three-quarters of Australians

are prepared to pay some $10 a

month extra if it's for clean

energy. We are seeing here

people are prepared to take

action, back that, they want

their governments to lead. Is

the government moving fast

enough on establishing a

carbon's emission trading

scheme. There's a range of

policies that need to be sorted

out. That's a fair timetable.

We need speed, but not undue

haste as we get there. That's

when the real test will be,

much climate change leadership

of the Federal Government and

State Governments, towards the

end of this year, that's when

we need the details to come

through. An interesting point

from this report was that 52

per cent of people scont

discern between the two major

parties on climate change, were

you surprised by

that. Somewhat. We are seeing

the ALP, it has a stronger

figure than the

figure than the Coalition,

around 40 per cent of Australians nominate them as

the better major party.

Collision went backwards, from

15 to 7 per cent on a similar

question asked last year.

Really it says Australians are

sceptical, and the brand of

climate change leadership is up

for grabs, the Coalition can do

a lot to catch up John Connor,

from the Climate Institute,

thank you. American

thank you. American industry

too is turning to green collar

jobs to not only help the environment but the economy as

well. But are all the promises

realistic. In Western

Pennsylvania the skeletons of a

tlifing steel town are

everywhere. Troy Galloway

worked in the mills for 15

years. I started there as a

young man and thought I would

retire from there. How was

retire from there. How was

school? Good. Galloway lost

his job in 2000. Three years

later his wife's manufacturing

job went to Mexico. After

years of struggle, a Lifeline.

Gamesea, a Spanish wind turbine

company opened two plants,

bringing more than 1200. Today

he crafts the blades for wind

tush bins, it's a green collar

tush bins, it's a green collar

job, basically a blue collared

job that's good for the

environment. They offer

competitive wages, benefits and

most importantly staying power.

Those wind turbines are 400

feet high, too costly to ship

to the US. That has the

presidential canned daghts

taking notice. -- candidates

taking notice. Many millions of

jobs were lost in manufacturing.

manufacturing. I'm a little

sceptical that green technology

is going to create that many

jobs to replace that magnitude

of jobs lost. The jobs may not

lift the country's sagging

economy. But in Western Pennsylvania, they are changing

lives and the landscape of the

rust belt forever.

There's more evidence today

that interest rates are biting.

Home loan approvals have fallen

unexpectedly for the first time

in four months. The number of

approvals to build or buy

dropped. One heart breaking

consequence of America's real

estate crisis has fallen on the

Nation's pets, a growing number

of families forced to walk away

from their homes and

animals. Silvia Wise is giving

up her dog Missy, a decision

that was harder than the day

she lost her job, even worse

than the day the bank fore

closed on her home. I tried so

hard. I've had to accept the

reality that, you know, if you

don't have your home, there's

nowhere to put your dog.

Silvia's new rental apartment

doesn't allow dogs, so Missy,

her companion for more than

seven years had to go. In hard

hit Ohio. He was chained to a

doghouse. These guys were

abandoned at the property.

Fore closures are up 50 per

cent over last year, every

shlter is overrun. We are

looking at the second class

victims in the national

economy, people's pets are

suffering as the people in the

homes are. It was often far

worse for the fetes. Man, it

stinks. Animal control officer

Ryan Baker find more of them

locked inside abandoned

homes. Are you in there little

guy. Malnourished flea bitten and

and filthy. About 75 per cent

of the animals come in. They

may look fine, they all need

something, they could have

worms, people don't get them

vaccinated. Shelters are

struggling to cover the cost,

launching programs that provide

temporary care for pets until

their owners can get back on

their feet. That was not ap

option for Silvia Wise. I know

that how I feel that I'll get

past it. Right now, it hurts.

You stay. If you drive a

diesel car, you have probably

been pretty angry over how the

price has shot up over the last

year. It now sits around $1.60

a litre, about a 22 per cent

increase. Petrol has risen by

only 11 cent, and is subject to

discounting. Why the

difference? Andrew McKellar the

Chief Executive of the Federal

chamber of automotive industry

joins us from Canberra. You

think this is suspicious? Good

afternoon, indeed, I think it

is something that does very

much need to be monitored. As

you say, we have seen a

significant increase in diesel

prices over the course of the

past year relative to what it

was come time ago. In terms of its differential to petrol

prices. It's up to around

15-20 cent a litre. Historically that would have

been perhaps 3 or 4 cent. The

oil companies explain this by

saying they set their prices

according to the international

benchmark, is that a reasonable

enough explanation. That

certainly may be part of the

explanation. It was

interesting last year when the

ACCC was undertaking its petrol

price inquiry, there was a lot

of focus on petrol prices. At

the same time, diesel prices

started to move up at that

stage. I think when these

things are monitored, when they

are under scrutiny we can have

a greater degree of certainty

that it does reflect market

conditions, we need to be sure

that that is the case. If you

don't think they are doing it because of the international

benchmark, what do you think is happening? I think it does need

to be monitored. These days

there is much greater

availability of good quality

clean diesel in Australia, and

as a result of that, many more

people are buying diesel

vehicles, in fact, the share of

diesel vehicles in Australia

has gone from 8 or 9 per cent

three or four years oorks it's

more than doubled, up to --,

it's more than doubled up to

around 20 per cent. Are the

oil companies taking these

people for a bit of a

ride. What need to happen is we

need to ensure the market works

competitively, and it reflects the international market

trends, because so many more

people these days are demanding

diesel vehicles and fuel. It

does have much greater fuel

economy, about 35 per cent

advantage in terms of fuel

economy, and lower emission,

that's why people look to buy

those sorts of vehicles.

Another issue is the possible

introduction of the fuel watch

scheme, where service stations

have to preregister prices,

locking them in for 24 hours.

Some people say there's not enough discounting when that

happens, what's your take on

that? There's been mixed

reports on that. A scheme like

that has been operating in WA,

there are proposals to make or

to implement a national model

along those lines. Some people

say that that does reduce the

discounting cycle, whether it

achieves an overall reduction

in prices remains to be seen.

Andrew McKellar, thanks. Good,

thank you. The market for

counterfeit goods around the world

world is worth hundreds of

millions of dollars, and is

continuing to grow. Several

Asian countries launched highly

publy sissed crack down, but

failed to stem the flow of

cheap fakes. Crushing the

counterfits in Thailand is an

industrial process. It is

awash with fake merchandise,

the police are making a show of

stamping out the problem. Literally hammering

Literally hammering home their

message to the Thai media that

fake luxury goods will not be

tolerated any more. At one of

Bangkok's many street markets,

we find fake watches openly on

sale. Orders can be placed.

One trader old us they sell

more than $500 of watches in a

week. The problem is moving up

the chain to actually arresting

the manufacturers, closing down

the factories where it's

produced. Many of the feigning

luxury goods are made outside

of -- fake luxury goods are

made outside of Thailand. This

is where fakes are common

place. At one distributor we

find boxes of watches ready for

shipment. They are made in

China, according to the owner,

and smuggled into Thailand

where there are plenty of

Western tourists. So does each

fake erode the exclusivity of

the real thing.

TRANSLATION: If you are

wearing a genuine Rolex and see

fakes, it looks the same. The

customer would feel frustrated.

Fighting the fakes must seem

like fighting a losing battle.

This is a fraction of the 137

million worth of luxury

counterfeit goods that were

seized in Thailand in one year.

And so despite all the tough

talk, and publicity stunts, the

reality is that for every fake

item destroyed here, there are

millions more churned out in

factories in China. It's going

to take more than a steamroller

to crush this problem. To some of the other stories in

business, bosses will be able

to check their workers emails

without consent under proposed

new laws being considered by

can bra. The government says

the move will allow companies

to monitor their communication

to prevent cyber attacks. And

a South Australian aquaculture

company secures an export deal

with the United States

potentially worth more than

$100 million, Australian Bight

Abalone operating off the

Elliston coast hopes to become

the biggest producer of

shellfish. A check of the

markets. Sue Lannin, shares

plunge on the opening day of

trade. US resags fears hit

again. The market losing 2 per

cent midday on the East Coast

following a similar fall on

Wall Street and a drop in US

consumer sentiment to a 26 year low.

Financials have pulled the

market down, all the big banks

have dropped today.

Commonwealth is down by 2.5 per

cent and National Australia,

and St George off 3 per cent.

Resources not faring well on

fears of a slow down of

recession could cause a drop in

command, BHP down more than 1

per cent, Rio is lower. Sino dropped by a record amount

after cutting the production

fore cast for the full year,

saying operating costs will be

higher. They are 14 per cent

lower. Oil and gas explorer

Ark energy was higher after saying it was in takeover

talks. Virgin Blue has taken a

big hit today. The

big hit today. The budget

airline fell by a record

amount, down more than 20 per

cent after logistic Group Toll

holding dropped plans to sell

its 62 per cent, and Virgin

issued a profit downgrade.

Qantas is lower, Jetstar formed

a partnership with Vietnam's

airlines. We saw a fall from

Tab core.

Tab core. Slumping last week

after the Victorian company

ended their duopoly, they are

lower. Let's have a look at

the ore big movers. No

dramatic gains,

Thanks, Sue. And Wall Street

this week will be foctioning on

a batch of economic figures,

including inflation, housing

starts and factory output.

Some of the big banks are

reporting their earnings, at

the close of trade last week:

Oil is remaining high on

concern about fuel supplies.

Briefly in other news around

the country East Timor's

President is out in about for

the first time since surviving

an assasination attempt in

Dili. Jose Ramos Horta was

feted by members of Darwin's

Timorese community, telling

them he's recovered and is due

to fly home to East Timor

Thursday. Tasmania's East

Coast faces a water crisis due

to drought. Some dams are at

rock bottom, the harshest water

restrictions are in place,

fresh supplies are pumped in.

The head of the World Bank

issue use a warning about

escalating food prices, Robert

Zoellick estimates more than

100 million people could be

left hunky, telling the international community to put

its money where its mouth it.

Skyrocketing food prices see

thousands take to the streets

in countries around the world

as protests become violent

financial leaders meeting in

Washington urge immediate

action. The World Bank

President warns 100 million

people could be pushed further

into poverty, echoing calls by

the IMF for a new deal on

global food policy. Par of the

that new deal meeting the

immediate crisis, and needs of

those facing hung hadder, Hall

nutrition and starvation across

the worldment World wheat

prices have jumped more than

180 per cent in the last three

years and food costs are up 80

per cent over all. It's

allocated an extra $10 million

in aid to Haiti where riots are

increasingly deadly. Further

grand are likely. We are also

responding to a number of other

countries with conditional cash

transfer programs, food for

work, planning for a new season

and we are looking at how to

step up the support as part of

short term and medium term

actions. Mr Joel ig called on

governments to meet the

commitments to provide the UN

World Food Program in there 500

million in emergency aid needed

by 1 May.

It's a different matter for

those of us with plenty to eat.

The figures are staggering when

you add up what is consumed in

the average lifetime. Scared

of carbs, you may be more

scared when you see how much

you'll eat in your lifetime.

That flag is one person's

supply of bread and rolls.

Bread isn't even our favourite

carb. How many potatoes does

the average American eat in a

lifetime. The answer is 9,917

pounds worth. That's more than

4 tonnes. When you physically

see it , it's different than

just hearing a number. That

was the point of the show. In

the case of laying out milk, we

closed an entire street in a

town. There's thousands of

cartons of milk that are laid

out. You don't have all day to

do that. The producers of the

documentary ran into some unexpected challenges, for

example, 4 tonnes of potatoes

was too much for the dump

truck. They had to resort to

human power. Eggs presented a different challenge, there was

no chance for a second

take. Once the egg is broken,

it's over. Of course, a documentary about waste

shouldn't waste

food. Everything in the show

went to a place where it could

be reused or recycled. The

bananas, after we used them, we

brought them to a pig farm.

Healthy foods are not so

healthy for the planet

sometimes when you consider a

lifetime supply of bananas

travel by airplane to reach

you, 12,888 oranges you'll eat

in a lifetime fly a total of 23

million miles, and there's the

stuff we throw away, a garbage

truck of plastic per person.

And how many aloom numb cans

will you open in a lifetime?

Here is your answer. Turning

to other world news - Kenya's

President Mwai Kibaki named a

power sharing cabinet with

opposition Raila Odinga as

Prime Minister. It ends a

deadlock after a contentious

Leck. A soccer match between

Groningen and Ajax Amsterdam

had to be postponed after fans

set fire to the stadium.

Medical staff said it would

have been irresponsible to

continue the game. And six

Masai warriors from Northern

Tanzania ran the London

Marathon to raise money for a

well. They ran in traditional dress complete with shoes made

out of car tyres. South

African Trevor Immel many

breaks through for his first

major title winning the US

Masters at Augusta by three

strokes, despite shooting a 3

over par 75, Immelman wasn't

challenged in the windy

conditions, Tiger Woods was

second. Stuart Appleby withway

fourth round 71 to be the best

of the Australian. Blustery

conditions would assist the

frontrunner, playing with Tiger Woods, Stuart gave every

indication he'd be in the mix.

The eagle putt at the second

challenging the South African

leader. Striving for a fifth

green jacket Woods needed a lot

to go his way, early it looked

unlikely to be his day. A

birdie at the six kept him

interested, five behind.

Aiming to be the only South

African other than others,

prefer Immelman showed poise.

Countrymen between them had six

masters runners-up trophies

since 2000. 28-year-old

since 2000. 28-year-old

Immelman wasn't going to miss

his chance, the world number

one dropping a long putt at the

11th, trouble was around the

corner. Woods found the trees,

Steve splashed into raised

creek. Snedden achieved a two

shot swing at the 12th,

sthufing out his own ever. His

playing partner went the safe

playing partner went the safe

route making his birdy five clear, there was one more

hiccup, tensing up on the 16th

tee to find the water. With a

comfortable cushion, Immel many

savioured the closing holes.

As a five-year-old he was

photographed with Gary Player,

the ageing champion told him he

could win. It was a special

moment. 2007 winner American Zach Johnson did the

Zach Johnson did the honours

for a worthy masters champion.

Let's take a look at the

weather now. The satellite

shows cloud forming over

Queensland near a trough.

Cloud lingering over the

south-east and cloud over the

NSW coast. Cooler southerlies

bringing showers to parts of

NSW, Tasmania and Victoria, a

high is sending dry winds over

the interior and warm easterlies over

easterlies over the west.

Showers for coastal NSW, a cooler change for southern

Queensland, clearing in South

Australia and the interior.

Around the capitals, showers

for Brisbane Melbourne and

Hobart. Mostly sunny for

Sydney, Canberra and Adelaide.

Sunny for Darwin and Perth. A

final check of the midday

markets.

That's the news for now, our

next full Bulletin on ABC1 is

at 7:00. Have a great

afternoon. Closed Captions by CSI