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No Hardie pay rise before compensation deal.

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Media Release

Penny Wong Labor Senator for South Australia Shadow Minister for Employment and Workforce Participation, Corporate Governance and Responsibility

Tuesday 19 September 2006


Seeking a fee increase for James Hardie directors before the compensation deal is finalised is a slap in the face for asbestos victims, Shadow Minister for Corporate Governance and Responsibility, Senator Penny Wong said today.

James Hardie directors will today propose to Australian shareholders that their fee pool be increased before the asbestos victim’s compensation deal is finalised.

“The current directors indicated they would not increase their fees until the deal was done and they should honour that,” Senator Wong said.

“Seeking a fee increase for current directors now does nothing to rebuild faith with asbestos victims or the community,” Senator Wong said.

If fee levels need to be higher for recruiting new directors, then the proposed arrangements should reflect that - either pay the increase to new directors only, or make the increase contingent upon the compensation deal being finalised.

By accepting fee increases now, some pressure is taken off the directors to finalise the deal as soon as possible.

“James Hardie directors and Peter Costello must ensure the compensation arrangements for asbestos victims are finalised immediately,” Senator Wong said.

For further information: Nathan Fabian 0412 128 486