December 2013

MR: Aussies in the dark about risky TPP trade deal

Most Australians aren’t aware of a trade deal which could risk environmental laws, increase the cost of medicines and enable corporations to sue Australian governments, according to a new survey by The Australia Institute. The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is currently under negotiation and establishes a free trade area including Australia, the United States of America,

November 2013

The foreign takeover of GrainCorp – can Joe Hockey demand conditions?

by David Richardson in On Line Opinion

At the moment the Abbott government’s position on foreign investment is being put to the test. GrainCorp is subject to a takeover bid by American company Archer Daniels Midland (ADM).  This bid has received approval from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) and we now await the decision of Treasurer, Joe Hockey.

October 2013

September 2013

Abbott risks health and environment for free trade

The Coalition’s newly announced trade policy leaves the federal government vulnerable to legal action from international companies, according to The Australia Institute.  Hours before voters head to the polls, the opposition has announced it would use investor-state dispute settlement clauses in free trade agreements. The move would give foreign companies the right to take action

July 2013

The remaining agenda for free traders

by David Richardson in On Line Opinion

Australia used to have very high protection rates for its manufacturing industries. Historically tariff quotas on motor vehicles meant that Australian car prices were double the prices for equivalents overseas. Many other manufactured goods were sold at multiples of the prices in overseas markets. Australia like many other countries imposed very high tariffs on most

October 2012

When policy lacks nuance

by Richard Denniss in The Australian Financial Review

The faith of Australian policymakers and business leaders in communist China to keep delivering record growth is touching. Just as they assume the sun will rise tomorrow, so too do they believe those responsible for setting China’s exchange rate, making five-year plans and running their vast state-owned enterprises will keep doing a great job. When

September 2012

July 2012

What we don’t know can hinder us

by Richard Denniss in The Australian Financial Review

The federal government spent $374 billion last year providing services to its citizens, but it’s amazing what the government doesn’t know about those citizens. It is only every five years that we accurately measure the population through the census, and it’s only every six years that we get an accurate indication of what households spend

June 2012

May 2012

End of the price gouging

by Richard Denniss in The Australian Financial Review

The standard excuse for why Australians pay far higher prices than Americans for clothes, consumer goods and cars is to highlight the high transport costs associated with the tyranny of distance. So what is their excuse for more expensive music and software downloads? Dearer data costs due to longer cables? You might assume that because

August 2011

Abbott reads from Mao’s little green book of nonsense

by Richard Denniss in The Punch

Australian politicians have spent more than 20 years thinking up reasons not to tackle climate change, but the latest from Tony Abbott really must take the cake. According to the Opposition Leader, it now seems that until Communist China introduces a market-based mechanism to reduce their emissions, Australia shouldn’t either. That should buy us some

April 2011

March 2011

Let the shopping spree begin

by Richard Denniss in The Canberra Times

Prime Minister Julia Gillard’s decision to give U.S. President Barack Obama an iPod of Australian music speaks volumes about the ongoing evolution of the strong relationship between Australia and the United States. While successive leaders have demonstrated their warm commitment to the international relationship, it is hard to imagine John Howard, or even Kevin Rudd,

January 2011

December 2010

June 2010

October 2009

September 2009

August 2009

July 2009

The Pacific needs action not words from Australia

Australia is at risk of failing its Pacific neighbours on climate change if the Rudd Government doesn’t move beyond rhetoric to concrete action on mitigation, adaptation and, ultimately, migration, according to a new report by The Australia Institute. The report, ‘A fair-weather friend? Australia’s relationship with a climate-changed Pacific’, finds that despite Labor’s strong commitments

November 2007

June 2007

No 51 June 2007

Turbulence ahead by Andrew Macintosh and Christian Downie Universities and fossil fuel capture by Christian Downie Silencing dissent: The Federal Government strikes by James Arvanitakis Grassroots campaign against sexualisation of children by Julie Gale See Paris and Die? by Steve Biddulph Academic economists call for Kyoto ratification by Clive Hamilton Insuring against catastrophic change by

May 2007

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