Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Wed 22 Feb 2012



The Northern Territory news Wed 22 Feb 2012

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NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




This publication contains may contain links to external sites. These external sites may no longer be active.




Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

Publisher name

Nationwide News Pty. Limited

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Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

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Nationwide News Pty. Limited



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www.ntnews.com.au Wednesday, February 22, 2012. NT NEWS. 23 P U B : NTNE-WS-DA-TE:22-FGE:23 CO-LO-R: C-M Y-K SALES & HIRE Salesyard at: 20 Casey Rd, East Arm 8947 3490 Sale s Hire Serv ice ( 24/7 ) www.forkliftsolutions.com.au E R 1 7 0 1 0 4 /1 1 1 0 fh 0 4 /1 1 1 0 1 7 6 5 3 1 0 1 7 6 5 3 ntnews.com.aul l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l BUSINESS WEEK Fear for defence industry Chris Jenkins CANBERRA: Australia runs the risk of losing the industrial capability needed to underpin national defence, the head of one of Australias largest defence companies says. Thales managing director Chris Jenkins yesterday said it was time to get serious about creating and delivering strategic defence industry capabilities. We risk not having the essential industrial depth necessary to underpin the defence of Australia, he told the Australian Defence Magazine congress in Canberra. Mr Jenkins said manufacturing industry was facing difficult times with the global downturn. Let me advance the view that this could become a devastating time, with many critical industrial capabilities lost in the wash and turbulence of the structural changes under way in the Australian economy, he said. And when the resource boom ends, be it gently or abruptly, the damage to Australian industry, the hollowing out of capability, will be a permanent scar. Mr Jenkins said manufacturing had been cen tral to delivering Australian defence capability for decades, and over the past 20 years there had been massive investment in Australia by the global defence giants. He said the 2010 defence industry policy was the most extensive and aspirational policy yet, declaring defence industry crucial to Australias national security and listing a series of priority industry capabilities (PICs). The 12 priority capabilities include maintaining domestic abilities to manufacture munitions, to drydock ships, to support defence electronic warfare systems and to perform highend systems integration. But that was 18 months ago, he said. Work laws plea CANBERRA: Individual workplace contracts are among a raft of demands being made by employers under the Fair Work system to meet the challenges of Australias patchwork economy, the Australian Industry Group says. Ai Group chief executive Heather Ridout said yesterday the Fair Work Act needed to be better aligned with flexibility and productivity if Australia was to manage the competition challenges ahead. An independent panel is reviewing the Act, which has been fully operational for two years, and will report to the Federal Government in May. Based on the real-life experiences of employers trying to implement and work within the Act, the evidence shows that workplaces have become less flexible and industrial disputes have increased markedly since the Act was implemented, she said of a survey of Ai Group members. Bargaining laws under the Fair Work Act had taken Australia backwards, Ms Ridout said. They are less flexible and unions have much more power in the bargaining process than the laws implemented by the Keating government in 1993-94 when enterprise bargaining was first introduced . . . , she said. Labour supply plan Aubin Pajarillo tests the Casuarina Square airconditioner. The Filipino immigrant worker moved to Darwin as a skilled migrant By NIGEL ADLAM THE Territory Government is in talks to extend a scheme to bring more foreign workers to the NT. NT Business Minister Delia Lawrie is negotiating a regional migration agreement with the Federal Government for the Top End. But she also wants another deal to cover Central Australia and the Katherine region. The Territorys economy is very strong and there are strong job opportunities throughout the NT, Ms Lawrie said. Business people are delighted with the plan to bring in more migrant workers. The NT Manufacturers Council said the move would enable bosses to recruit labour when they had been unable to find workers in the Northern Territory or elsewhere in Australia. Council president Stuart Kenny said companies might lose staff to resources projects, such as the $34 billion Ichthys gas venture, and not be able to backfill locally. Regional employers need the same mechanisms as Darwin-based organisations as they will face exactly the same problems within the same time frame, he said. Industry experts predict the Territory will need an additional 20,000 workers within the next five years. The Ichthys project will need a peak construction crew of 2700. Other major ventures include the $490 million Darwin prison, the $250 million Avenue estate and the $104 million Marine Supply Base. Bias shown to foreign telcos CANBERRA: Foreign telecom firms still are being preferred to local providers for government contracts, Opposition small-business spokesman Bruce Billson says. Mr Billson was commenting on the distribution of Commonwealth contracts after visiting Victorian teleconference firm Virtual Express Meeting, which has reviewed contract notes on the AusTender website. That found more than 70 per cent of federal departments and agencies commissioning teleconferencing services over the past two years had given business mostly to US companies. If the Gillard Government was serious about supporting small business it would be making moves to ensure they are getting better access to government contracts, Mr Billson said. Alcoa denies Saudi jobs offer MELBOURNE: Alcoa says it is not seeking to relocate staff en masse to a new plant in Saudi Arabia as it reviews the viability of 600 jobs at its Geelong smelter. Seven managers and supervisors from Victoria will help set up the smelting, rolling and refining oper ation in Ras al Khair in a deal Alcoa says is unrelated to the review of its Geelong plant. The aluminium giant is reviewing the viability of the Point Henry smelter in the face of falling aluminium prices, a high Australian dollar and rising input costs, with a decision on its future due in June. The Herald Sun reported those Point Henry workers were being offered lucrative pay deals to relocate to the Middle East. But yesterday an Alcoa spokeswoman said the Middle East job openings had no connection to the Point Henry review.

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