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MEDIA RELEASES

coral trout swimming

14 Jan 2021: Still time to have your say on new chapter of fisheries reforms

Acting Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries Yvette D’Ath said public consultation on draft fisheries harvest strategies is open and expressions of interest are sought for stakeholders to join fishery working groups.

“Public consultation has been a key tenet of the Sustainable Fisheries Strategy since the reforms commenced and this is a continuation of that process.

“A formal period of consultation by Fisheries Queensland is open until 31 January 2021 and I encourage all fishing stakeholders to provide feedback on the harvest strategies online.”

 

bottles of wine in a wine bar

13 Jan 2021: Takeaway liquor sales to support businesses and jobs

Queensland’s liquor licensees will continue to benefit from takeaway liquor sales with the Palaszczuk Government extending its support for small businesses during COVID-19.

Attorney General and Minister for Justice Shannon Fentiman said under the Queensland Government’s Emergency Response to COVID-19, the Commissioner for Liquor and Gaming had authorised an extension for certain licensees to sell takeaway alcohol until April 2021.

 

 

qld reconciliation awards poster

13 Jan 2021: 2021 QLD Reconciliation Awards open for nominations

Queenslanders are being encouraged to once again recognise the outstanding efforts to foster a more inclusive Queensland on the road to reconciliation with nominations now open for the 2021 Queensland Reconciliation Awards.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said Queensland businesses, community organisations, educational institutions and government entities whose work acknowledges the State’s rich histories of Aboriginal peoples and Torres Strait Islander peoples and advances reconciliation can now be nominated.

“With 2021 Awards nominations now open, we look forward to hearing more inspiring stories of how Queenslanders are working together for a fair and harmonious future for our State.”

 

 

job vacancy sign

13 Jan 2021: Job Vacancy rebound latest sign of strength for QLD economy

Job vacancies in Queensland rose to their highest level on record in the three months to the end of November 2020 according to data released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Treasurer and Minister for Investment Cameron Dick said the data demonstrated once again that Queensland’s strong health response and the delivery of our economic recovery plan are enabling Queensland’s economic recovery.

“Job vacancies increased to 47,900 in the November quarter, according to the ABS,” the Treasurer said.

“That’s close to double the 25,200 vacancies seen in the May quarter last year, the period which covered the tightest COVID-19 restrictions in Queensland.

 

 

lockdown easing

11 Jan 2021: Greater Brisbane lockdown ends tonight

Greater Brisbane’s strict lockdown will end at 6pm tonight.

But the need for some sensible precautions will remain in the Greater Brisbane hotspot, and for people who have been in the Greater Brisbane hotspot since January 2, for a further 10 days.

Until 1am, Friday January 22:

MASKS

  • Must be worn in indoor places including shopping centres and supermarkets, gyms, workplaces where people cannot socially distance and where it is safe, places of worship, libraries, public transport, taxis and ride share vehicles 
  • Must be carried at all times
  • Are not required to be worn when outdoors at a safe distance from other people (for example, walking a dog), in private vehicles or doing strenuous exercise

BUSINESSES AND VENUES

  • Indoors: 1 person per 4 sqm
  • Outdoors: 1 person per 2 sqm
  • Seated eating and drinking only
  • Smaller venues up to 200 sqm: 1 person per 2sqm up to a maximum of 50
  • No dancing except for weddings

GATHERINGS

  • Up to 20 in homes and public spaces
  • Weddings: up to 100. No restriction on dancing
  • Funerals: up to 100
  • Indoor concert venues or theatres: 50% capacity or 1 person per 4 sqm whichever is greater
  • Outdoor stadiums: 50% capacity with COVID-safe plans

 

 

seasonal workers in a lettuce field

08 Jan 2021: New rules will keep Australians safe and ensure seasonal worker recruitment can continue

National Cabinet has today agreed to implement new pre-departure COVID testing processes and reduced international arrival caps that will ensure seasonal workers can still come to Australia to work on farm this harvest. 
 
Minister for Agriculture and Deputy Leader of the Nationals, David Littleproud, said that exempting seasonal workers from the pre-departure testing demonstrated the government’s commitment to supporting our farmers at this time of severe workforce shortage.

 

 

mask and hand gel

08 Jan 2021: Urgent Steps to Keep QLD Safe

Brisbane will enter a three-day lockdown to stop the spread of the highly contagious UK strain of COVID-19.

From 6pm tonight until 6pm Monday, people in the local government areas of Brisbane, Moreton Bay, Ipswich, Redlands and Logan will be required to stay at home except:

  • to attend work if you can’t work from home;
  • to buy essentials like groceries and medicine;
  • look after the vulnerable; and
  • exercise within their neighbourhood

Masks will also need to be worn everywhere in those local government areas except if people are at home.

Cafes, pubs and restaurants will be open only for take-away service.

Funerals will be restricted to 20 guests and weddings restricted to 10 guests.

 

 

faulty airbags

06 Jan 2021: Queenslanders reminded to check for faulty airbags

The Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has conducted inspections at 679 second-hand motor dealers, auction houses and wreckers across Queensland to ensure dangerous vehicles were not being sold to unsuspecting consumers, as part of a national compliance operation for the Compulsory Takata Recall Notice

Acting Attorney-General Mick de Brenni said more than 20,000 vehicles were checked which found 105 vehicles fitted with the faulty Takata airbags.

“Airbags save lives and we want to protect Queenslanders from serious injury due to faulty airbags,” Mr de Brenni said.

 

 

avocado under biodegradable cling wrap

02 Jan 2021: Projects to transform Australia’s recycling sector

A project to turn food waste into biodegradable cling wrap and another using AI to sort plastic recycling are being supported by the Morrison Government, in an effort to grow the economy and help the environment.

The Government is investing $14.9 million into nine projects worth more than $40 million under Round 10 of Cooperative Research Centre Projects (CRC-P) initiative…

 

 

Farmer on tractor tending his crops

01 Jan 2021: Regional Investment Corporation AgriStarter Loan open for applications

The AgriStarter loan applications open today to support the next generation of farmers. The loan encourages new entrants to farming and can assist with succession arrangements. Up to $2 million can be borrowed over 10 years with the first five years interest only, followed by five years’ principal and interest repayments.  

 

 

australian government economic recovery plan

31 Dec 2020: New measures to help Australia’s economic recovery in 2021

As 2021 begins, the Morrison Government continues to deliver on its Economic Recovery Plan, building back from the COVID-19 crisis by securing Australian jobs and keeping businesses in business.

From 1 January 2021, a number of new measures come into effect across government including…

 

 

defence global competitiveness grant recipient Ferra office

30 Dec 2020: Setting small business up for export success

The Morrison Government is supporting Australia’s defence industry to pursue more opportunities in global markets at a critical time as the nation embarks on its COVID-19 economic recovery.

Minister for Defence Industry Melissa Price today announced the latest recipients of the Defence Global Competitiveness Grant program, helping small businesses overcome barriers to exporting.   

A total of $361,116 in grants funding has been awarded to four companies: Advanced Power Drives, Redarc Electronics, Safe Defence Australia, and Ferra Engineering…

 

 

rebuilding australia sign with a hand laying toy red bricks into a wall

28 Dec 2020: Rebuilding and reforming in a year like no other

The Morrison Government has this year passed major pieces of legislation to cushion the blow of the COVID-19 pandemic, keeping Australians in jobs, businesses in business and sparking a faster-than-anticipated economic recovery. 

Despite 2020’s challenges, the Government has also successfully delivered on its promises to cut red tape and improve Australia’s economic competitiveness, with reforms to the tax system, insolvency, financial services and foreign investment.

In total, the Government passed more than 40 pieces of legislation in 2020 from the Treasury Portfolio, including:…

 

 

two people at a grocery checkout

23 Dec 2020: Part-day public holiday in force tomorrow

Queensland business owners are being reminded of their obligations ahead of tomorrow’s Christmas Eve part-day public holiday.

Last year, Queensland workers became eligible for a part-day public holiday from 6pm-midnight on the night before Christmas

“Under the laws we passed last year, employees who work between 6pm and midnight on Christmas Eve are entitled to receive public holiday penalty rates, as provided for in their awards or agreements.

 

 

whale breaching in front of whale watching boat

23 Dec 2020: COVID restrictions eased for marine tourism

The Chief Health Officer has approved relaxations to COVID Safe requirements on marine tourism vessels…

“The updated COVID Safe plan approved by the Chief Health Officer means Marine Tourism operators will be able accommodate more passengers onboard to improve business viability while meeting health obligations.”…

The approved changes include:

Private point to point ferry services under three hours travel time – 

  • Can operate 100 per cent of indoor seated capacity provided passengers are in ticketed and allocated seating
  • Passengers on day trips must return in their allocated seat
  • Mask wearing encouraged
  • Outside of household and social groups, one person per two seats

 

 

mini busses parked in a row

22 Dec 2020: QLD Gov reform to support public transport operators

The Palaszczuk Government has announced it will slash the regulatory burden for bus and other public transport operators, to support the industry as part of Queensland’s plan for economic recovery.

In a move expected to save operators more than $1.5 million each year and generate business for local automotive shops, Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said from mid-2021, inspections would move to an annual basis and light public transport vehicles would have the option to be inspected at local approved inspection stations.

 

 

city in sunset with communication lines connecting the buildings

18 Dec 2020: Consultation on modernising business communications

Today, the Government is releasing a consultation paper seeking stakeholder feedback on regulatory impediments to modernising business communications…

Laws need to keep pace with how Australians want to communicate with each other when doing business, particularly where these laws prescribe outdated methods of communication. Making Treasury laws technology neutral will give Australians more choice and lowers the cost of doing business…

The consultation paper is available on the Treasury website, with consultation closing on 28 February 2021.

 

 

black storm clouds with blue sky in the background

18 Dec 2020: Get your workplace ready for summer storms and flooding

Queensland businesses have been issued a reminder to be ready to deal with more of Queensland’s wild summer weather – including the forecast La Nina heavy rainfall.

Industrial Relations Minister Grace Grace encouraged business owners to prepare their premises for severe weather and potential electrical safety issues.

 

 

strawberries being cut off a plant

15 Dec 2020: Australian economy thrives under raw deal: Insights

An ABARES Insights article released today explores whether Australia is missing out on domestic value creation opportunities because of the focus on trade in raw and minimally processed agricultural products.

‘Analysis of value creation in Australia through agricultural exports: Playing to advantages’ analyses returns from agricultural exports and compares value-creation pathways, such as adding attributes to products or downstream processing.

 

 

small boats at a wharf

15 Dec 2020: Updated requirements for EPIRBs and lifejackets on some small vessels

We have updated requirements for vessels under 7.5 metres in length without level flotation that operate in open waters more than 2 nautical miles from land.
From 1 January 2021, operators of these vessels will have the option to carry either: a float-free EPIRB, or if all persons on board are wearing a lifejacket, any GNSS (GPS) equipped EPIRB that complies with Australian Standard 4280.1:2017.

The updated requirements also introduce new definitions for: Float-free EPIRBs; float-free brackets; GNSS equipped EPIRBs; level flotation; and water-activated EPIRBs.

 

two people in full PPE

15 Dec 2020: Mightly QLD manufacturers to strengthen local PPE capability

Queensland business will shore up the state’s ability to produce PPE in the face of pandemics thanks to funding from the Queensland Government’s $50 million Essential Goods and Supply Chain Program. 

Acting Premier and Minister for State Development Steven Miles visited Tingalpa manufacturer, Crystalaid Manufacture, to announce funding for three manufacturers to boost manufacturing capability, in the wake of the impacts from COVID-19.

Mr Miles said that with Covid-19 completely changing the way of life for Queenslanders, the State is continuing to recognise the need to strengthen local PPE manufacturing capability.

pigs running in the sun

13 Dec 2020: Littleproud welcomes stronger farmer protections against extreme animal activists

Minister for Agriculture and Deputy Leader of the Nationals David Littleproud has today welcomed stronger measures to strip charitable status from extreme activist organisations that illegally harass, intimidate and spy on farming families.

“Extreme activist groups who target law-abiding Australian farmers will no longer be able to claim tax-free status for their fundraising efforts, with a broader range of prohibited conduct to be considered against their charitable status,” Minister Littleproud said.

buffet dinner with whole fish and vegetables

12 Dec 2020: Support Queensland farmers at the Christmas dinner table

Queenslanders can spread some much-needed Christmas cheer to the state’s producers by making sure great-tasting Queensland produce is on their Christmas dinner tables this year.

Minister for Agricultural Industry Development and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Communities Mark Furner said Queensland’s farmers were still producing delicious, world class fresh food despite the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic and drought.

bottles of wine in a row

10 Dec 2020: Bottle label directory to protect wine industry

Legislation passed parliament yesterday enabling Wine Australia to establish a Wine Export Label Directory to help wine brand owners protect their export wine labels against copycat labelling.

Minister for Agriculture David Littleproud said the passing of the Wine Australia Amendment (Label Directory) Act 2020 will lead to the creation of an online database of all Australian export wine labels. 

fruit at a grocery store

10 Dec 2020: Release of ACCC perishable agricultural goods inquiry report

The ACCC’s inquiry found examples of one-sided contracting practices, commercial retribution, inefficient allocation of risk and a lack of price transparency.

In particular, the ACCC indicated that as a result of matters identified during the inquiry, it will conduct further compliance activity with respect to a range of alleged unfair contract terms in the chicken meat industry and alleged non-compliance by horticulture wholesalers within the Horticulture Code.

business closed sign on door

10 Dec 2020: Insolvency reforms pass parliament

The reforms, which were announced by the Government as part of the 2020-21 Budget, will strengthen our insolvency system to better support small businesses dealing with the economic impact of COVID-19.

The legislation introduces a new, simplified debt restructuring process that can be accessed by small businesses experiencing distress. This process draws on key features of the Chapter 11 bankruptcy model in the United States and will apply to incorporated businesses with liabilities of less than $1 million – covering around 76 per cent of businesses subject to insolvencies today, 98 per cent of whom who have less than 20 employees.

 

white utes on a car carrier

10 Dec 2020: Morrison Government delivers expanded access to full expensing for businesses

The Morrison Government today passed legislation through the Parliament to expand eligibility for the temporary full expensing measure to help create more jobs and to ensure more businesses can recover faster from the economic impact of COVID-19…

Full expensing temporarily allows businesses with an aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion to deduct the full cost of eligible depreciable assets of any value in the year they are first used or installed.

 

people sitting in lounge talking about line of credit

09 Dec 2020: Simplifying access to credit for consumers and small businesses

The Morrison Government has today introduced legislation to further support Australia’s economic recovery by reducing the costs and time it takes for consumers and businesses to access credit.

These reforms will simplify Australia’s credit framework, reducing red tape, improving competition and enabling a more efficient flow of credit while maintaining strong consumer protections.

waitress in coffee shop

09 Dec 2020: JobTrainer ready to sign up Queensland job seekers

“The fund will support young people launching or developing a career, and job seekers affected by the pandemic who want to pursue new opportunities with better employment prospects. 

JobTrainer will fund thousands of extra training places and covers a range of short courses, certificate and diploma qualifications. 

“We’re talking about jobs in health, plumbing, manufacturing, electro technology, cyber security and more. 

The Minister said the JobTrainer courses currently available for Queenslanders are published at www.desbt.qld.gov.au/JobTrainer 

construction site with crane

08 Dec 2020: Record capital investment to create jobs announced

Mr Miles said in the next 12 – 24 months EDQ would invest a record more than $200 million in South East Queensland alone across a range of project types from site enabling infrastructure works to complex building projects.

“EDQ’s capital works program will support over 650 construction jobs and enable more than $1 billion in private sector investment,” Mr Miles said.  

The EDQ works program briefing will be held at the Civil Contractors Federation offices, Brisbane Technology Park, 11 Hi Tech Ct, Eight Mile Plains on Tuesday 2 February 2021 commencing at 7.00am. For those unable to attend in person there will be arrangements to livestream the session.

To secure a seat and register your attendance, contact Civil Contractors Federation https://www.ccfqld.com/event-4067361

logging truck going down a road with piles of timber beside the road and on the truck

08 Dec 2020: DNA timber tests to find those who go against the grain

An Australian first national DNA testing program used to verify the species and origin of imported timber sold at retail outlets has released its first round of results, confirming more than 60 per cent of the species’ labels were accurate. 

Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries Jonno Duniam said the compliance testing was conducted to build consumer trust and identify those who trade off illegally harvested products.

empty plastic bottles in a row

08 Dec 2020: Landmark legislation passes Parliament – protects environment and boosts economy

The Australian Parliament has today passed the Morrison Government’s unprecedented waste and recycling laws that cement Australia’s world leading waste ban, create economic opportunities and jobs during the nation’s post-covid recovery and which protect our marine environment.

Minister for the Environment Sussan Ley said that the passage of Australia’s first ever national waste legislation, the Recycling and Waste Reduction Act 2020, demonstrates the Morrison Government’s commitment to Australia taking responsibility for its own waste and is a giant step towards achieving our seven ambitious national targets for waste by 2030.

“The export ban sends a strong message that it is time to take responsibility for our waste, to seize the economic opportunities of transforming our recycling industry and to stop sending problem waste overseas,” Minister Ley said.

people with laptops around a white table

07 Dec 2020: Backing Aussie startups owned and led by women

Innovative, female-led startups across Australia are being backed by the Morrison Government, with nearly $12 million in support to help them scale up and grow their businesses.

The Boosting Female Founders Initiative is supporting 51 female-founded startups that are majority owned and led by women, with grants of between $25,000 and $480,000.

fuel apps

05 Dec 2020: Queenslanders to save on fuel, permanently

Queenslanders will have permanent access to real-time fuel price reporting, after a two-year trial of the program delivered $9.8 million in savings to consumers at the bowser.

Energy Minister Mick de Brenni said the Palaszczuk Government was delivering permanent fuel price reporting to save Queenslanders money as part of its economic recovery plan, as Queensland was Good to Go.

rice dish being manufactured by machinery

04 Dec 2020: Grants to modernise Australian manufacturing

The Morrison Government is backing Australian manufacturers with shovel-ready projects that will create jobs and drive the country’s COVID-19 comeback, with applications now open for round two of the $52.8 million Manufacturing Modernisation Fund (MMF).

Businesses will be able to apply for grants of between $100,000 and $1 million to invest in new technology to increase their productivity, create new jobs and drive economic growth.

strawberry farm

04 Dec 2020: Getting Queenslander back to work on the farm

A program that encourages Queenslanders to fill short-term labour demands in agriculture, including incentive payments up to $1500 to help with travel and accommodation, has been expanded statewide…

The Federal Government is also offering up to $6,000 for Australian jobseekers to relocate for farming jobs, and our incentive scheme is additional to that,” Mr Furner said.

plastic straws held on a beach

03 Dec 2020: It’s the last straw for single-use plastics

The Palaszczuk Government has re-introduced legislation to ban single-use plastic items in Queensland, starting with straws, stirrers, cutlery and plates.

“In recognition of the fact that this has been a difficult year for many small businesses in the hospitality sector, the ban’s start date will be no earlier than 1 September 2021, and we will confirm the start date once the Bill passes in early 2021.

seafarer with binoculars on boat at sea

02 Dec 2020: Understanding the effects of COVID-19 on seafarers

We are holding a special research webinar on Thursday 10 December to discuss the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on seafarers. The pandemic has prompted researchers around the world to assess the impact of the pandemic on the wellbeing of seafarers.

Five panels of researchers and professionals in this field will contribute to the discussion. 

Date: Thursday 10 Dec 2020 Time: 2:00pm AET

 

making it in qld

01 Dec 2020: Making it in Queensland and water security key to state’s economic recovery

The Palaszczuk Government has outlined a clear and strong vision for the state’s manufacturing sector in today’s Queensland State Budget that includes a $40.5 million Making it in Queensland strategy, and strong support for water security and regional development.

Making it in Queensland includes:

  • $15.5 million – to further boost the hugely effective Made in Queensland grants program with a new focus on bringing critical manufacturing such as medical personal protective equipment back to Queensland
  • $16.5 million – to drive development of advanced manufacturing skills through creation of Manufacturing Skills Queensland, an independent not-for-profit industry body to support workers, employers, apprentices and trainees, and …

travel agent at desk on phone

01 Dec 2020: Travel agents COVID-19 payment

The Morrison Government will provide a one-off payment to assist travel agents in recognition that many continue to work hard processing consumer refunds, whilst unable to trade due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Payments will be scaled, with a minimum payment of $1500 for a business with a turnover of $50 000 up to a maximum payment of $100,000 for a business with a turnover of $20 million.

think big shop small sign

01 Dec 2020: Big Plans for Small Business

The Palaszczuk Government is backing Queensland small businesses to further drive economic recovery with a $140 million Big Plans for Small Business strategy funded in Budget 2020-21 to lift competitiveness and resilience.

“We also introduced a target of 25 per cent of all government purchases to be from Queensland small and medium size businesses from July 1 which will be extended to 30 per cent by June 2022.

“Now we are committing another $140 million to back these valuable employers, building on our substantial support so far.”

The Big Plans for Small Business strategy will support private investment with:

  • An initial $100 million Business Investment Fund from the $500 million Backing Queensland Business Investment Fund to invest in small to medium sized businesses that have significant growth potential and will create Queensland based jobs…

grass growing up through dry earth

27 Nov 2020: $5 million Future Drought Fund investment to build drought resilience in agricultural landscapes

“The $5 billion Future Drought Fund is an important part of the Australian Government’s Drought Response, Resilience and Preparedness Plan that outlines immediate action for those in drought, support for wider communities and how we support building long-term resilience and preparedness” Minister Littleproud said…

“The projects involve:

  • testing and demonstrating new farming practices such as the use of different pasture/forage varieties and novel grazing strategies
  • tracking and forecasting pasture biomass to plan operations and schedule decision points
  • monitoring and understanding soil moisture to assist in preparing and responding to drought conditions
  • peer to peer learning and sharing the latest thinking on drought resilience.

Find out more about NRM Drought Resilience Program – Landscapes, including a list of the successful projects, here: www.agriculture.gov.au/ag-farm-food/drought/future-drought-fund/nrm-landscapes 

 

female farmer in field with cows on ipad

27 Nov 2020: Natural disaster guides to help producers get ready for the season

Now is the time for primary producers to prepare for natural disasters to help ensure the safety of family, workers and animals…

“We have specially-tailored natural disaster guides to help producers protect their property, business, livestock and crops….

To view the guides, visit www.business.qld.gov.au and search for ‘natural disasters’ and ‘preparing animals for natural disasters’.

 

disability support worker laughing with a young client

26 Nov 2020: New laws to strengthen disability worker screening

New legislation has been introduced into the Queensland Parliament today (26 November) to establish a nationally consistent worker screening system for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

“This Bill will enhance safeguards for NDIS participants by expanding the range of offences that will automatically disqualify people from being able to provide services under the scheme,” Mr Crawford said.

Mr Crawford said the Bill would enable the monitoring of a clearance holders’ criminal history across all states and territories.

 

traceability grant

25 Nov 2020: Traceability grants to boost our premium exports

Applications for Round Two of the Traceability Grants Program are now open. The Australian Government is encouraging applications from farming groups, research organisations and other eligible industry bodies for grants to support projects that enhance traceability in the agricultural produce supply chain.

Round Two of the Traceability Grants Program opens on 25 November 2020 and closes on 21 January 2021.

For more details or to apply visit the Community Grants Hub here.

 

berries in plastic containers ready for sale

24 Nov 2020: Helping growers boost the PASE of their exports

AUSVEG has been awarded a grant to develop the Vegetable Exporter Business Training program.

The training will give horticulture growers the business skills they need to increase the efficiency of their exports.

“AUSVEG has been granted $41,617 under the Package Assisting Small Exporters program to develop the Vegetable Exporter Business Training program, which will help horticulture farmers grow their exporting skills and efficiency,” Minister Littleproud said. 

 

business funding guide poster

24 Nov 2020: Refreshed Business Funding Guide supports COVID crisis survival

An updated Business Funding Guide, which has been revised to reflect feedback and support small businesses impacted by the COVID crisis, has been released today.

The guide, developed by the Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman in partnership with Scottish Pacific Business Finance, is primarily written for accountants, bookkeepers and other accredited financial advisers, to assist their small business clients to find appropriate funding and increase their chances of getting approved for finance.

 

epirb in rough seas with ship sinking in background and liferaft to the side

23 Nov 2020: Don’t wait to order your float-free EPIRB

Some domestic commercial vessel operators have advised that they are having difficulties in procuring a float-free EPIRB. Stock of float-free EPIRBs is still available at some retailers. Operators having difficulty in purchasing one are therefore encouraged to shop around. If you cannot source one, we strongly recommend that you place an order with a supplier now. A new shipment is due into Australia shortly, so don’t wait, order your float-free EPIRB today

From 1 January 2021, AMSA Inspectors will be checking. If you have ordered a float-free EPIRB but it hasn’t arrived and been installed, ensure that you keep evidence of purchase, such as a receipt or invoice onboard your vessel.

 

seafarer on ship looking out to sea

23 Nov 2020: Maritime Mental Health Awareness Training Online

International Seafarers’ Welfare and Assistance Network now offering Maritime Mental Health Awareness Training Online. Learn to understand mental health, recognise the signs of mental health problems and respond to concerns on board with the first training sessions being offered in December 2020. 

 

concrete pump pouring floor in building

23 Nov 2020: More businesses to qualify for full expensing

The Morrison Government will expand eligibility for the legislated temporary full expensing measure, to drive more investment, create more jobs and further support our economic recovery from COVID‑19.

The temporary full expensing measure is a central element of the Government’s JobMaker Plan announced in the 2020‑21 Budget. Full expensing temporarily allows businesses with aggregated turnover of less than $5 billion to deduct the full cost of eligible depreciable assets of any value in the year they are first used or installed.

 

world fisheries day, commercial fishing boats

23 Nov 2020: Working together on World Fisheries Day

World Fisheries Day is celebrated on 21st of November each year, highlighting the importance of maintaining the world’s fisheries.

This year the Australian Fisheries Management Authority (AFMA), is encouraging Australians to celebrate the great shape Commonwealth fisheries are in, by supporting the seafood industry and enjoying delicious, sustainable seafood.

“On any given day 360 fishing boats are in Commonwealth waters, catching fish and contributing to Australia’s economy.”

 

Australian training awards 2020 poster

21 Nov 2020: QLD celebrates success at national training awards

A Queensland small business and trainee have been named the best in the nation at last night’s Australian Training Awards.

 “Kent Saddlery from Stanthorpe took out the Small Employer of the Year Award with Breanna Cassidy from Tinana on the Fraser Coast named the Australian Trainee of the Year.

The Australian Training Awards showcase the national training system and recognise the individuals, employers and training providers demonstrating excellence in vocational education and training.

The Queensland finalists for the 2020 Australian Training Awards are… Australian School-based Apprentice of the Year: Jennifer Myers from North Lakes (Certificate III in Allied Health Assistance)

 

sign on buiding come in we are hiring

19 Nov 2020: Labour force figures for October

Labour force figures released today by the ABS show that labour market conditions in Australia continued to recover in October, with employment increasing by 178,800 over the month, exceeding all market expectations. 

Full-time employment increased by 97,000 (or 1.1 per cent), the largest monthly increase on record, while part-time employment rose by 81,800 (or 2.0 per cent).

 

freighter at sea

16 Nov 2020: Seafarers return to pre-covid19 contracts

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) has announced that from 28 February 2021 the interim COVID arrangements which have permitted seafarers to serve longer than 11 months on-board ships will end.

During the past six months, AMSA has monitored the level of compliance and intervened to ensure the repatriation of seafarers whose duration on board were excessive. AMSA has now issued a new marine notice, Marine Notice 10/2020, stating a return to international requirements, of no more than 11 continuous months on board, will be applied from 28 February 2021. 

 

national cabinet poster with scott morrisons hands writing a document

13 Nov 2020: National Cabinet

The National Cabinet met today (13 Nov) for the 31st time to discuss Australia’s COVID-19 response, the Australian COVID-19 Vaccination Policy, the Framework for National Reopening by Christmas, helping Australians prepare to go back to work in a COVID-safe environment and getting the economy moving again.

 

centrelink sign with medicare logo below

10 Nov 2020: Jobseeker supplement extended to March

The Morrison Government will extend temporary support through the social security system, for those Australians seeking work, for a further three months as economic confidence and momentum builds.

Both existing and new JobSeekers will be paid the Coronavirus Supplement at a rate of $150 per fortnight from 1 January 2021 through to 31 March 2021 on top of their base rate of payment and other supplements they are eligible to receive.

 

basket of strawberries in front of a strawberry field

10 Nov 2020: Boosting work opportunities for young Australians

The Australian Government is providing additional incentives to encourage young people to undertake seasonal work across the country. The Morrison Government is investing $17.4 million from its Budget 2020-21 to help job seekers with relocation assistance to take up an ongoing job or to temporarily relocate to carry out seasonal agricultural work.

 

make arms in suits looking at contracts

10 Nov 2020: Crackdown on Unfair Contract Terms to protect small businesses

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell has welcomed a national agreement to strengthen protections for small businesses from Unfair Contract Terms.

Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar announced today that Commonwealth and state and territory governments have agreed to make unfair contract terms unlawful, giving courts the power to impose a civil penalty when a breach occurs.

 

people on beach enjoying bbq seafood

08 Nov 2020: Great Australian seafood is ‘Easy As’

Preparing great Aussie seafood meals at home is ‘Easy As’ according to a catchy new industry campaign being supported by the Australian Government. 

“When Aussie families buy seafood sourced from Australian managed fisheries, they’re supporting best-practice fisheries management that keeps our oceans well stocked for future generations of seafood lovers,” Minister Littleproud said.

“We’re supporting jobs across our seafood industry. The hard work of Australian fishers has made our seafood the highest quality in the world.

 

r and d tax incentive poster

04 Nov 2020: New guidance to support investment in research and development

The Morrison Government has strengthened its commitment to supporting companies to invest in research and development, releasing refreshed R&D Tax Incentive (R&DTI) guidance today…Companies are encouraged to use this resource and the range of helpful guidance available at business.gov.au to self-assess the eligibility of their R&D activities.

 

trees burining in a bushfire

02 Nov 2020: $2 million for Indigenous Fire and Land Management Workshops

The Morrison Government is highlighting the importance of Indigenous fire and land management practices with the opening of a $2 million grants round to strengthen and share Traditional Knowledge and practices.

As part of the Morrison Government’s $200 million Wildlife and Bushfire Habitat Recovery fund, Indigenous organisations and Traditional Owner groups can now apply for grant funding to run workshops, build understanding and share knowledge of Indigenous fire and land management practices.

This includes the use of Indigenous burning techniques which can mitigate fire risk, reduce fuel loads, control weeds, promote growth in native pastures, strengthen biodiversity outcomes and provide environmental and cultural benefits.

 

seafarer with cargo ship in background

02 Nov 2020: Don’t wait – high demand anticipated in 2021 and 2022 for STCW training courses and medical fitness

Due to amendments to the STCW Convention in 2017, over 10,000 AMSA issued STCW certificates will be due for renewal in early 2022.

Because of this, we expect the demand for continued competence training will be very high throughout the rest of 2021 and into 2022.

We strongly recommend all seafarers complete their mandatory continued competence training courses as soon as practical. The continued competence training courses are delivered by AMSA approved training organisations in all states and the Northern Territory.

 

north pine dam

30 Oct 2020: Future Drought Fund adoption and innovation hubs open for applications

A competitive grants process to establish eight Drought Resilience Adoption and Innovation Hubs across regional Australia has opened today.

Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, David Littleproud said the Hubs would provide networks for researchers, primary producers and community groups to work together to enhance drought resilience practices.

 

drone in camaflage colours

29 Oct 2020: Increased support for business to access defence industry grants

The Morrison Government is making it easier for small and medium sized businesses in the defence sector to access defence industry grant programs.

From 12 November, changes to the co-contribution ratios in three existing defence industry grant programs will help small and medium businesses access support during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The co-contributions have been reduced from the existing 50:50 ratio, as follows:

  • New applicants for a Capability Improvement Grant or a Defence Global Competitiveness Grant will only be required to fund 20 per cent of the value of their eligible project; and
  • New applicants for a Sovereign Industrial Capability Priority Grant will only be required to fund 30 per cent of the value of their eligible project.

In another move to support industry, maximum grant values will increase:

  • Sovereign Industrial Capability Priority Grants will increase from $50,000-$1 million to $70,000-$1.4 million;
  • Capability Improvement Grants will increase from $2,500-$150,000 to $4,000-$240,000; and
  • Defence Global Competitiveness Grants will increase from $15,000-$150,000 to $24,000-$240,000.

moreton bay whale watching boat at moreton island

27 Oct 2020: Every passenger counts – online information sessions

The new requirements for passenger vessels came into effect on the 31 May 2020.

There is a community expectation that the safety of passengers has been considered before they get on board your vessel. These changes will help ensure the safety of passengers during their voyage.   

If you’re still not sure what this means for you, we will be holding online information sessions soon. 

You can register here to attend

moreton bay whale watching boat at moreton island

23 Oct 2020: Budget continues relief for Australia’s Domestic Commercial Vessel Industry

Mr McCormack said the Australian Government’s 2018 commitment that no levy would be charged to industry for the first three years of AMSA’s delivery of National System services had now been extended by another year, meaning no levy will be charged in 2021-22…

The latest relief announcement builds on the Government’s recent continuation of automatic extensions for international domestic seafarer certificates until at least 31 January 2021.

“That means if a seafarer’s certificate expires between 26 March 2020 and 31 January 2021, they will automatically receive an extension at no cost and with no application required

blue and white straws in a circle

22 Oct 2020: New expert body to accelerate product stewardship

The Morrison Government is investing $1 million in the establishment of a new Product Stewardship Centre of Excellence that will play a key role in driving Australia’s circular economy towards an eighty per cent recovery rate across all waste streams by 2030.

The government will also be releasing a National Plastics Plan before the end of this year.

For more information on product stewardship, see https://www.environment.gov.au/protection/waste-resource-recovery/product-stewardship.

women in hat in home study

22 Oct 2020: QLD now able to access Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment

Queenslanders who are self isolating or in quarantine during the COVID-19 pandemic can now access support with a $1500 Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment arrangements have been extended to Queensland after an agreement with the Commonwealth.

pos machine with mastercard

21 Oct 2020: Driving innovation in the payments system

The Morrison Government will review the regulatory architecture of the Australian payments system as part of the Digital Business Package announced in the 2020-21 Budget to ensure it remains fit for purpose and is capable of supporting continued innovation for the benefit of both businesses and consumers… 

The review will report to Government by April 2021.

fish swimming between roots

21 Oct 2020: Project grants set to help restore fisheries habitats

The Australian Government is investing $8 million in 28 projects across the country under the Fisheries Habitat Restoration Program to assist in restoring the health and functionality of coastal and estuarine fisheries habitats….Fishers for Fish Habitats in the Maroocy River and Northern Moreton Bay, QLD $300,000, Service Provider:  RLP Healthy Land and Water

business newspaper

16 Oct 2020: Big businesses urged to act quickly to report payment times

The Australian Small Business and Family Enterprise Ombudsman Kate Carnell has urged big businesses to report their payment times to small business suppliers as soon as possible, with the Payment Times Reporting Scheme to come into effect from January 2021.

Ms Carnell says it is important businesses with an annual turnover of $100 million-plus heed the intention of the legislation early.

“These new laws represent important progress at a time when Australian small businesses are hurting and need to be paid on time to survive,” Ms Carnell says.

“I am strongly encouraging the 3,000 businesses this legislation applies to, to do the right thing and comply with the payment time reporting requirements as soon as possible.

 

north harbour sign with chris in front of it

15 Oct 2020: The ABS labour force figures for September

Labour force figures released today by the ABS reflect the ongoing impact of COVID-19, border closures and restrictions on Australia’s labour market activity.

Seasonally adjusted employment decreased by 29,500 in September, to stand at 12,571,900, following a strong increase of 129,100 in August.  The unemployment rate also increased slightly, by 0.1 percentage points, to 6.9 per cent.

The decrease in jobs was most significant in Victoria, much of which was in Stage 4 lockdowns during the reporting period, which saw its level of employment fall by 35,500 (or 1.1 per cent) in September 2020.  Outside of Victoria, the rest of Australia saw an increase of 6,000 jobs.

 

north harbour sign with chris in front of it

15 Oct 2020: North Harbour Priority Development Area to drive jobs growth

“This site sits outside the ShapingSEQ urban footprint. The Priority Development Area mechanism is designed to unlock ‘out of the box’ projects like this that have the potential to create significant economic and community benefits.”

Member for Bancroft Chris Whiting said Moreton Bay Regional Council had written to the government proposing a PDA to facilitate the North Harbour development…

“If it stacks up, the $1.2 billion expansion of North Harbour will deliver a 2,000 dwelling canal estate, 400 berth marina, recreational space and environmental area.

“It also has great potential to stimulate our local boating industry and will support 7,000 jobs during construction

 

chris deception bay

14 Oct 2020: Widening of Deception Bay Road to become a reality under Palaszczuk Government

In a great piece of news for Deception Bay, the process of widening of Deception Bay Road between Park Road and the Bruce Highway will start under a Palaszczuk Government, said Chris Whiting MP.

A re-elected Palaszczuk Government will invest up to $1.5 million in planning for the duplication of Deception Bay Road, between the Bruce Highway and Park Road.

“Creating four lanes between the highway and park road is the missing piece of the puzzle for Deception Bay Road and it’s something every local knows is needed,” said Chris Whiting.

 

tax relief poster josh frydenberg

06 Oct 2020: Tax relief to back hard-working Australians and to create more jobs

The Morrison Government will deliver significant tax relief as part of our Economic Recovery Plan for Australia to create jobs, rebuild our economy and secure Australia’s future.

Bringing forward Stage two of our Personal Income Tax Plan will see more than 11 million taxpayers get a tax cut backdated to 1 July 2020.

Business will be supported with time-limited tax incentives that will provide immediate expensing and loss carry-back.

 

josh freydenberg poster rebuilding the economy

06 Oct 2020: Rebuilding the economy and securing Australia’s future

The Morrison Government’s Economic Recovery Plan for Australia will create jobs, rebuild our economy and secure Australia’s future.

COVID-19 has resulted in the most severe global economic crisis since the Great Depression. As a result of the pandemic, the Australian economy has entered its first recession in almost 30 years.

By bringing the Budget back to balance for the first time in 11 years and maintaining our AAA credit rating we entered the crisis from a position of economic strength, providing us with the fiscal firepower to respond when we needed it most.

 

josh frydenberg poster economic recovery plan

06 Oct 2020: Economic recovery plan for Australia

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government has provided $257 billion in direct economic support to cushion the blow and strengthen the recovery.

The 2020-21 Budget commits a further $98 billion including, $25 billion in direct COVID-19 response measures and $74 billion in new measures to create jobs.

Under our plan, the economy is forecast to grow by 4¼ per cent next calendar year and unemployment is expected to fall to 6½ per cent by the June quarter 2022.

We will do this by:

  • Supporting nearly half a million young Australians with a new JobMaker hiring credit
  • Investing a record amount in skills and training to make sure Australians have the skills they need to get a job
  • Supporting our manufacturing industry to build our sovereign capability and help create jobs
  • Incentivising business to invest in their business, creating more economic activity and more jobs
  • Providing tax relief for more than 11 million hard working Australians, to put more money in their pockets to spend in small businesses across the country and help create jobs
  • Investing more in infrastructure now to create more jobs

 

combined rda and aust gov logo divi

06 Oct 2020: Growing a Strong and Resilient Regional Australia

Please find attached the Regional Ministerial Budget Statement 2020-21 – Growing a Strong and Resilient Regional Australia a statement by the Honourable Michael McCormack MP, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development.

A link to the document can also be accessed here on the Department of Infrastructure’s website.

 

workers on a building site

05 Oct 2020: 100,000 new apprenticeship positions to lead the COVID-19 economic recovery

The Morrison Government will invest an additional $1.2 billion to support Australian businesses to employ 100,000 new apprentices or trainees as part of our COVID-19 economic recovery plan….businesses who take on a new Australian apprentice will be eligible for a 50 per cent wage subsidy, regardless of geographic location, occupation, industry or business size.

 

QRRRF map of moreton bay region

05 Oct 2020: $9.6m in further funding to disaster proof

Communities from the Torres Strait to the Gold Coast will benefit from an almost $9.6 million investment in projects to improve local disaster resilience and risk reduction.

Minister for Emergency Management David Littleproud said the 49 projects were being delivered through the $13.1 million Queensland Resilience and Risk Reduction Fund (QRRRF), a joint initiative between Australian and Queensland Governments…

To find out more about the projects funded visit www.qra.qld.gov.au/QRRRF

 

bar men behind bar

02 Oct 2020: Keeping QLD’s future COVID safe

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said the new roadmap gives more certainty to the community and businesses through to the end of this year by outlining monthly easing of restrictions – including increasing gatherings in public spaces, unseated drinking and eating, dancing at weddings and removing some border restrictions.

Unseated drinking and eating will come into effect from 4pm 2 October.

If there is no unlinked community transmission in NSW for 28 days, Stage 5 could start from 1am 1 November and will see the Queensland border open up to NSW visitors and return travellers, while also increasing public gatherings to 40 people, permitting unseated drinking and eating at venues with a COVID Safe Plan and allowing up to 40 people to dance at a wedding with a COVID Safe Plan.

Stage 6, anticipated from 1am 1 December, will see public gatherings increase to 50 people, increased attendances at outdoor events and no restrictions on people dancing at weddings.

The Queensland border will remain closed to Victoria until community transmission is under control.