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THE COUNTRYMAN

NEWS

 

Selwyn Johnston

INDEPENDENT COMMUNITY REPRESENTATIVES'

ADVOCATE

(Cairns... Far North Queensland)

 

Thank you for visiting my on-line office. 

I appreciate your interest in the issues that effect not only Queenslanders, but all Australians. 

Please let me hear from you about your views on the issues that matter to your Family, your Community and your State.  

Sincerely,

Selwyn Johnston

 

One person, with the support of the community, can make a difference

 

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FOREIGN OWNERSHIP

 

INDEX

THE ISSUE

Foreign Investment Review Board

General Agreement of Trade in Services (GATS)   

Multilateral Agreement on Investment - (MAI)

Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency

Is the MAI -   DEAD?
Queensland's Natural Resources

Tipperary Station - NT

THE SOLUTION

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THE ISSUE

The reality of foreign ownership by multi-national companies operating in Australia, paying little or no tax, is one of the inevitable results of the foreign take-over of Australian companies.

It ought to determine the approach that is taken by Australian officials in the negotiations on the Multilateral Agreement on Investment. This is part of the same structure as the:

General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade

World Trade Organisation

Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation Forum

and the rest of the lame duck policies in Australia's foreign trade stable, into which we have been dragged by our Governments determination to go along with the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.

The Multilateral Agreement on Investment proposes that every member of the World Trade Organisation (which includes Australia) must accord to foreign companies full rights to establish themselves in all sectors of the economy of that Country. Additionally, the so-called host country, 'Australia', is required to adjust its domestic laws - and, if necessary, to repeal any existing laws and policies - that may favour local industries at the expense of the foreign companies. This means that any significant local company in Australia will have an axe over its head.

Since the Australian Taxation Office has admitted that it cannot effectively collect taxes from multinationals, (see Tax Reform) the Australian companies that will be taken over by them will effectively be, free from tax.

The Federal Government must be 'out of its mind' to even consider such advantages to multinational companies over Australian companies.

There must be immediate audit of the Foreign Investment Review Board for allowing an alleged 90% of Corporate Australia being foreign owned. A review of The Foreign Acquisitions and Takeovers Act - 1975 is imperative to eliminate current areas subject to abuse and which are contrary to the national interest.

Australia's wealth MUST be re-invested in Australia.

 

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THE SOLUTION

Bring foreign ownership and investment back under control.

Public assets including WATER resources, ELECTRICITY and COMMUNICATION facilities, PUBLIC TRANSPORT and EMERGENCY services', must remain in Australian ownership. 

We must recognise that selling our land, our industries and our heritage, is a direct assault upon our independence as a Nation and inevitably compromises our ability to act in our own best interests. 

Capital flowing into Australia from foreign investors must be largely put into development of NEW industries. Currently most of this money is merely taking over existing industries. This does not create new jobs - it usually means a loss of jobs and revenue. This necessitates a complete overhaul of the Foreign Investment Review Board, which must be revitalised and re-directed. 

We must consider reciprocal arrangements with foreign countries. (eg if an Australian citizen cannot own land in a particular country, then citizens of that country cannot own land in Australia). 

While not resorting to legislation, unless necessary, we must encourage Superannuation Funds to give preference to at least 75% in Australian investments. In addition, to invest at least 2% of their funds in Australian Research and Development.

 

 

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Written and Authorised by Selwyn Johnston, Cairns FNQ 4870