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Media log

Topic 2: How does Government work? Political institution

Government and business of Australia are interrelated. There are measures that a government takes and the businesses are required to follow them. Government works in the overall welfare of the country and takes measure that is required.

In the article of ABC News about Governments’ consideration for taking radical measures to put the economy into the hibernation for surviving coronavirus, Jane Norman researches about the steps taken by the Australian government for letting the businesses emerge after the crisis of coronavirus. Banks, lenders and landlords will bear some pain for waving of all the overheads that include rent and repayment of mortgages for the next six months. The government is trying to find a way of distributing pain equitably. 

The situation is critical and to manage that government has taken steps by closing the doors of the business. There are various measures that the government is planning for keeping the businesses and economy afloat. Government of Australia is building measures like policies of hibernation of business and also providing benefit to people who are affected. The government has doubled the unemployment benefit and introduced a supplement of $550 and is also providing other supports. The government has implement decision in a manner that it will affect the business houses. But, government of Australia is also responsible for taking care of people and for that it has taken various measures.

Norman, J. (2020, March 27). Government considering radical measures to put economy into hibernation to survive coronavirus. ABC News. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-03-27/coronavirus-business-hibernation-australia-responds-to-pandemic/12095738

Article

Government considering radical measures to put economy into hibernation to survive coronavirus

By political reporter Jane Norman

Posted 27 MarMarch 2020, updated 27 MarMarch 2020

The Federal Government is considering a radical suite of measures to effectively put the economy into hibernation, allowing businesses to emerge after the coronavirus crisis, and resume and rehire without crippling debts.

Key points:

  • A third federal stimulus package is expected to be announced within days

  • Finance Minister Mathias Cormann called on all Australians to pull together

  • The Federal Government is also considering how it can help Pacific nations

As the Government prepares to unveil its third economic rescue package "within days", policies are being developed to help business owners see out the crisis without having to walk away from their companies.

Banks, lenders and landlords would all be asked to wear some of the pain, waiving all overheads including rents and mortgage repayments for at least the next six months.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison, speaking after National Cabinet, said he would announce plans to help businesses hibernate within days.

"The idea is simple — there are businesses which will have to close their doors," Prime Minister Scott Morrison said.

"They will have to keep them closed either because we have made it necessary for them to do so, or simply there is just not the business to keep their doors open.

"We want those businesses to start again. And we do not want, over the course of the next six months or as long as it takes, for those businesses to be so saddled by debt, so saddled by rental payments, so saddled by other liabilities, that they will not be able to start again on the other side."

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann called on all Australians to pull together.

"The key here is to come up with a fair and equitable way to spread the pain, so that everyone has the best possible opportunity to be there on the other side," he said.

"That is not easy."

As the global catastrophe caused by COVID-19 continues to escalate, Mr Morrison spoke to the leaders of the world's 20 largest economies on Thursday night.

There are fears some countries could collapse and the Government is exploring ways of helping its Pacific neighbours.

In Australia, Treasury has been asked to look at "all options" to keep the economy afloat but Senator Cormann has ruled out a UK-style wage subsidy scheme, arguing it would not work in Australia.

Topic 3: How does Business influence Government? Political Actors

Donations and big pockets are one way in Australia by which Businesses influence the Government and the policies made in the country. The politics in Australia lacks money and business provides them with that.

In the article the influence game: How to access power in Australia by Margot o’ Neill, it has been stated that in the past three years 70% of the federal ministers have accepted the hospitality by the corporates. It might be anything from tickets to the AFL grand or membership of airline lounges or a lunch that is lavish. Also, various ministers’ seniors and assistants have taken up a job with interest that is special after quitting politics.

The major donors of business houses easily get access to political parties and senior ministers. This influences the policies of the government. It matters who is in the room. Multi-billion-dollar industries are the ones whose profits influence the regulations that the government makes. There is no evidence for the breach of Ministerial code of conduct, yet there were declared donations that were made. The biggest donations were made by Investment firm Cormack Foundation $4.54m, Shop assistants union $1.35 m, Mining magnet Paul marks $1.3 m. 

Around 60% meeting is done with private business interests by senior ministers. In this manner business influence government and the policies that are made in the country. This shows that the country’s politics and policies of the government are dominated by the big business that requires change. Transparency is one step that should be taken and the government should work towards the overall benefit of the country.

O’ Neill, M. (2018, September 28). The influence game: How to access power in Australia. ABC News. Retrieved from https://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-09-24/lobbying-gifts-jobs-relationships-and-donations-affect-democracy/10282852?nw=0

Article

The influence game: How to access power in Australia

How do you get your foot in the door to see the people in power? Donations, freebies and jobs after politics seem to help.

By Margot O'Neill, ABC Investigations

Updated 28 Sep 2018, 1:14pm

In the past three years, nearly 70 per cent of federal ministers and shadow ministers have accepted corporate hospitality, which can be anything from a lavish lunch, to tickets to the AFL grand final, to airline lounge memberships.

More than a quarter of senior and assistant ministers took jobs with special interests after leaving politics.

And major business donors to political parties in government are more likely to get access to senior ministers.

Australian politics has a money problem," a new report from the Grattan Institute detailing these findings says.

"Who's in the room … matters for policy outcomes.

"Powerful groups have triumphed over the national interest in many recent debates."

The Grattan Institute report, Who's in the Room? Access and influence in Australian politics, found multi-billion-dollar industries whose profits can be heavily affected by government regulation, such as mining, property, gambling, finance and transport, seem to get the most meetings.

It supports calls for a new national integrity commission after comparing donations, ministerial access, lobbying and policy outcomes.

Politicians often get free air travel, free sporting and concert tickets or other gifts which they must declare.

Some 68 per cent of ministers and shadow ministers have declared corporate hospitality.

Some 52 ministers or shadow ministers were corporate guests at events, averaging four events each, while 25 took corporate-sponsored trips, averaging two each.

While politicians argue attending public events is an essential part of their job, the Grattan report said sponsored hospitality is another way well-resourced interests can get more access to decision makers.

"We aren't talking about corruption," Grattan Institute budget policy and institutional reform program director Danielle Wood said.

"There's no direct payment for a policy decision, it's more subtle.

It's about building relationships and a sense of reciprocity.

Jobs after politics

According to the Grattan report, a growing number of senior politicians take jobs with special interests after they leave Parliament — about 28 per cent since 1990 and rising.

There is no evidence any of the following politicians breached the Ministerial Code of Conduct.

None of the companies, organisations or former ministers listed below were required to register as lobbyists.

So which firms does the Grattan Institute say are among those which have benefited from former ministers' experience?

There are 500 registered lobbyists in Canberra who mainly represent private business, especially high-regulation industries.

Some 40 per cent of registered lobbyists are former government officials — and the number has been rising.

Enforcement of the lobbyist code of conduct is lax and its narrow definition excludes a whole lot of lobbying action, the Grattan Institute said.

Dark money flowing into politics

Declared donations of $43 million covering the last federal election (financial years 2015-2017) were highly concentrated — just 5 per cent of donors gave more than 50 per cent of all declared contributions.

Here are the top five donors:

  • Investment firm Cormack Foundation $4.54m (Liberal)

  • Then PM Malcolm Turnbull $1.75m (Liberal)

  • Shop assistants' union SDA $1.35m (Labor)

  • Mining magnate Paul Marks $1.3m (Liberal)

  • United Voice trade union $1.11m (Labor)

State and federal political parties also openly sell access to senior ministers at fundraising events, although individual payments for these events are rarely disclosed.

Some companies also buy annual memberships to Liberal and Labor business forums which provide high-level policy briefings and networking and can cost $110,000.

At least 40 per cent of money going into political party coffers — $154 million — was not publicly identifiable.

"Some of the hidden money will be from small donations and sausage sizzles and that's fine," Ms Wood said.

"But there's so much we don't know

Topic 5: Government and business relations in the USA and Europe

The bilateral relationship between the U.S. and Europe is the most successful one as per the commercial partnerships across the world. Citizens, companies and the workers reap considerable benefits by the strong commercial and strategic ties across the countries.

According to the article written by Garret workman on Driving the strong economic relationship between U.S. and Europe various transatlantic trade and investments benefits were discussed by the American and European leaders at Transatlantic Business works summit. Around $3.75 billion of goods and services were traded across the Atlantic each day and two-way trade between the countries support around $16 million high skilled jobs that are also paid highly. Half of the U.S. Company’s investment that is direct is bound for Europe and vice versa.

Even though the relations of the countries are close, there are risks from escalating tensions across the Atlantics. Yet the countries are focusing on the opportunities and continuing to boost growth and create a good amount of jobs in the country. They are also planning to enhance competitiveness through reinforced partnership. In the recent events of Brexit, the close working relations between the US and the European Union are essential. The government of the U.S is hoping to work and continue the business and strengthen it with the European Union and also with the United Kingdom.

The relation between Europe and the US are strong as depicted in the article. Trade is carried out in pace within the two countries and they are ready to overcome the challenges and continue strengthening their relationship.

Workman, G. (2019, April 12). Driving the Economic relationship Between the US and Europe. US Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved from https://www.uschamber.com/ 

Article

Driving the Strong Economic Relationship Between the U.S. and Europe


GARRETT WORKMAN

Director, European Affair

The relationship between the U.S. and Europe is the most successful bilateral commercial partnership in the world. Companies, workers, and citizens in both economies reap considerable benefits from the incredibly strong commercial and strategic ties across the Atlantic.

At the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s recent second annual Transatlantic Business Works Summit, American and European leaders from across business and government came together to discuss the tremendous benefits from transatlantic trade and investment. At the event, we launched our Transatlantic Economy 2019 report, which clearly demonstrates the positive impact that transatlantic investment and trade have in creating jobs across the U.S. and Europe.

More than $3.75 billion in goods and services are traded across the Atlantic each day, and two-way trade and investment supports more than 16 million high-skilled, high-paying jobs. Moreover, half of all U.S. companies’ direct investments abroad are bound for Europe – and vice versa. Moreover, the study shows that those companies which invest and succeed at home are also the most successful and innovative here at home.

While there are many benefits of our close ties, there are equally grave risks coming from escalating tensions across the Atlantic.

But the U.S. and Europe have many opportunities to overcome these tensions and continue to boost growth, foster the creation of good jobs, and enhance our competitiveness through a reinforced partnership. These opportunities include pursuing a positive bilateral trade agenda, jointly addressing our shared global challenges, promoting regulatory cooperation, advancing the digital economy, and more.

In light of the ongoing Brexit debate, it’s important to underline that close working relations between the U.S. and both the European Union and the United Kingdom are essential. The UK’s pending departure from the EU will require the U.S. and UK to reset the terms of our bilateral relationship. In no way does that alter or lessen the vital importance of continuing to strengthen the U.S.-EU relationship.

We look forward to working with businesses and governments on both sides of the Atlantic to build on our shared strengths in the weeks and months ahead.

Topic 7: Government and business relations in Asia- China and Japan

China and Japan are two countries whose economic corporation and bilateral relations have always been stringent. But, in the past few years, the countries have given signs of reviving the bilateral relations.

According to the article Economic relations with China in The Japan Times, a visit was made by Toshihiro Nikai, secretaries-general of Japan’s ruling party coalition to Xiamen, Fujian province in the last of December. In the visit both the officials issued a proposal for the project of China i.e. “One belt, One Road”. The initiative is for cross-continental investment in infrastructure.

Also, in the month of November both countries Prime minister decided to expedite the efforts in improving the ties for bilateral cooperation. The foreign minister of China has also at times expressed hope of better relations between the countries. The Japanese government in the wake of the following developments has declared to private companies that it will push the cooperation between China and Japan, The relations between the countries started to grow after the nationalization of Tokyo. These ties will benefit both countries. Japan should not ignore the growing weight of China is the business of the world. China has the world’s largest firm of the solar panel.

Still, the political relational between the countries stay strained because of an unresolved issue of Senkaku standoff. Yet, the countries are looking forward to bilateral ties and economic cooperation as they are about to enter the 40th year of Peace and friendship treaty. The increased cooperation between the countries will improve the economies and lead to development as these two countries are major business producer in Asia.

The Japan Times. (2018, Jan 6). Economic relations with China. The Japan Times. Retrieved from https://www.japantimes.co.jp/ 

Article

Economic relations with China

EDITORIAL

There are signs that economic cooperation between China and Japan, stagnant for the past several years amid frigid bilateral relations, is being revived.

One of the signs was a recent visit by the secretaries general of Japan’s ruling coalition parties — Toshihiro Nikai of the Liberal Democratic Party and Yoshihisa Inoue of Komeito — to Xiamen, Fujian province, in late December. There they met with Chinese Communist Party officials and issued a joint proposal that Japan and China seek out ways to cooperate on concrete projects under China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative for cross-continental infrastructure investment. The two countries should make serious efforts in both economic and political fields to remove obstacles that hamper the strengthening of mutual cooperation.

In November, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping agreed in their talks in Danang, Vietnam, to expedite efforts toward improving the bilateral ties. In his speech in Beijing last month, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who used to take a severe public stance on Japan, expressed hope that relations will soon return to normal so that friendship between the two countries will get back on track.

Following these developments, the Japanese government told private sector companies Dec. 15 that it will actively push cooperation between the business sectors of Japan and China in third countries, including other Asian nations. Specifically, it mentioned Japanese-Chinese cooperation in building infrastructure such as environmental protection projects, construction of industrial parks and physical distribution networks, including railways. Financial authorities in Tokyo and Beijing have also agreed on a framework for Japanese companies to issue yuan-denominated bonds in China.

These moves, especially the government’s promise to support private sector business cooperation, should facilitate Japanese firms promoting business activities jointly with Chinese partners. That will be a boon for Japanese firms, which had come to worry there may not be any room for them to take part in infrastructure construction in various countries as Chinese enterprises, since around 2016, have been pushing aggressively on building ports and other infrastructure not only in Southeast Asia but in Central Asia, the Middle East and Africa, on the strength of their financial muscle.

The economic relationship between Japan and China plummeted following Tokyo’s nationalization in 2012 of the Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, which touched off strong anti-Japan demonstrations in China. The amount of Japanese investments in China, which hit a peak that year, subsequently dropped sharply.

As bilateral ties continued to come under strain, Japan balked at taking part in the China-led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and in the One Belt, One Road initiative, which Xi is eagerly pushing. In recent months, the government gradually changed its attitude to the point that Abe indicated Japan is ready to cooperate with the One Belt, One Road project. Abe also made it clear that Japan may consider joining the AIIB under certain conditions.

Another factor that Japan must not ignore is the growing weight of China in the world of business. China has two gigantic IT firms that as of September each enjoyed aggregate market value larger than that of Toyota Motor Corp. It also has one of the world’s largest solar panel firms. Clearly the momentum of Chinese businesses on the world stage is getting ahead of Japan’s. Given this situation, it would be irrational for Japanese companies to shun Chinese businesses as they compete to win orders for infrastructure projects in the Asian market. They should instead cooperate with Chinese firms in ways that play to their own strengths.

Japanese businesses can also benefit from the fact that some Asian countries have become cautious about China-led infrastructure projects. Japanese companies participating in such projects can give these countries a sense of security.

Political relations between Japan and China remain strained — with the Senkaku standoff unresolved — even as they enter the 40th anniversary year of the Peace and Friendship Treaty of 1978. Economic cooperation should be pursued from a strategic viewpoint of helping to put bilateral ties back on track.

Topic 8: Government, Business and regulation

Government has a vast impact on the business of a country. There are policies and regulations that are formed and implemented that affects the functioning of the business in the country.

In the article, Regulations in 2020- New ways the government will affect your business by Wayne rash describes that the federal and state government has set into motion the new regulations that will impact the business. The three areas that are set includes privacy, security and 5G. For the factor of privacy, an act Consumer Privacy Act will come into effect. This act will help in changing the norms for privacy and provide better security for the consumers. Also, if any company tries to avoid the regulation then a penalty of 4% will be charged. Privacy and security go hand in hand.

This article also states that various carriers of 5G have been closed by the government due to excessive radiations. This depicts the actions of the government in the form of regulations will impact the business. Business is required to follow the rules and regulations that are created by the government. Otherwise, they have to face the consequences of the penalty on them

Rash, W. (2019). Regulation In 2020 – New Ways The Government Will Affect Your Business. Forbes Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/  

Article

Regulation In 2020 – New Ways The Government Will Affect Your Business

Federal and state governments, not to mention a series of agencies, all have new legislation and new rules that will affect how you do business in 2020. Some, like a new regulation from the Federal Communications Commission that will govern how much power a cell phone can emit, are fairly arcane. But others cover business as a whole and some include harsh new penalties for failing to meet requirements.

Get ready for a new 2020 business year.

Three of the areas where you will see new regulations are in privacy, security and in 5G communications. But there are plenty of new regulations outside of these areas that can affect you and your business. An example is the recently ratified Montreal Protocol, which governs how disruptive airline passengers are handled after a plane lands and the passenger is turned over to police.

Privacy

There’s a high likelihood that some sort of federal privacy law will pass in 2020, although it’s not clear in exactly what form. Currently submitted are bills based on California’s Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) passed in 2018 that will take effect on January 1, 2020. However the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is also serving as a model for some of the proposed legislation.

As one can imagine, having 50 state consumer privacy laws on the books will create a compliance nightmare for organizations of all sizes

Michael Magrath

Depending on the provisions of a successful bill, you may find that the EU’s penalty of 4 percent of gross revenue for violations becomes part of the law. Or you may find provisions for CEO jail time. And one version overrides California’s bill with provisions in a federal law.

Currently, the bill with the best chance of passage is a bipartisan effort that’s been introduced in the House Energy and Commerce Committee. A draft of this currently unnamed bill is being readied for future hearings.

Competing provisions in the Senate are currently stalled waiting for some consensus to form between Democrats and Republicans. Meanwhile, several other states in the US are working on their own privacy bills.

“As one can imagine, having 50 state consumer privacy laws on the books will create a compliance nightmare for organizations of all sizes,” said Michael Magrath, director of global regulations and standards for OneSpan. “There needs to be a comprehensive federal consumer privacy and data protection law to address the compliance issue and the legislation should also incorporate minimum security requirements for organizations to deploy to protect consumer data.”

While the various privacy bills are working their respective ways through Congress, there’s other privacy action elsewhere. Adam Kujawa, director of Malwarebytes Labs says that the growth of biometric tracking will also require a growth in demand for additional regulations. “The increased use of biometric data for authentication also calls for stronger regulations for data privacy, as consumers could be subject to bias,” he said.

“Multiple, varying data privacy laws is a thorn in the side for large companies, but devastating for SMBs,” said Chris DeRamus, CTO and founder of DivvyCloud.

Security

Privacy regulations will go hand in hand with new security regulations aimed at punishing company executives who don’t manage to find a way to protect user data against attacks by hackers. “Public perception of data breaches and use of personal data will cause reactionary legislation to pass,” said Randy Koch, CEO of ARM Insight. “These overly restrictive covenants will stall business growth, and will cause companies in those markets to be disadvantaged to global competitors who have access to less restricted data.”

Koch also predicted massive failures to comply with CCPA, much like the poor compliance with GDPR, especially with smaller companies.

Driving those security regulations are regulators’ frustration in dealing with last year’s Equifax breach which was caused by lax security practices and poor management.

New election security regulations will accompany the $425 million allocation passed by Congress just before Christmas. This funding, which will require 20 percent matching by the states, will be administered by the Election Assistance Commission.

“From compromised voting machines to fake news across the Internet and social media, the US voters will call into question the reliability of today’s voting process,” predicted Kujawa.

“However, we will also see the use of DeepFake technology for political purposes,” Kujawa added. DeepFake technology permits bad actors to create seemingly real videos putting people into fake situations. DeepFakes are frequently so good that they’re very difficult to tell from the real thing. “Regardless of the tactics for scamming, the real threat will be the attacks on our hearts and minds through social media and media manipulation.”

Because election security has now been classified as part of the US critical infrastructure, it’s likely that the US Department of Homeland Security will issue regulations regarding election security and protection of voting infrastructure.

“Due to foreign interference, the hacking of voter registration databases, and the exploitation of flaws in voting machines, there will be even more controversy and concern over the integrity of the 2020 election than there was in 2016,” said Anurag Kahol, CTO and co-founder of Bitglass. “However, this widespread concern should serve as a catalyst for change moving forward – even if it’s too late to make these changes for 2020.”

In a non-election year, the fight over data encryption would likely take center stage. Intelligence and law-enforcement agencies have been arguing for regulations that would require a means for those agencies to penetrate the encryption used by individuals and businesses to protect their privacy and their business data. Some of that encryption is required by other federal laws for the protection of personally identifiable information or health information.

It’s unclear whether any firm proposals will find their way into legislation before Congress in 2020 that would mandate access to encrypted data, but agencies will begin floating their proposals during the year. But a major breach of encrypted data could have long reaching effects.

5G

GETTY

While 5G communications is real, and while carriers are already building out their 5G networks, there’s also a battle around where and how those 5G radio signals are used. For example, several municipalities in California have already banned 5G cell sites because of radiation fears. Other localities have regulations about the siting of cell towers or cell sites. In some cases, even cell site with no visual impact are restricted.

The FCC is trying to issue regulations that would preempt those local regulations. In addition, the FCC is spending billions to support the spread of rural broadband which will be part of the 5G universe.

While it will take the rest of the decade for 5G to become ubiquitous, it will at least become widely available in 2020. “2020 will see significant 5G deployments across low, mid, and high bands; and many more devices released,” predicted Bob Everson, global director of mobility and 5G for Cisco.

“While consumers are having fun with the faster download speeds and richer offerings enabled by 5G, enterprises will move forward to leverage 5G connectivity as a strategic asset in their portfolio. This will begin with mobile users leveraging it for things like enhanced real-time collaboration plus WAN connectivity for branch offices and will rapidly expand beyond that,” Everson added.

Everson also predicted that 5G will be instrumental in extending health systems outside the hospital. However, such a expansion into healthcare is certain to be accompanied by a  new round of regulations covering the protection of the health information that such use necessarily contains.

One other thing is certain about the regulations coming in 2020 is that we will see new regulations that will affect your business that we currently have no idea will be coming. One way or the other, you will have to be ready for anything

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