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JUNE/JULY 2018

VANUATU

AusBiz.

The new Aussie business mag

RELAX INTO AN ADVENTURE Simply reeling

New Zealand & Australia’s fishing hotspots

The Merc X25od ute: Is it simply a Navara in disguise?

Crazy World Cup Moments

More shenanigans on the way soon!


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Welcome. ALLIANCE AIRLINES: COMMEMORATES SIR CHARLES KINGSFORD SMITH AND THE FIRST EVER TRANS-PACIFIC FLIGHT IN AVIATION HISTORY The 90th anniversary of Sir Charles Kingsford ‘Smithy’ Smith and the first ever trans-Pacific flight from Oakland, USA to Brisbane, Australia, is a historical event that is significant for the Alliance Airlines team. As the world’s largest owner and operator of Fokker aircraft, Alliance will celebrate the event with a commemorative flight on VH-FGB, a Fokker 100 which has unique livery dedicated to Smithy. The flight will depart on Saturday June 9, 2018, the same date as 90 years prior. Guests will fly to Wollongong to visit the Historical Aircraft Restoration Society (HARS) which has recently completed a replica of Smithy’s Southern Cross, a Fokker F.VIIb/3m Trimotor. The replica will be displayed alongside Alliance’s Fokker 100 VH-FGB, as a true celebration of Charles Kingsford Smith and aviation history in Australia. Guests will then return on the commemorative Fokker aircraft landing back in Brisbane and continue celebrations at Brisbane Airport, where the original aircraft flown by Sir Charles Kingsford Smith is now housed permanently. If you have an interest in aviation history, visit the HARS museum and take part in a range of aircraft tours, or you can visit the Kingsford Smith Memorial at Brisbane Airport. If you have any feedback about our flights or would like to share your images of Alliance Airlines aircraft email us at media@ allianceairlines.com.au.

EDITORIAL

Publisher: Michelle Hespe

publisher@publishingbychelle.com Editor: Katrina Holden editor@publishingbychelle.com Art Director: Jon Wolfgang Miller National Sales Manager: Robert Desgouttes advertising@publishingbychelle.com Lifestyle & Travel Sales Manager: Sonja Halstead sonja.halstead@publishingbychelle.com Sub Editors: Claire Hey, Sally Macmillan, Jessica Multari Editorial Assistant: Sarah Hinder

CONTRIBUTORS

Darren Baguley Kirsten Craze Ken Gargett Patrick Haddock Briar Jensen Ken Koerner Ian Lloyd Neubauer Ben Smithurst Ryan Watson

PRINTING

SOS Print + Media 65 Burrows Road, Alexandria, NSW, 2015 JUNE/JULY 2018

VANUATU

AusBiz.

The new Aussie business mag

RELAX INTO AN ADVENTURE Simply reeling

New Zealand & Australia’s fishing hotspots

The Merc X25od ute: Is it simply a Navara in disguise?

Crazy World Cup Moments

More shenanigans on the way soon!

Photo by David Kirkland/Vanuatu Tourism

Lee Schofield Chief Executive Officer Alliance is published by Publishing ByChelle (ABN: 78 621 375 853 ACN: 621 375 853) Suite 8, Level 8, 100 Walker Street North Sydney, NSW, 2060 (02) 9954 0349 publishingbychelle.com The reproduction of any content, in whole or part without prior written permission by the publisher, Michelle Hespe, is strictly prohibited. Opinions expressed in the content are those of the contributors, and not necessarily those of the publisher. All information in this magazine was believed to be correct at the time of publication, and all reasonable efforts have been made to contact copyright holders. Publishing ByChelle cannot accept unsolicited manuscripts or photographs. If such items are sent to the magazine, they will not be returned. We apologise if we don’t get back to your email, as we do receive a large volume of communication via various online channels. Some images used in Alliance are from istock and Getty images, and we make every effort to credit all contributors.

JUNE/JULY 2018

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Cover Story

We visit the private islands and friendly people of Vanuatu’s stunning archipelago.

In this issue. upfront

Features

11 Alliance News

24 Go Fish

Alliance extends its contract with BHP Billiton Iron Ore to supply dedicated charter flights; Paul Kelly to headline a charity event; Alliance provides charter flights for Tokyo-based JTB Corporation; guide for travelling safely with batteries and portable power packs.

Our adventure guide to the best fishing spots in Australia and New Zealand.

40 Fast Torque

Is the new Mercedes Benz luxury ute simply a Navara in disguise? We hit the

AusBiz.

roads to test it out, but you can be the judge!

44 World Cup Moments

Our recap of 10 of the most wild and shocking moments in Soccer World Cup history.

Interview with Jacob Nichaloff, Administration Assistant at Alliance.

16 Events

18 Entertainment

The latest films, books and music to inspire you.

BOOM AND BUST The economic cycles affecting property pricing in Australia’s mining towns. TRASH AND TREASURE The economic viability of reprocessing tailings from legacy mines. AGRIBUSINESS The truth about foreign ownership of Australia’s agricultural lands.

14 Meet the team

Line-up of national events during June and July.

Check out AusBiz. at the back of the magazine. In this edition, you’ll find:

24

INFRASTRUCTURE Developments changing our foreshores. FINANCE Tax tips from the CEO of Tribeca Financial.

JUNE/JULY 2018

5


PUBLISHER’S

I recently discovered fishing, and I’m quite obsessed with it. So one day while on holiday on beautiful Ratua Island in Vanuatu, I packed some prawns and a hand reel into my kayak and took off into the lagoon. The guys at the resort, all mad for fishing, ensured that my line was really tough, “in case of a big one.” I left my partner with binoculars and told him that if he could hear me screaming out and holding my hands wide, that I had a big fish and he should send help. I didn’t have a bucket or knife, so I’m not sure what I thought I was going to do with a big fish. And besides, my partner had his brother for company and beers on hand, so my plan was always destined for disaster. I was out 10 minutes when I felt a bite. I went to reel it in and found that whatever it was, was quite strong. I was far offshore but I could still see the resort. Then suddenly I had a really big pull by something far stronger. I could only guess that my first fish had just been gobbled by a bigger fish! The line went nuts and I lost a lot of length. That’s when my friend came kayaking towards me, asking if I was alright, as I was so far out. The great thing about Vanuatu is that there’s nothing dangerous in the sea, so I wasn’t scared of ending up in the drink. As my friend approached, I placed the oar across my lap to get a better grip on the reel, and my kayak took off. My friend shouted: “Where are you going? I came out to see you!” I pointed to the water as I was pulled along, the reel like a little steering wheel. “It’s a BIG fish! Get help! I’ll hold on!” She took off, paddling as quickly as she could towards shore. My fish proceeded to tow me out to sea, where the waters were choppy. I shouted and screamed out to my partner, “Big Fish! Biiiiig fish! Help!” Arms were flung wide, but to no avail. Beers, huh? I sat back and went with the fast, strong fish. Twenty minutes later I was down to a third of the 300-metre line and a speedboat was racing towards me driven by Sam, one of the staff. He took one look at the situation and understood. He pulled up and I handed him the reel and held the kayak next to the boat. “Woah! Big Fish!” he screamed. On shore a crowd had gathered, thinking I was in trouble. His mate called his mobile and he yelled down the line: “GT! Dogtooth tuna! BIG fish!” We were headed out to sea against the current and I tried to lift the kayak into the boat. The fish had one last burst of energy and took off. The rest of the line went with it and snapped. Ping! We both swore and pulled the kayak on board. “Big fish. He would’ve been tired soon too,” Sam said. He cursed, stamped his feet, and we both laughed again. “You didn’t let go!” he cried, and I smiled. But inside, I was gutted. My first big fish. Since returning home, I can’t stop dreaming of it — a missile of a tuna dragging me out to sea. I reckon he could’ve fed the entire local village. Dammit!

Michelle Hespe and the team at Publishing ByChelle

6

ALLIANCE MAGAZINE


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Route Map

Where we fly. Alliance Airlines is Australia’s leading air charter services operator. CHRISTMAS ISLAND G R O OT E EYLANDT

Private charter

Alliance Airline CAIRNS

TOWNSVILLE PORT HEDLAND K A R R AT H A

CANNINGTON

CAPE PRESTON ONSLOW ROCKHAMPTON GLADSTONE

KEY

CHRISTMAS ISLAND

BUNDABERG G R O OT E EYLANDT

Private charter flights

SUNSHINE COAST

MOOMBA

Alliance Airlines & Virgin Australia commercia BRISBANE

CAIRNS

TOWNSVILLE

PORT MACQUARIE

PORT HEDLAND K A R R AT H A

CANNINGTON

PERTH ONSLOW

NOTE: MAPS ARE NOT TO SCALE

CAPE PRESTON

SYDNEY ROCKHAMPTON GLADSTONE

ADELAIDE

BUNDABERG

SUNSHINE COAST

MOOMBA

BRISBANE

PORT MACQUARIE AUCKLAND

PERTH

SYDNEY

ADELAIDE

key

WELLINGTON

Private charter flights Alliance Airlines & Virgin Australia commercial flights

JUNE/JULY 2018

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GOING TO JAPAN? SIT BACK AND RELAX WITH JTB’S SMALL GROUP FULLY ESCORTED TOURS www.jtbtravel.com.au

Discover Japan 14 Day Land Only Prices

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11 Nov 2018

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25 Nov 2018

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12 May 2019

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Alliance News. Stay in the know with what’s happening with our airline and in our industry.

Contract Extension with BHP Iron Ore In April 2018, Alliance Airlines announced its contract extension to supply dedicated scheduled charter flights for BHP Billiton Iron Ore for a further 12 months. Lee Schofield, Alliance’s Chief Executive Officer, said, “This additional extension allows Alliance to continue to provide industry-leading service on flights between Perth and the BHP-owned and operated Barimunya and Coondewanna airports.” Alliance Airlines has been providing services to BHP Billiton since 2002 and considers this extension to be a great acknowledgement of Alliance’s ability to provide BHP Billiton safe and cost-effective services.

Commonwealth Games Alliance Airlines was proud to provide charter flights during the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. Our Fokker 100 transported basketball teams from England, Scotland, Jamaica and New Zealand between Townsville and Cairns. Here is the baton being passed on Horn Island, in front of our Fokker 70 VH-NKQ.

Passenger Feedback “I’d like to provide some feedback on your staff from Alliance flight VA1238 from Rockhampton to Brisbane as flown February 14. In particular, I’d like to call out Emily and Simone from this flight, who were just lovely to both myself and my husband. My husband has difficulty walking due to a knee reconstruction and even though he was fine to go down the stairs, they made sure that he was put in the lift and that someone could push him into the airport as I was unable to push the wheelchair myself.” Ann and Len JUNE/JULY 2018

11


Roxby Downs

RACING CLUB


Alliance News

Paul Kelly and Friends Charter

Paul Kelly will headline a special charity event in Dirranbandi, Queensland, on June 9, aimed at supporting rural Australians suffering from the lasting impact of ongoing, extreme drought. The concert will help raise funds for a program that connects youth to agriculture and building career pathways within the local community. For more information visit paulkellyandfriends.com .

Jacob Nichaloff

q&a

Position: Administration Assistant Location: Adelaide Briefly describe your role: As an administration assistant, my role is to support the Adelaide operations of Alliance Airlines. This includes safely and successfully delivering airport support services, administration duties, reservations, customer service and any other supply functions required.

JTB Partnership Takes Off The first of many private charter flights for Tokyo-based JTB Corporation (JTB) is scheduled to take off on June 1, 2018. With the Global Destination Campaign in full swing, Alliance and JTB are working towards a range of unique tours across Australia visiting special destinations in every state. The tours will range from oneday opportunities such as visiting Uluru to multi-day tours visiting major tourist attractions and cities throughout Australia.

Can you tell us about your background? Born and bred in Darwin, at 12 years old I went to boarding school at Scotch College in Adelaide. After I finished Year 12, I returned to Darwin but then realised how much I missed Adelaide and decided to come back. What do you feel has been your greatest achievement? My biggest achievement to date would have to be successfully completing my Alliance Airlines traineeship and receiving a Certificate III in Business and Administration. In

this role, I was also nominated and a finalist for the 2017 Aboriginal Learner of the Year award. Outside work, my greatest achievement would be releasing my debut extended playlist. It includes six songs that are available to stream on Spotify and iTunes. What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? I enjoy keeping fit and playing footy with my mates at the local football club. When I’m not at work, I enjoy writing lyrics and recording music. I’m currently working on a few songs that will be ready to release soon — stay tuned!

JUNE/JULY 2018

13


Alliance News

Batteries in the hot seat again If you are an observant occasional air traveller, you have probably noticed a new cabin safety briefing warning along the lines of ‘If you lose your mobile phone don’t move your seat’. What’s that about? It’s because lithium batteries, the type found in smartphones, computers and tablets, have once again topped the charts for the most problematic passenger item in Australian skies. Why? These types of batteries can spontaneously overheat and burst into flames. The main culprits are smartphones that can be accidentally crushed when you adjust your seat. So, if you drop your smartphone while flying don’t move your seat — instead, ask the cabin crew for assistance. The ‘least wanted’ dangerous goods list, released annually by the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA), highlights the top 10 most hazardous items air travellers pack in their

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ALLIANCE MAGAZINE

luggage and carry onboard domestic flights. In 2017 these were: 1 Lithium batteries 2 Items such as chainsaws with internal combustion engines 3 Flammable gas canisters and camping stoves 4 Lighters, lighter refills and matches 5 Ammunition 6 Fireworks, sparklers and party poppers 7 Non-flammable gas canisters as used in life jackets and bicycle tyre inflators 8 Aerosols and household sprays 9 Smart bags 10 Other non-lithium batteries Passengers packing these items in their luggage remain a constant threat to aviation safety, despite widespread warnings. All spare batteries not contained within equipment must be packed in carry-on luggage with their

terminals protected. There have been several examples of lithium batteries short-circuiting in checked-in luggage, causing cargo fires. Smart bags and ammunition made the list for the first time in 2017. Smart suitcases, which can charge mobile phones, weigh themselves, be tracked by GPS and act as a transport device for the weary traveller, are powered by lithium batteries and are a fire risk when packed in cargo holds. CASA has produced a Can I Pack That dangerous goods app, advising if an item can be packed in your checked-in luggage, carry-on luggage, or if prior permission from the airline is required to carry the item onboard. CASA has also created a Travelling Safely with Batteries and Portable Power Packs app outlining different safety issues. For more information visit the CASA website at casa.gov.au


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What's on. Our pick of the very best gigs, festivals, and cultural and sporting events from around the country.

June 2–4 Leonora Golden Gift

Leonora WA Coinciding with the Goldfields Cyclassic, this event is host to the Elite Mile race, Australia’s richest mile running race, which takes place along the main street of Leonora. As well as $50,000 up for grabs, the accompanying racing carnival features concerts, markets, fireworks and entertainment for all ages. leonoragoldengift.com

June 6–10

June 2–3 Goldfields Cyclassic

Kalgoorlie-Boulder, Menzies & Leonora WA This two-day, two-stage cycling race sees both professional and amateur riders race across the goldfields of Western Australia, from KalgoorlieBoulder to Menzies and on to Leonora. Offering $40,000 in prize money, the race is heralded ‘Australia’s Richest Handicap Cycle Race’. cyclassic.com.au

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ALLIANCE MAGAZINE

Cooly Rocks On

Gold Coast Qld It’s all vintage cars and rockabilly glamour at Australia’s largest rock ’n’ roll and nostalgia festival, celebrating everything there is to love about the 50s and 60s and, for the first time in 2018, the 70s, too! coolyrockson.com

June 9–11

McLaren Vale Sea & Vines Festival

Adelaide SA At this celebration of wine and regional produce, enjoy degustation dinners, winery

tours and tastings. This three-day event is one for the keen foodies. seaandvines.com.au

June 21–24

Brunette Races

Barkly Tablelands NT Now in its 108th year, this four-day celebration of country hospitality, amateur horse racing, campdrafting and rodeo is the biggest event of the Barkly Tablelands region. Novelty contests such as gymkhana for kids, barrel racing for adults and the rugged Battle of the Barkly ironman are fun for all. abcraces.com.au


Events Calender

July 1

JUly 21–22

Northern Territory Celebrating its 40th anniversary, this free, state-wide event honours everything great about living in the Northern Territory. The occasion will be marked with fireworks and entertainment across most communities, with major events held in Darwin, Katherine, Tennant Creek and Alice Springs. territoryday.nt.gov.au

Brisbane Qld Queensland’s premier food and wine festival, Regional Flavours features the best food, beer and wine of the Sunshine State. regionalflavours.com.au

Territory Day

July 6–15 Darwin Fringe Festival

Darwin NT With a mission to support emerging and experimental artists, Darwin Fringe is an openaccess festival dedicated to the development of the arts community. Expect an exciting lineup of around 70 individual events. darwinfringe.org.au

12–15 July Cloncurry Stockman’s Challenge Cloncurry Qld Regarded as one of the greatest horse events in Australia, the Cloncurry Stockman’s Challenge draws participants into a thrilling competition designed to display the horses’ athleticism, ability and trainability, while also exhibiting the riders’ horsemanship. currychallenge.com.au

July 5–18

Revelation Perth International Film Festival

Perth WA Australia’s leading independent film festival, Revelation will present more than 120 international films across Perth. revelationfilmfest.org

July 13–15

Cairns Indigenous Art Fair

Cairns Qld Designed to showcase the vibrant Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, CIAF is a not-for-profit celebration spread across three days of markets, workshops, insightful talks and performances. ciaf.com.au

Regional Flavours

July 27–August 5

Australian Festival of Chamber Music

Townsville Qld This internationally acclaimed event brings together the world’s finest chamber musicians in a series of 30 concerts and events, including performances on the beaches of Orpheus and Magnetic Islands. afcm.com.au

July 28

Australian Outback Marathon

Uluru-Kata Tjuta NT The Red Centre will host runners from across the country in this once-in-alifetime experience, open to all. If sprinting across the outback with views of Uluru appeals, there’s a choice of the six-kilometre or 11-kilometre fun run and walk, the half marathon and marathon. australianoutback marathon.com JUNE/JULY 2018

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Entertainment.

WORDS: Sarah hinder

series Picnic at Hanging Rock

First episode aired May 6, 2018, Drama Mini-series, Showcase channel, Foxtel & Foxtel On Demand Shot on location, this six-part mini-series is a reimagining of Joan Lindsay’s 1967 novel in which three schoolgirls and their governess mysteriously disappear on an excursion to Victoria’s Hanging Rock on Valentine’s Day in 1900. Like Peter Weir’s 1975 film, the new series — which stars Game of Thrones’ Natalie Dormer and a number of rising Aussie stars — is completely enthralling and haunting all at once.

ART VIVID Art After Hours at AGNSW

Art Gallery of NSW, May 30, June 6 & 14, 2018 VIVID Sydney will take over the Art Gallery of New South Wales for three exclusive nights of music, art and thought-provoking conversations about mortality, female sexuality and conflict. When your brain’s had enough, you can feast your eyes on this year’s Archibald Prize.

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ALLIANCE MAGAZINE

I hope you get this: Raquel Ormella

Shepparton Art Museum, May 26–August 12, 2018 This travelling exhibition explores themes of social and environmental activism, national identity, and human and animal relationships through installation, video, painting, drawing and experimental textiles. It will bring together new and recent works.


books

music

Revamp: Reimagining the Songs of Elton John & Bernie Taupin Rather His Own Man, Geoffrey Robertson

Released February 26, 2018, RRP$45.00/EBook $15.99, Knopf Australia, Autobiography. One of the world’s leading human rights lawyers, Australia’s Geoffrey Robertson’s memoir is deeply honest and equally entertaining, sharing tales from his days at school right through to his career in the courtroom. His stories are witty, candid and at times poignant

Australians on the Western Front 1918, David W. Cameron

Released February 26, 2018, RRP $34.99/EBook $14.99, Viking, History. This is a compelling account of victory on the Western Front during 1918. Historian David Cameron tells the extraordinary story of the Australian troops at Villers-Bretonneux, who were directly responsible for pushing back German advances, contributing to the Allies’ eventual victory.

In the Garden of the Fugitives, Ceridwen Dovey

Released February 26, 2018, RRP $32.99/EBook $13.99, Hamish Hamilton, Fiction. Emerging Australian author, Ceridwen Dovey’s new novel takes readers on a page-turning journey across ancient Pompeii and post-apartheid South Africa, exploring the obsessions of unrequited desire and how the power of the past can stifle our present.

TOUR Todrick Hall American: The Forbidden Tour

Adelaide June 10, Melbourne June 13, Sydney June 14, Brisbane June 16, 2018 If his 2017 sold-out tour Straight Outta Oz is anything to go by, Todrick Hall will have no problem getting bums on seats for his latest production. The singer, songwriter, dancer, choreographer, costume designer and director brings his newly curated world tour Down Under, with a new storyline, new songs and new costumes.

Out now (April 2018) Revamp is a carefully curated selection of Elton John and co-writer Bernie Taupin’s greatest hits reinterpreted by today’s biggest artists, including Ed Sheeran P!nk and Florence and the Machine.

Matchbook, Ian Moss

Release: June 1, 2018 After its first release in 1989, Matchbook, the debut album by Ian Moss, has hit the shelves again, this time as a limited edition white vinyl. As popular as ever, the former Cold Chisel guitarist will tour towns across both metro and regional Australia between June 22 and November 24, 2018. JUNE/JULY 2018

19


Regional News. Keep up with what’s happening across our communities. WORDS: Sarah Hinder and Katrina Holden

Construction of luxury hotels to transform Cairns A $500-million investment is set to transform the Cairns skyline with the construction of three new five-star international hotels, Riley, Bailey and Flynn, from Crystalbrook Collection. The company behind the investment, Crystalbrook Collection, headed by businessman and philanthropist Ghassan Aboud, will see the hotels add to their growing portfolio of luxury hotels and resorts across the region. “Cairns is a great city and on the doorstep of one of the great wonders of the

world,” Aboud said. “In the next five years, you will see it transformed. There have been no new five-star international hotels in Cairns for over 20 years.” With all construction set to be completed by early 2020, the three luxury hotels will open 800 new hotel rooms, create 3,500 jobs and are expected to boost the local economy by $900 million. Riley Resort will open November 2018, Bailey Hotel in mid-2019 and Flynn Hotel by early 2020.

Saving the reef The Australian Government has announced an investment of half a billion dollars towards the protection of the Great Barrier Reef, including a new $444 million partnership with the Great Barrier Reef Foundation. “The Great Barrier Reef Foundation welcomes this announcement of the biggest single investment in a coral reef ecosystem anywhere in the world,” said Dr John Schubert AO, chairman Great Barrier Reef Foundation. “There is no doubt that our great living treasure is under enormous threat from climate change and we must all work together to do everything possible to achieve the Paris Agreement.” Dr Schubert said there are many immediate actions that must be taken including improving water quality, addressing crownof-thorns-starfish outbreaks, monitoring and unlocking new insights that can restore the reef.

Fast Facts

2.1%

Cairns has experienced an annual average growth rate of 2.1% over the last 10 years. The estimated residential population was 164,536 as at 30 June, 2017.

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ALLIANCE MAGAZINE

A strong last quarter helped Cairns take out the top spot as the nation’s best performing hotel market for the fourth year in a row.

30 years

The Great Barrier Reef, the largest living structure on the planet, has lost up to half of its coral cover in the past 30 years due to coral bleaching and pollution.


CSF Industries is a leading supplier of steel fabrication and related solutions to major clients across Australia and South East Asia. As the only single source fabrication, coating, roofing, transportation and installation company in North Queensland, we cater for all your steel requirements. CSF Industries was established in 1979 and, for nearly 40 years, has demonstrated its ability and professionalism through the delivery of some of Queensland’s most iconic steel infrastructure projects. The company currently employs a highly skilled workforce of over 130 staff.

Tired of FIFO work? CSF Industries is seeking expressions of interest for multiple industry opportunities in North Queensland. To apply, please submit a resume to info@csfindustries.com.au

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Employment Opportunities Structural Engineers Project Managers Boilermakers Welders Riggers Crane Operators Draftspersons Blasters Painters Roofers

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csfindustries.com.au


Sip & Eat. There's so much going on in the hospitality industry around Australia. Here’s some fun to be had...

New way to cruise through Tasmanian wilderness A new vessel, Spirit of the Wild, from Gordon River Cruises has been launched to take visitors in the area on a Tasmanian journey that captures the spirit of the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area. Passengers can now experience this place like never before — from the fishing port of Strahan to the cool temperate rainforests on the banks of the river. The new vessel Spirit of the Wild will be the most environmentally sensitive vessel of its type in Australia. Its hybrid engines will allow the operators to cruise silently up the river, past ancient rainforests, providing guests with access to the area. Onboard, guests will hear tales of the piners, miners, fishermen and convicts who used to inhabit the area, and sample Tasmanian food and wine. www.gordonrivercruises.com.au

Tassie foodie tours

A new gourmet touring experience in Tasmania is being launched in June by Feast and Fossick. The company will offer two tours for gourmands — a two-day Hobart Fossick, and a two-day Bruny Fossick. Both tours feature premium Tasmanian food and wine experiences with the chance to explore Tasmania’s beautiful wilderness. Feast and Fossick Tasmania has been developed by Bruny Island Adventure Bay Retreat owner and operator, Jan Glover. The tours cater for small groups for up to 12 guests and are personally guided with introductions

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to the best local gourmet experiences in Hobart and Bruny Island, and adventure experiences such as sea kayaking and wilderness cruising. Guests can choose to experience the tours individually or combine the pair. Accommodation on the Hobart tour is at Macq 01 in Hobart and at Bruny Island at Adventure Bay Retreat. For a couple, single tour rates are $2,480 per person for either the Hobart or Bruny Fossick; or $3,880 per person for the combined Hobart and Bruny Fossick over four nights. feastfossicktasmania.com.au


Biota comes to Sydney In Sydney this winter, foodies will have a chance to try the award-winning cuisine from chef James Viles when he brings his Bowral restaurant Biota to inner-Sydney’s Chippendale for a four-week residency between 11 June until 7 July at The Old Clare Hotel. A 5-course casual menu will include a mix of snacks and individual and shared dishes. Extras such as whole salt and pepper mud crab with wild greens from Far North Queensland can be added to the menu. Biota sommelier Ben Shephard will oversee a cocktail list made with all Australian spirits and a select wine list. In early May Viles and a group of his chef mates headed to a property in Far North Queensland. Paul Carmichael (momofuku seiobo), Lennox Hastie (Firedoor), David Moyle (Longsong), Aaron Turner (Igni) and Beau Clugston (formerly of Le 6 Paul Bert and Noma) for a week of camping and cooking near the Gulf of Carpentaria. These chefs will also make cameo appearances during the Chippendale opening period, adding dishes to the menu on those evenings. Biota Chippendale will be open Wednesday to Thursday for dinner, and lunch and dinner Friday and Saturday. The five-course menu will be $110pp, with beverage pairing for $68pp. Book at biotachippendale.com

Blend your own Bundaberg Rum

The Bundaberg Rum Distillery, Australia’s most awarded rum distillery, now features a $8.5 million Visitor Experience. Visitors can craft their own personalised Bundaberg Rum blend. This one-ofa-kind Blend Your Own Rum Experience allows guests to spend time with expert rum blending guides, who will teach the art of tasting, blending and pouring rum straight from the barrel, the same way the Master Blenders of Bundaberg Rum have been doing for decades. Guests select their perfect blend from a range of exclusive, premium rums, and walk away from the experience with two 700mL personalised bottles they've handcrafted themselves. Visit bundabergrum.com.au/ distillery, or phone 07 4131 2999. JUNE/JULY 2018

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Want to explore new waters and drop a line for some serious fishing action? Australia and New Zealand offer some of the best fishing spots in the world. Here are our tips on where to go and the best operators to hook up with. WORDS: KEN GARGETT

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GO


Adventure travel

FISH A friend insists there are only two reasons to get up early: fishing and flights. For the dedicated angler keen to explore the world’s hotspots, combining the two has opened up new worlds. Chasing bonefish at Las Salinas in Cuba, tarpon in Costa Rica’s Rio Colorado, black bass in Papua New Guinea or arapaima in the wilds of the Amazon… everything is possible. Of course, you don’t need to travel far to indulge your habit. The choice of places available in Australia and New Zealand, by car or a short flight, is wonderfully diverse and seriously good. Few Australians are far from a creek or beach where they can toss a line, and many of the more serious ‘fishos’ among us will have favourite spots and make annual

pilgrimages to them. These are the blokes whose boats take up residence on the driveway because their garages are bulging with all the latest gear. They’re the type who understand that one rod is not enough when you can have 10, and the husbands who live in fear of their wives finding out how much their obsession actually costs. A lot of fishermen head off with mates, but a great many also enjoy time with family on these trips. It helps if the rest of the clan are keen to cast a line but, if not, most places have options for them, even if it’s only a little beach sunbathing. For those keen to expand their fishing horizons, here are a few top-notch options.  JUNE/JULY 2018

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FRASER ISLAND

THE REEF

More specifically, head out to the Great Barrier Reef for the trip of a lifetime. Swain Reefs, out from Gladstone and Rockhampton, is still very popular, although old-timers claim it’s not what it was — but then, what is? There are many charters available here and right up the coast. Hundreds of kilometres provide endless options, but first you need to work out which kind of fishing you’re into. Game fishing, saltwater fly, handlines on deep reefs to pick up some brilliant eating species? A mix? After a little research to pinpoint your preferred location, then it’s merely a case of selecting a charter that suits.

BEACHES OF SOUTH AUSTRALIA Friends in that state have long extolled the virtues of their fish and their fishing. If there is a South Australian alive who doesn’t insist that King George whiting are the world’s finest eating fish, I’m yet to meet them. There are plenty of options here, not least the Murray River and game fishing off Port Augusta, while beach fishing for jewfish is becoming increasingly popular. Hire a 4WD, head west past Ceduna and indulge yourself. Catches over a metre are not uncommon.

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For decades this has been Mecca for beach fishermen. June to September is prime time but there are fish all year. Tailor, flathead, whiting, jewfish (also called mulloway), bream and others rule, but there are some rocky outcrops — Indian Head and Waddy Point — where you can chase bigger species. We’re even seeing some enterprising anglers using drones to drop bait and lure out further than ever before. While others chase juvenile marlin on the northwest flats. There is no point coming here unprepared: the only way onto the Island is by ferry and once there you’ll need a four-wheel drive (most groups go with more than one since accidents are not uncommon — I sank my father’s Range Rover in the waves many years ago). You’ll also need to take all your equipment, food, bait — the lot. Most camp but check out the dedicated, selfcatering fishing lodges such as Waddy Lodge (waddylodge.com.au) 


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GO NORTH Barramundi top the bucket list for many fishermen, and there is nowhere better to catch them than North Queensland and the Northern Territory. Unless you are fully equipped and experienced, a stay at a specialised lodge is your best bet. As well as a straw poll, my friends stand by about one recommendation above all else: Dhipirri Lodge in Arnhem Land (dhipirribarra.com.au). In addition to the mighty barra, they offer reef fishing and even some mudcrabbing.

DABBLE FOR A DAY

Anyone keen to discover the thrills of saltwater fly fishing but not so keen on the Marco Polo-style expedition can fly into Brisbane, hire a car, drive an hour north to Mooloolaba, join guide Gavin Platz and delve into some of the most scintillating tuna fishing imaginable (tienfly.com). Now, there aren’t too many places on Earth where you can fly into a capital city and be among great fish in less than 90 minutes, so zip back to the airport and fly out that day, if you wish. Gav specialises in fly fishing for tuna, usually within sight of the coast — it’s great fun.

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Adventure travel

new zealand has a plethora of fishing options, But trout is the main drawcard here

CROSS THE DITCH From saltwater species to some serious salmon, New Zealand has a plethora of fishing options, but trout is the main drawcard here. For me, sight fishing for brown trout in the north of the South Island is close to as good as it gets — thrilling stuff in some of the most beautiful locations on Earth. Unless you are seriously good at spotting trout, and very few of us are, arrange a guide or stay somewhere like Owen River Lodge (owenriverlodge.co.nz), a favourite for many friends, or the smaller River Haven Lodge (riverhaven.co.nz), with well-known guide Scott Murray. My personal favourite, Lake Rotoroa Lodge (lakerotoroalodge. com), now caters only to conferences and groups. There’s also the option of contacting a few independent guides who’ll assist with your visit. I’ve fished with two of the best on a number of occasions and I can’t recommend them more highly: Greg Gardiner (flyfish4browntrout.co.nz) and Boris Cech (flyfishboris.com). These are the guys who’ll make your fishing dreams come true and give you the best chance of landing that trophy 10-pounder.

HEAD WEST If you’re looking for something a little more exotic, consider a trip up towards northern Western Australia to Exmouth, where saltwater fly fishing is becoming world-famous. Those who’ve tried casting a fly to a sedate trout have no idea how exciting this form of fishing can be (not that the sedate trout can’t put on a championship battle). Unless you’re kitted out with a suitable boat and gear — and especially knowledge — and have time to tow your boat a long way, use a guide. Friends who have fished here all swear by Jono Shales (exmouthflyfishing.com.au). This fly fishing isn’t for the faint-hearted, but there’s a great range of hard-fighting saltwater species to target here.

JUNE/JULY 2018

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N To Vanuatu is only a three-hour plane journey from Australia, and yet it feels completely off the grid. Words: Michelle Hespe

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Getaway

Opening spread: Aerial view of Ratua Island. Below: A giant sea turtle in the waters surrounding Ratua Island; Ratua Island villas are put together like an old village.

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P H O T O S : D AV I D K I R K L A N D

he sun is high, and I’m surrounded by dazzling shades of blue — an endless sky above a brilliant azure sea. I’m making gentle strokes with my oar as below my paddleboard a giant sea turtle glides effortlessly along, its golden-brown patchwork back glinting in the sun. I’m mesmerised by its enormous checked flippers gracefully sweeping through the blue, propelling it faster than I can go without ruining my perfect view of him. Old mate is half the length of my paddleboard, meaning he must be at least 80-years-old. Locals have told me that the giant sea turtles often outlive humans, sometimes reaching 100 years. The turtle dips down into what looks like a bed of lush seagrass — the perfect lunch — and disappears from my view. I hear shouting and look up to one of the guys from the resort, Sam, waving at me from a speedboat. He heads towards me, yelling out, “Are you okay?” I laugh and point into the water: “A huge turtle!” He’s smiling and shaking his head as he gets closer, and I realise how far out to sea I’ve gone, following my turtle and forgetting everything else. He pulls up beside me and I climb into the boat, then lift my paddleboard and oar in after me. “Oops, didn’t realise how far I’d gone.” He laughs and we head back to Ratua Island Resort & Spa which, from this distance, looks like a village from hundreds of years ago. Ratua Island is a dot on the map off Espiritu Santo, Vanuatu’s largest island, and finding it is like hitting the jackpot for lovers of marine life. Not only are there hundreds of turtles in the surrounding waters, the place is teeming with all sorts of wonderful fish — dogtooth, yellow and striped tuna; giant trevally; coral sea bass; rainbow runners; mahi-mahi; wahoo; mullet; sailfish; striped, black and blue marlin, and the list goes on and on and on. You can sit on any one of the resort’s many wooden decks and watch an epic show of fabulous fish antics; big ones rounding up little ones, fish leaping into the air as they attempt to escape their fate, and endless parades of massive schools — sometimes thousands swirling around right in front of the bungalows, all of the tiny details visible in the crystal-clear water. Fish aside, water babies can spend the long, balmy days at Ratua paddleboarding, kayaking, snorkelling, diving or, wait for it… riding horses in the water. Ratua is one of the few places in the world where you can ride a horse bareback through coconut plantations and then go for a swim in the ocean — still on the horse’s back. A 10-minute boat ride away across to the neighbouring island of Malo, you can take a dip in the calm, bright blue waters of the local blue hole. Canoe or kayak down the wide and wonder-filled waterways, jungle and coconut plantations sprawling in every direction, or be chauffeured in a tinny right down to where the river opens into a 

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stunning blue lagoon so astonishingly clear you can see right to the bottom. There’s nothing dangerous in the waters of Vanuatu (except for stonefish, so always wear reef shoes) so it’s a liberating experience being able to swim as far offshore as you like or into a blue hole, with no fear of anything larger than a person sharing the waters with you. Reef sharks sometimes make an elegant appearance, but they’re harmless. Ratua Island Resort & Spa is the creation of French billionaire, philanthropist and winemaker Marc Henon who, back in 2005, decided to turn the former 59-acre coconut plantation into an eco-resort that celebrates barefoot luxury. Henon dubbed it ‘primitive luxury’, and established the Ratua Foundation, a not-for-profit organisation that supports the local community. All profits made at Ratua are funnelled into improving the education and conditions of Vanuatu’s children, supplying them with books and clothes, and infrastructure, water and electricity for villages. What makes Ratua Island truly different is the accommodation itself. Henon purchased dozens of 200-year-old handcrafted teak Indonesian bungalows in Java and shipped them to Espiritu Santo. A barge transported the homes to the island, where they were reassembled as distinctive villages. The bungalows are meticulously decorated, and our villa for a family of five is more like a house than a resort suite. There’s a separate bungalow for the bathroom, with a shower, enormous stone bath and his-and-hers sinks crated from petrified wood; a front deck that overlooks the lagoon; verandahs down the side decked out with lounge

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Above, then clockwise: Magical sunsets from the dining area of Ratua Island Resort & Spa; Ratua’s accommodation overlooking the fishfilled azure waters; Resident goat, cheeky Sonny; Bare-back horseriding in the ocean, which is Ratua’s signature experience.


Getaway

FAST FACTs ni-vanuatu people were once cannibals. anthropologists agree that Vanuatu’s last recorded cannibal killing took place as recently as 1969. In 1839, the first two British missionaries to be dispatched from the London Missionary Society were promptly killed and eaten on Martyrs’ Island, now known as Erromango.

settings; and a master suite that comes with its own study and lounge room, a grand four-poster bed and wonderful finer details such as handmade silk cushions, a well-stocked minibar and all-important mosquito curtains for all beds. Overall the resort has a rustic, Robinson Crusoe feel to it, and the three largest villas reside in Fish Village, which has its own bar and restaurant with an enormous deck for fish-, turtle- and lagoon-viewing. The shared areas of the resort are equally luxurious. There’s a living space filled with lounges, cowhide rugs, countless antiques and memorabilia mixed in with jampacked bookshelves; a sweet little bungalow on stilts that

houses a movie theatre filled with six rows of old-fashioned red cinema seats and a choice of DVDs; and a games room with a pool table, large marble chessboard and a library of books and magazines. There’s a formal dining room, a picture-perfect pond loaded with goldfish and trimmed with beautiful wooden bridges, and seemingly endless ensembles of tables and chairs for dining along the beach, on the decks, under the trees and on the sand. Our favourite space from day one is a dining room in a treehouse perched above the ocean. One of the many highlights of Ratua, especially for little ones, is its resident goat. Sonny trots around like a happy dog, looking for pats and cuddles, greeting and farewelling  JUNE/JULY 2018

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Tamanu on the beach is The opposite of beautifully rustic Ratua, everything about it is fivestar, including the food.

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guests, even jumping aboard the boats to head out for a cruise or a fishing trip. The food at Ratua is organic and locally sourced, and every day the staff create a different menu of delicious meals. Some days we dined on fish and chicken curries, others on barbecued meat and freshly caught fish and garden salads with freshly picked herbs. Platters of pawpaw, apples, passionfruit and super-sweet pink and yellow grapefruit were available around the clock. One night we were treated to lobster caught from the sea around us. Sitting at wooden tables by the ocean, sand underfoot and the sea breeze keeping things cool, is enough to get anyone into the gentle rhythm of island life. No one in our party wanted to leave Ratua, but our last day rolled around and we said our goodbyes and hugged the staff who had become friends. Luckily, we had another few days on Efate, home to Vanuatu’s capital, Port Vila. A 30-minute bus ride through villages, paddocks and forests, passing by markets bustling with women selling fruit and vegetables and local art and craft, and we arrived at Tamanu on the Beach. It’s a recently renovated resort that is absolute waterfront, with a white-sand private beach, a beachfront chapel and Caribbean-style white-washed villas, the family ones fitted out with their own plunge pool and tropical gardens offering complete privacy and seclusion. The opposite of beautifully rustic Ratua, everything about Tamanu is five-star, including the food. It’s one of the best dining experiences in the Pacific Islands and the staff pride themselves on polished service. The wine and beer list is extensive and the panoramic views from the restaurant — through floor-to-ceiling glass cantina doors — are spectacular. Even breakfast is a decadent affair and the mixed juices are every bit as exciting as the cocktails of the day. Every evening for happy hour we plonked ourselves on beanbags to watch the sun go down, the last of the light shimmering on the reef break before us. On our final night in Vanuatu, we dined at the restaurant and requested one of the resort’s signature experiences: a beach bonfire. With cocktails in hand, and the kids shouting out “Cheers!” as they clinked their coconuts, we saluted Vanuatu for its wildlife, weather, food and friendly locals. We shared our favourite memories of its beaches, lagoons, blue holes and forests. Some other travellers joined us and we swapped stories of turtles and fishing, riding horses in the ocean and Sonny the goat’s antics. As the night sky filled up with stars, as if a child had thrown glitter into the universe, something we all agreed on is that Vanuatu is one of the most spellbinding places on this beautiful planet of ours. tamanuonthebeach.com ratua.com JUNE/JULY 2018

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From the Grapevine

HERE ARE FOUR SUSTAINABLY MADE WINES TO GET YOUR PALATE EXCITED. Pheasant’s Tears Mtsvane 2015

An American who makes wine using ancient practices in Georgia? Yes, and it’s delicious. Amber in colour and a little hazy, it smells of dried fruit skins, hints of herbs and is musky with impressions of apricot. The palate feels almost savoury with a textural, dry mouthfeel.

It’s only natural -

the rise of sustainable wines… Love it or not, natural or sustainable wines are very much here to stay. Not since the rise of Acid House music and club culture in the early ’90s has there been such a groundswell movement. What was seen as a fad has quietly maintained its momentum to the point where it’s now a lively part of the contemporary winescape. At a time when we think so comprehensively about what we eat, it’s only natural that what we pour down our throats is scrutinised, too. Why would we not want our wine to be organic or preservative-free the way our eggs, meat or vegetables are? Sustainable farming in winemaking is by no means new. Grown from a frustration with conservative winemaking — which often sees wines finished with additions, fining agents and too much sulphur at bottling — has prompted a generation of forward-thinking winemakers to eschew these practices for something more unconventional.

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words: patrick haddock

This can mean less adherence to convention in the vineyard, too: using less chemicals and herbicides, not spraying unless to preserve the vines, and instead allowing Mother Nature do her work. Using organics is a normal part of sustainable farming and some even use biodynamics, meaning they adhere to the lunar cycles to decide what days to spray and which days to pick their fruit. Ultimately it comes down to taste but there’s no doubting that sustainable viticulture will present a compelling argument in the glass, ensuring that your wine is as nature intended. When seeking out this type of wine, ask in a wine bar or bottle shop for a brand that has been made in a sustainable manner ­— that could be organic, biodynamic or preservativefree (including vegan). These wines may also be labelled 'amber' or 'orange', reflecting the colour change that occurs when a white wine comes in contact with the skins of grapes.

Passopiscaro Etna Rosso DOC 2014

From the volcanic soils of Mount Etna in Sicily, Italy, comes this energetic and electrifying red made from the variety Nerello Mascalese. Unfined and unfiltered, it appears in the glass a little wild with vibrant fruit and earthy tones. It's a benchmark for the region.

Swinging Bridge #003 2017

A fascinating trio of Riesling, Gewurztraminer and Pinot Gris combine in this drop from Orange, NSW, making it as refreshing as it is intriguing. Expect hints of Turkish delight on the nose with a scintillating texture and fresh, acidic finish.

Hungerford Hill Preservative-Free Shiraz 2017

Many people are pleased to find their wines are preservative-free but this wine is vegan, too. It enjoys bright fruit aromas of plum, berries and spices, with hints of dark chocolate and vanillin oak on the palate with a spicy finish and a clean acidity.


ROCK COTTAGE WINMARK WINES (formerly Pooles Rock) is a stunning property situated on 116 acres, with 28 acres covered by vineyards. Nestled into the property's bushland is Rock Cottage — a perfect getaway for exploring the Broke Fordwich region. The residence has three bedrooms, a stylish, cosy living area with a fireplace, and an adjoining kitchen and dining room. Rock Cottage offers privacy and spectacular views capturing the vineyard and mountain range, making it an ideal retreat. Rock Cottage | Winmark Wines 229 Wollombi Road, Broke NSW 2330 E: info@winmarkwines.com.au Ph: 0429 265 268


Fast Torque

FAST FACTS In Thailand, one-ton pickup trucks account for over 50 per cent of all vehicle sales — or more than 440,000 a year. At US$100,000 — equivalent to the price of a Mercedes S-Class — Ford’s F-450 Super Duty Limited 4X4 is the world’s priciest ute.

Specifications Price

$45,000 to $65,000 (est.)

Engines

2.3L 4-cylinder turbodiesel; 2.3L 4-cylinder twin-turbo-diesel

Power

120kW at 3750rpm; 140kW at 3750rpm

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Torque

403Nm at 15002500rpm; 450Nm at 1500-2500rpm

Transmission

6-speed manual or 7-speed auto, RWD or 4WD

Economy

7.9L/100km


y n n a c n U s s a l -C Fast Torque

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50d. 2 X e h t a ute: e d a coat? m h s s a o h p a in a -Benz r s a e v d a e N c Mer t just a i s I ? y rner Ken Koe But wh words:

Eight years ago, BMW announced it was building a ute based on its legendary performance car, the M3. This was an April Fool’s Day prank. “Under the strictest secrecy, the world’s first high-performance pickup has been created at the BMW M GmbH development centre,” they chortled. “This unique vehicle has already completed extensive test and set-up drives on the Nurburgring’s Nordschleife in advance of its global unveiling on 1 April 2011.” Ha. Germans. That famous Teutonic sense of humour gets you every time. Except… except that BMW actually, genuinely went and built one, proving that Germany is either very, very committed to the joke, or — more likely — that they have a fundamental misunderstanding of what jokes are. BMW’s pickup wasn’t, as the company had claimed, “the sportiest example by far in this vehicle category” — with an uncharacteristic lack of precision, it entirely missed the existence of Holden’s ute-lovin’ HSV performance division. But the Bavarians’ M3 frankenute did actually exist, albeit as a one-off, standalone model. It had the bones of a good April Fool’s gag, and an even better PR coup, because prestige German car brands simply

don’t ‘do’ utes. Or, at least, they didn’t in 2011. Even today, if BMW or Audi announced a pickup, it’d sound sillier than a lederhosen full of sauerkraut. But Mercedes is different. The world’s oldest, and best-selling, most enduring luxury automaker may have a pedigree second to none, but the brand with the three-pointed star also has a booming stable of commercial trade vehicles. It has always produced the slick and classy at the same time as the blue collar: working vans like the Vito and the Sprinter, oddball, ugly farm vehicles like the Unimog, and everything from light- to heavy-duty trucks. Mercedes is Jekyll and Hyde at once, if Jekyll was a thrusting corporate titan, and Hyde was a white-van man with pie crumbs on his King Gees. All of which gives the X-Class the perfect pedigree to create a prestige luxury ute. Even so, the top end of our domestic market — which Mercedes seeks to immediately gazump — is already a competitive field. Toyota’s HiLux is Australia’s best-selling car, Ford’s Ranger is outstanding, and VW’s delightfully specc-ed Amarok is already as slick as it is tough. They’re pricey, too. HiLux and Ranger easily breast the $60,000 mark at top spec; the most luxurious Amarok, with an even more  JUNE/JULY 2018

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The A.B.C. Amateur Race Club welcomes you to the 108th annual

Brunette Races Thursday 21st - Sunday 24th June 2018

Amateur Horse Racing (2 Race Days), Battle of the Barkly Ironman Challenge, Campdrafting, Gymkhana, Live Entertainment, Rodeo, and much more. Established 1910. It’s a Territory Tradition! A.B.C. Amateur Race Club, Brunette Downs Station, Northern Territory, Australia Phone: 0427102355 Email: info@abcraces.com.au Web: www.abcraces.com.au FB: www.facebook.com/abcraces


Fast Torque

polished interior, and a few extra kilowatts, unapologetically nudges $80,000. The X-Class is a vehicle that only Mercedes could build, but it isn’t entirely a Stuttgart creation. It’s based on Nissan’s Navara, its bones pilfered from the Spanish factory floor of its Japanese alliance partner. Mercedes made changes along the way, and they’re not simply cosmetic. An already durable ladder-frame chassis has been strengthened, and replaced both axles. The X-Class is a pinch wider than the donor Navara, with suspension that anchors differently to its frame. The Navara’s rear drum brakes simply wouldn’t do for Mercedes on its new tradie flagship, so they were traded for discs. Nor would the juddering, leaf spring suspension, customary in so many rivals, although handily for the Germans, their old Japanese Axis allies already kit out the Navara with more mannered coil springs at the back end. So far, so good. But utes, perhaps as much as any performance car, demand solid numbers. Pop the X-Class’s hood and you’ll discover two engine options at launch. Both are four-cylinder 2.3L jobs, and both are also pinched from Nissan, albeit with an engineering tickle that doesn’t actually pump its output figures. Base spec is a single-turbo engine with 120kW and 403Nm, with a stepup twin-turbo option that’s good for 140kw/450Nm. When a third variant, a Mercedes-sourced 3.0L turbo-diesel V6, arrives a few months down the track, its 190kW/550Nm output will make it the most powerful in class. Perhaps unsurprisingly, it’s style-wise where Merc has worked Nissan’s clay the hardest. There’s nothing wrong with a prestige marque requisitioning and/or sharing parts with less premium stablemates. The Volkswagen Group, for example, uses its A series platform for everything from the Audi TT to the VW

Tiguan to the Škoda Octavia and Spain’s SEAT Toledo. It’s a new level of polish that’s Mercedes’ real pickup selling point. Once upon a time, ute buyers weren’t given the option of even rudimentary bling. The thinking was simple and, in retrospect, very stupid: that tradies — or, at least, those not driving car-based utes — couldn’t be bothered with all those extras. Wrong. When the penny finally dropped, work utes got flasher, seemingly overnight. The X-Class’s promise is to step this up again, and it mostly delivers. It’s a refined ride, with good insulation from road and most wind noise, and Merc’s circular air vents emerging elegantly from a sculpted dash. The steering wheel is a cut above rivals’ offerings, and an 8.4-inch MMi screen hovers primly in the centre. There are a couple of disappointments, including no telescopic steering wheel adjustment and more hard, agricultural plastic about the cabin than you’d expect. If it’s to add durability, it makes sense, but it jars with the fine choices of dash trim (matte black, woodgrain, aluminium) and half-dozen seat options, including two in leather. And speaking of options, there’s no radar cruise control or Apple CarPlay/Android Auto. Overall it’s resolved and decisive, but will disappoint those hoping for a C-Class on stilts. Will that matter? Maybe a little. Mercedes knows the strength of its badge. And that larger, forthcoming engine will do a better job of hauling its considerable 2.3 tonnes about — although it has respectable shove already, with the twin-turbo reaching 100km/h in a not too bad 11.8 seconds. It’s a solid proposition that has an obvious niche: the super cashed-up tradie. Utes are big business in Australia, although in the world’s largest market, the US, the X-Class will look comparably tiny among the Yanks’ hulking coterie of Chevy Silverados, GMC Sierras and Ford F250s. But Mercedes rarely does anything so dramatic as enter an entirely new category without a solid business case. So whether or not the German sense of humour catches on, the X-Class will be here to stay. JUNE/JULY 2018

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10 for the ages

Ahead of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, we recap 10 of the wildest and most shocking moments ever to grace football’s greatest stage. words: Ben Smithurst

ALOISI SENDS THE SOCCEROOS TO THE WORLD CUP Sydney Olympic Stadium became a colossal and despised white elephant about 15 seconds after the 2000 Olympic flame was extinguished. But even the mangiest and palest pachyderm has its moments, and in 2005, John Aloisi provided one to match Cathy Freeman’s gold medal… and in front of 82,000 fans. At the final stage of qualification, after extra time in Homebush, it was a simple equation: Australia had to beat Uruguay in a penalty shoot-out — the crapshoot of world sport — to get

to Germany. Keeper Mark Schwarzer was the first hero, making two saves, before the handsome, slightly-sausage-gutted Aloisi stepped up the mark. A dozen years on, a YouTube rewatch can still bring tears to the eyes, as ‘Johnny A’ slots it home, then sets off, windmilling his shirt like a castaway who’s spotted a search plane. He made it threequarters of the way back up the pitch before his teammates swamped him. Hands down the greatest moment in the history of the Socceroos.


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‘THE BEAUTIFUL GAME’ THRILLS THE WORLD Brazil’s 1970 World Cup squad is the greatest football team in history. It included a chap called Edson Arantes do Nascimento, better known as Pelé (who’d win three World Cups all up) — the Player of the Tournament. Playing with trademark exuberance and spellbinding flair, Brazil won the final 4–1 against a brilliantly clinical Italy, but it was the way they won each game that stood out more than the result. “From their opening match against Czechoslovakia,” wrote football historian Garry Jenkins, “it was clear they were visitors from another footballing world.”

Sport

CAMEROON BEAT MARADONA’S CHAMPIONS, 1990 The World Cup has produced a handful of astonishing upsets since the USA knocked over England in 1950, but none has surpassed Cameroon’s victory over Argentina in 1990. With Maradona at the Argies’ helm, the African nation’s Lions Indomptables — a team of journeymen and French lower-division hoofers — were expected to be cannon fodder. But no. They came out fighting, with a violent and unsettling style, ending the game with just nine men, the win, and an unfathomably rabid following worldwide. “When they were finally knocked out a woman in Bangladesh committed suicide,” reported The Guardian, “writing that ‘the elimination of Cameroon means the end of my life’.”

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MARADONA’S ‘HAND OF GOD’ “I don’t believe in an interventionist God,” warbles Nick Cave in ‘Into My Arms’, a song that was never big in Argentina — maybe because they do. In 1986, England met Argentina in the World Cup quarterfinal in Mexico City. It was just four years after the Falklands War, yet spirits were convivial in the stands and on the pitch. Or, at least, to begin with. The Poms had a good team, but Argentina had the greatest footballer in the world. Nil–nil at halftime, the English tried thuggery to negate Diego Maradona, who got even by blatantly paddling a ball into the net with his left hand, then running off like he’d legally scored — which was, amazingly, enough for the officials. That Maradona, all-but deified among Los Gauchos, followed it up with the greatest World Cup goal of all time (now known, simply, as the ‘Goal of the Century’) eased England’s pain — a bit. 


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ZINEDINE ZIDANE’S HEADBUTT

“I prefer the wh*re that is your sister.” In the grand pantheon of insults, it leaves a little to be desired — slightly obtuse, and a little too wordy to be heard clearly in a packed stadium. Which might be why Italy’s Marco Materazzi had to repeat his slight three times to French captain/footballing great, Zinedine Zidane, with scores locked at 1–1 in extra time in the 2006 World Cup Final. “I tried not to listen to him but he repeated them several times,” said Zidane. “Sometimes words are harder than blows. When he said it for the third time, I reacted.” Zidane’s headbutt (to Materazzi’s chest) was a ripper. But his red card sent Les Blues packing.

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THE CRUYFF TURN

It was just a moment — the 23rd minute of a Group 3 game (Holland vs Sweden) in 1974 — but it’s still discussed today. Legendary Dutch ‘Total Football’ genius Johan Cruyff was in trouble, sort of: trapped, facing toward the sideline in the left-hand corner, a Swedish defender strapped to his back like a shrunken rucksack. And then, the Cruyff Turn. He feints with his right, utterly selling the dummy, then pivots and accelerates away, even as his opponent sprints off in the wrong direction — as helpless as if he were leaving the train station from the opposite platform.

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THE BATTLE OF SANTIAGO

Held in Chile, the 1962 World Cup finals were a brawl from start to finish, but Chile vs Italy was the epic high (low) point: a punchfest that required police intervention, four times. Chile won 2–0. The first foul occurred after 12 seconds; two players were sent off; others bashed their opponents with impunity. When replayed on UK TV two days later, the BBC prefaced the broadcast with a warning: “Good evening. The game you are about to see is the most stupid, appalling, disgusting and disgraceful exhibition of football in the history of the game.”


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BERGKAMP’S BLAST Dutch striker Dennis Bergkamp was a perfectionist like Charlie Manson was mad — a defining quality that couldn’t be eradicated by science or God. But it was three deft, consecutive touches in the 1998 quarter finals that have only ever satisfied him fully. He caught a long, long, long pinpoint pass ball on his right toe (precision!), a perfectly deceptive second touch (immaculate!) and a third-dab goal. “You never play the perfect game,” Bergkamp recalled, “but the moment itself was, I think, perfect.”

ANDRÉS ESCOBAR’S DEADLY OWN GOAL

Andrés Escobar — El Caballero del Futbol (‘the gentleman of football’) — was the captain of a gifted Colombian team at USA ‘94. They entered the tournament burdened by the expectations of a country being torn apart by a drug war triggered, ironically, by Pablo Escobar’s demise. The own-goal by Andrés against the USA was generally seen as a blameless affair apart from, it seemed, by the narcos. Returning home, he was executed — shot six times in the back in a Medellín club car park.

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THE MIRACLE OF BERN Before the 1954 final, Hungary hadn’t lost a game in four years. Their opponents, on the other hand, had no such history — and had spent a decade barely recovering from an even larger loss most still know as WWII. Down 2–0 after 10 minutes, West Germany staged the greatest comeback ever seen in a World Cup final, winning 3–2 in dramatic fashion. Budapest rioted. The Huns got their selfesteem back.


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NEWS+VIEWS | MINING | AGRIBUSINESS | INFRASTRUCTURE

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26 P.4 PROPERTY: BOOM AND BUST IN REGIONAL TOWNS P.10 MINING: TURNING TRASH TO TREASURE P.14 PROPERTY: REGIONAL HOTSPOTS P.22. AGRIBUSINESS: FOREIGN OWNERSHIP P.26 INFRASTRUCTURE: WATERFRONT DEVELOPMENTS P.32 EDUCATION


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Business News+Views

Business News+Views Bringing you the latest insights and analyses. WORDS: Sarah Hinder Stephen Hawking’s last predictions From an Artificial Intelligence (AI) apocalypse to nuclear war, Stephen Hawking, the theoretical physicist and genius who passed away in March, has left us with these alarming predictions.

Fireball

Global warming, over-reliance on fossil fuels and overpopulation all put our planet at risk. “By the year 2600, the world’s population would be standing shoulder to shoulder, and the electricity consumption would make the Earth glow red-hot,” he hypothesised.

AI

Hawking has warned of the dangers that self-aware AI will pose to

Imbalance between corporate gain and the average worker’s reward

Corporations are already reaping the overwhelming benefits of productivity and economic growth as a result of automation. The trend is predicted to make a $2.2 trillion boost to productivity between 2015 and 2030. There is a disturbing divergence, however, between this growing economic surplus and the average worker’s compensation. Research suggests the gap between productivity and wage compensation for the average worker has been larger since the 2000s than at any point in the postWorld War period, and the trend is expected to grow.

humanity. “This will be a new form of life that will outperform humans,” he predicted. In an interview with Wired magazine, Hawking forewarned, “We need to move forward on artificial intelligence development, but we also need to be mindful of its very real dangers.”

Extinction

Alarmingly, Hawking proposed that within the next 100 years, humans will either leave Earth to repopulate elsewhere in the universe, or face extinction. It was his belief that, unless we succeed in becoming a multi-planetary species, the human race is very likely to die out within the next century.

Housing market problems having significant increases in homelessness

The number of Australians experiencing homelessless has steadily increased over the past decade by 13.7 per cent since 2011, as measured by the 2016 Census. Groups experiencing the biggest increase in homelessness were overseas-born migrants aged over 65 and those living in New South Wales. A recent study from the Australian Housing and Urban Research Institute has found that changes to Australia’s housing system have played the most predominant role in rising homelessness across the nation. JUNE/JULY 2018

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Mining

Boom and bust HOUSING VALUES IN MINING TOWNS HAVE BEEN ON A PRECARIOUS RISE AND FALL TRAJECTORY IN RECENT YEARS AFTER THE COMMODITIES BOOM BOTTOMED OUT. NOW, THE UPWARD CYCLE HAS BEGUN. ILLUSTRATION BY: ANNA FARRELL

Kirsten Craze Kirsten Craze is a freelance journalist who has been writing about property in Australia and overseas for more than 15 years.

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Mining

Australia’s mining towns have ridden a rollercoaster ride of real-estate prices over the past decade. During that time some investors made a pile of cash as home values soared, while others dug themselves into a financial ditch when the market bottomed out. Today, however, the dust is settling after the rise and fall of the commodities boom, and many mining towns are bouncing back. Louis Christopher, founder of property data firm SQM Research, crunched the numbers on several resource-rich towns and, while he admits prices are on the mend, he says buyers should still enter the mining market at their own risk. “If they buy at the right time, then great, but for those who bought at the wrong time, they might as well have just gone down to the casino,” says Christopher. “You get extreme volatility, so people should keep that in mind. The good times are going to be fantastic and the bad times could be a nightmare,” he says. According to Ray

White Western Australia CEO Mark Whiteman, the bad dream is over for prices in the golden state. “There are definitely signs of improvement in the mining towns of Western Australia — that is evident by increased numbers of inquiries and better auction clearance rates in the Pilbara and Kimberley regions,” he says. “It appears that supply is being soaked up by additional demand, which should see things improve from what was certainly a very big correction. The market is certainly not back at boom proportions, but it is way better than the dire situation that it was,” Whiteman says. “My view on any market is that, provided people don’t get carried away at the peak and overcommit in any part of the market, then mining towns represent excellent buying opportunities right now.” Whiteman adds that, with property data showing a “flattening out” of the North West Shelf, prices are close to, or even at the bottom, of the cycle. “And that is universally known as the best time to buy,” he says. “We’ll see an improvement over the next 12 to 36 months as a number of mining companies are going through upgrade phases and are developing their facilities in some of these towns. I think the markets 

“The market is certainly not back at boom proportions, but it is way better than the dire situation that it was.” —

Mark Whiteman, Ray White Western Australian CEO.

JUNE/JULY 2018

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Mining

in the Kimberley, Karratha, Broome and Port Hedland are going to see significantly good times ahead,” he predicts. Sophia Keily of Jays Real Estate Mount Isa says the market in North Western Queensland also looks promising. “Mining is picking up, there’s no doubt about it. We’ve got more people back in town and the rentals are steadily picking up. We’re just coming out of a down cycle and it appears as if commodity prices are coming back up. The town’s prices are lagging, but the potential is looming again. It’s a good time for investors to get back in,” says Keily. Keily adds that, with limited accommodation in Mount Isa, landlords with well-presented property will always find tenants while the local copper and zinc mines are hiring. “We had about 10 years of zero to maybe one or two per cent vacancy. We even had those extreme situations where people were renting out their backyards as makeshift camp sites and any caravan was being used. It was so bad that people were homeless, but they were working homeless,” she says of the boom times. While property cycles in mining towns might be extreme, Keily says what goes up does come down, and vice versa. “People picked up places really cheaply in the low of 2004, and they caught that wave. I remember by 2012 a lot of those landlords wanted to capitalise, so sold up and made huge capital gains,” she says. “At that time, people who came to town for work were being forced to pay a lot for property that

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wasn’t being maintained, so they ended up buying very high, which was still better than paying high rents for something that was falling apart. “Where it all came unstuck is when those same people got put off as the mines retrenched in 2014 and 2015, and then had to sell. They’re the ones who got into trouble. But there were a lot who fixed up their homes, rented them out when they could, and waited. If they can wait they will get their money back, because every time we’ve had this cycle it’s always come back. It’s all about timing.”

Karratha

Population: 15,828 (Census 2016) Current gross rental yield: 12.5 per cent (houses) and 8.95 per cent (units) At the height of the inflated market between 2011 and 2012, the main caravan park in Karratha was charging up to $2,400 a week — but today a van is as little as $85 a night. At the peak of the mining boom, Karratha had a vacancy rate of about 0.4 per cent according to SQM Research. 


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Mining Those rates then rose during the downturn to 7.5 per cent in April 2015. Between late 2015 and now, vacancies have been trending down, and by early 2018 were sitting at 2.5 per cent. The median weekly rent peaked in July 2012 at $1,700 a week for houses and $1,100 a week for units. By January 2017, rents finally bottomed out at $450 a week for houses and $300 a week for units. Today, rents are now climbing again, with the median house rent sitting at $495 a week, while units have picked up to $333 a week as at April 2018. Sales in the town saw a huge rise and fall during the same timeframe. At its peak, the median house price in Karratha reached $870,000 — with some homes selling for more than $1 million — and units hit a median of $600,000. The market began falling in 2012 through to 2017, finally bottoming out at a median house price of $300,000 and a median unit price of $127,000. By the first half of 2018, the median house price got to $390,000, with units yet to move.

Port Hedland

Population: 13,828 (Census 2016) Current gross rental yield: 8.25 per cent (dwellings) In the height of the boom, there was 0.2 per cent vacancy in Port Hedland according to SQM numbers. That then skyrocketed in the downturn to a high point of 7.5 per cent. Now on a downturn since late 2016, the local vacancy is sitting at about 2.6 per cent. Weekly rents for a house in Port Hedland soared to $2,800, with units at $1,400. But then by the bottom they were sitting at $600 a week for houses and $350 a week for units. Port Hedland rents are on an upward swing in 2018 and are sitting at $800 a week for houses and $400 a week for units. When the market was booming in WA, Port Hedland prices were skyrocketing. In 2012, the median house price reached a whopping $1.6 million, but by 2017 it bottomed out at $525,000. At the same time units hit their peak at $810,000, but then began to fall. Units in Port Hedland were at $264,000 by early 2018.

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Mount Isa

Population: 32,588 (Census 2016) Current gross rental yield: 6 per cent (dwellings) Similar to Port Hedland and Karratha, vacancy rates were tight during the mining boom, getting as low as 0.3 per cent in October 2012. They peaked at 6 per cent by December 2014 and have slowly fallen since to 2.5 per cent this year. House rents in Mount Isa reached $600 a week in the boom, while units were at $480 a week. The bottom finally came in late 2016 when rents for houses fell to $350 and units were $200 a week. SQM data shows that the median house price hit a high of $495,000 in December 2012, then gradually fell to $325,000 by mid-2017. They climbed to $330,000 in early 2018. Meanwhile units peaked in mid-2013 at $410,000, then bottomed out in October 2017 at $250,000, and have inched back up this year to $295,000.

Roxby Downs

Population: 3,884 (Census 2016) Current gross rental yield: 6 per cent (dwellings) Resource-rich towns in South Australia have also been along for the ride. Roxby Downs, a purpose-built town that services the Olympic Dam uranium and copper mine site, has been on one of those property price waves. Vacancy rates sat at around zero in March 2012, then hit a dramatic peak in June 2016 of 17 per cent. Since then vacancies have fallen, and, by September 2017, were back down to 0.8 per cent. They are now slightly up 2.5 per cent. At their height weekly rents for a house reached $520 in August 2012, then dramatically dropped to $190 a week in January 2017. Now they are on the rise again to $377 a week. The few units in Roxby Downs did peak at the same time as houses at $350 a week, then bottomed in April 2016 at $160 a week. Now, local units have climbed to $310 a week. In October 2012 the median house price in Roxby Downs was $470,000, but fell to $310,000 by June 2017. That was up by early 2018 to $339,000. Similary, units peaked at $377,000, then slumped to $192,000 and have increased to $220,000.


Darren Baguley An agriculture, tech, mining, energy and business specialist.

Trash to treasure AS HIGH-GRADE DEPOSITS BECOME HARDER TO FIND, REPROCESSING TAILINGS FROM LEGACY MINES BECOMES ECONOMICALLY VIABLE AS MINING COMPANIES GO BACK TO THE FUTURE. For thousands of years the process of prospectors working in remote areas, under harsh conditions, to find an ore deposit, develop the mine and extract the resource has fired the imagination. There can be no denying there’s a romance to this progression. However, it invariably misses out the final phase — the inevitable closure of the mine when the finite resource has been extracted, processed and turned into the products of our comfortable industrial world. While there are mines, such as Potosi in Bolivia, that were opened hundreds of years ago, most have a life span of 30 to 50 years. New technology and a new way of viewing mining waste, however, are changing perceptions as to what is the end of a mine’s productive life. All mines generate waste. There is the overburden, rock that overlies the ore seam or mineral body, and tailings, the material

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Fast Fact

80%

Mined since the 1500s, and the source of Spain’s wealth at that time, the Cerro Rico de Potosí is the world's largest silver deposit. In the early years the ore grade was as high as 40 per cent silver.

remaining after ore has been processed and the valuable fraction separated out. The amount of tailings can be large depending on the metal or mineral being mined and the purity of the ore or mineral body. During extraction, the ore is ground into fine particles. Tailings are usually stored near the mine site itself and present challenges when it comes to rehabilitating the mine site at the end of its life: acid mine drainage, alkaline drainage and fine particles loaded with toxic substances such as lead. Mine site rehabilitation is expensive and it’s often the taxpayer picking up the bill. There are about 60,000 unrehabilitated mine sites in Australia, which represents a considerable burden that could be minimised if mining companies, government and the public see these ‘waste’ materials as potential resources. According to Anita Parbhakar-Fox, the Senior Research Fellow — Minimising Geoenvironmental Risks Transforming the Mining Value Chain — an ARC Industrial Transformation Research Hub at the University of Tasmania, tailings dumps could be part of a new mining boom as there is vast potential for these massive piles of waste to be re-mined. Not only are the tailings from some older mines the equivalent of economic grade with modern processing methods, but changing demand for metals means there are also desirable elements contained within the waste. “If we’re looking at historical, legacy sites, the sites that had quite high grade in the first place would be the sites to prioritise if a mining company was chasing the same commodity,” says Parbhakar-Fox. “Take, for example, Western Tasmania mining around Zeehan and Queenstown started in the early 1900s and as mineral processing technology has changed,


Mining review

what was once waste material would now be considered as economic grade. “The other thing to consider is the accessory metals you might have in some of the assemblages that are associated with those high-grade deposits. When we look at some of the mine waste material from Western Tasmania, we may be looking for lead, silver and base metals but we actually find there is quite a nice accessory of critical metals. For example we’ve had a bit of success with finding indium and cobalt. So, looking at those mine wastes a bit more broadly and seeing if there is a metal or mineral that is in demand now can certainly improve the potential revenue companies can generate from reprocessing these materials.” According to Parbhakar-Fox, the Old Tailings Dam, a site at Savage River on the west coast of Tasmania, has pyriterich waste from mining activities between 1967 and 1982 containing 38 million tonnes of material. While rehabilitation measures such as vegetating the site or flooding the area have been deemed technically too difficult, studies by Parbhakar-Fox found that the tailings contained as much as 3 per cent cobalt, a metal priced at US$81,000/tonne at the time of writing. She adds that by using bacterial oxidation, a greener process developed to release gold from pyritic rocks, much of the cobalt could be recovered. The Baal Gammon mine near Herberton in northern

Queensland produced copper, tin and silver for more than 70 years, but acid drainage from the site’s tailings has contaminated the waste near Jamie Creek and Walsh River. Analysis by Parbhakar-Fox’s team of shows it contains high levels of tin and indium that could be recovered using modern processing technology. “Reprocessing the waste would also remove the sulphides that are causing the acid drainage and threatening local waterways,” she adds. At its most basic, the way companies reprocess their waste depends on the metal or mineral being extracted and the grade of the parent material. “Operational mines need to take their waste material and treat it the same way they treat ore characterisation, understanding where the metals are sited, and start using appropriate metallurgical techniques,” says Parbhakar-Fox. A good example of a company doing this is the Ernest Henry Mine, a copper and gold mining operation in northwest Queensland. The mine began commercial production in March 1998 and it has undertaken good work in terms of reprocessing its tailings. “They’ve gone back to their tailings dams and dredged the material there. They’re chasing magnetite so it’s quite easy for them to put the material through magnetic separation and recover it much the same way they treat their ore,” says Parbhakar-Fox. Cobalt and indium are ‘hot’ elements right now because  JUNE/JULY 2018

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Mining review

they’re used in electronic gadgets the world currently has an insatiable thirst for, and a similarly in-demand element, lithium, is being recovered from waste in Western Australia. Over the past two years Lithium Australia (ASX: LIT) has developed its patented SiLeach® lithium processing technology that promises to produce lithium at very low cost and can also process ores that were up until now regarded as waste material. According to a report by RM Research, “[Lithium Australia’s] flagship lithium processing technology, SiLeach® is a halogenbased lithium processing technology which eliminates the expensive roasting step used in conventional lithium processing. SiLeach® is able to treat all lithium silicates including micas and low-spec and contaminated spodumene concentrates that are currently being disposed as waste from mining operations. Conventional processes can only recover lithium. SiLeach® efficiently digests and recovers all metals from the minerals processed and has the capacity of recovering valuable by-products which conventional processing is unable to do.” While reprocessing of mine waste is far less destructive to the environment than building a new mine, Parbhakar-Fox says that it can still be controversial. “When you consider the cultural aspect, the different land uses involved, [reprocessing] can be quite tricky. In Zeehan, we’re working on the infamous slag dump as another project. We’ve worked out where the zinc is residing, and we can improve the metallurgy of the recovery of that zinc, but it’s an area of cultural significance. “It sounds simple to say you should remove all this because it would remove a risk. We know it’s generating dust and contributing to the low pH waters with the slag pile sitting right next to a tailings repository all of which is impacting Austral Creek, which has a pH of 1.7.” Despite the logic, a company that was reprocessing the slag in 2011 struck opposition from locals who saw it as destroying history. “It’s a hurdle that isn’t always obvious when you’re thinking about minerals and dollars and things,” sums up Parbhakar-Fox.

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Fast Facts

40,000

The oldest continuing mining operation in the world may be the Wilgie Mia ochre mine in Western Australia’s Weld Ranges. Archaeologists believe excavation began 40,000 years ago.

Gold

South Australia's integrated metallurgical plant at Olympic Dam mine is able to process copper, uranium, silver and gold.

While high grade deposits continue to be found, the reality is that mining companies worldwide are chasing lower grade deposits across all commodities. According to ParbhakarFox, the logic of reprocessing legacy waste and further processing waste as it is produced is undeniable, but more research is needed. “Any decision that needs to be made in the area of reprocessing or rehabilitation needs to be based on good solid mineralogy. A lot of decisions can be made by looking at element signatures, but unless you understand where those elements were actually sited mineralogically then you can’t make a good decision in terms of the site. Developing techniques that can predict, characterise or capture mineralogy more cost effectively in the field is quite critical, as it can potentially transform the mining value chain. If we don’t do things like that, then we’ll continue to make mistakes."


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Property

On the money THERE’S MONEY TO BE MADE FOR INVESTORS IN REGIONAL MARKETS WHEN IN THE PROPERTY GAME FOR THE LONG RUN. HERE, WE LOOK AT THE AUSTRALIAN REGIONS OFFERING THE BEST INVESTMENT POTENTIALS

Kirsten Craze Kirsten Craze is a freelance journalist who has been writing about property in Australia and overseas for more than 15 years.

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One of the great real-estate myths is that only cities are home to big returns. But savvy investors know the real story. Sure, Sydney and Melbourne have multi-million-dollar price tags and have seen impressive annual growth, but high entry costs and mammoth mortgages mean many investors just can’t play the field. However, switched-on investors who have stepped into regional markets are finding there is money to be made when playing the long game. Dr Diaswati Mardiasmo, National Research Manager for PRD Nationwide, says there are plenty of regional hotspots where prices are affordable and gains are strong. “There’s a lot of potential in regional areas. Many people just think about Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, or within an hour’s drive of those places — they don’t think about regional areas and their investment potential,” she says. Mardiasmo recently released PRD Nationwide’s annual Ready Set Go Regional Report that analyses which Local Council Areas show property investment promise.


Property

The comprehensive report takes into account affordability, property price trends, investment potential, future development and the local unemployment rate. “We also made sure the LGAs we chose had a median price below the average state loan. For example, in NSW the average state loan for the December 2017 quarter was $476,449, while in Victoria it was $410,000 and in Queensland $338,000,” she says. The LGAs highlighted also had positive 12-month price growth, a rental yield on par with, or higher than, the nearest capital city, and rental vacancy rates on par with, or lower than, the capitals. “I have talked to so many investors who are hung up on two things: median price and percentage growth. People tend to look at it from a 12-month perspective, whereas if I was going to look at it from a growth perspective, I would look at the five- or even 10-year average. “Investors get enamoured by the idea of cheap prices and rental yields, but some haven't even heard of vacancy rates before. You need to know what they are, because you need them to be as low as possible." True property hotspots, Mardiasmo says, need to have solid future development prospects. “Without a high level of development, that level of price growth will not be sustained five or seven years down the track. There are people out who will want to flip properties in 12 months or so but, to me, property is still a long-term gain.” The PRD report concentrates on the Eastern Seaboard as these populated states have been most struggling with affordability.

New South Wales

Fast Facts

$1.17m While Sydney’s median house price sits at $1.1795 million, Melbourne’s is $821,000 and Brisbane’s is $530,000.

$769,051 The weighted average house price in Australia’s capital cities is $769,051.

The Ready Set Go Regional Report tipped Tamworth, Goulburn Mulwaree, Orange and Wagga Wagga local councils as hotspots. Tamworth is home to around 60,000 people and has a local initiative in place to hit 100,000 by 2030. The median house price as at April 2018 was $340,000, with a rental yield of 4.9 per cent and a vacancy rate of 2.3 per cent. With approximately $131 million of development planned for the region, the area 400 kilometres north-west of Sydney is looking pretty good to investors. “People ask me what the major industry is in Tamworth and the answer, which is our strength, is that we don’t have one. We’ve got lots of contributors, so that protects the local economy from the boom and bust cycle that can happen in some other regional places,” says Dean Cummins, founder of PRD Nationwide Tamworth. “People see just how well priced our properties are and you can get a pretty good return. You can achieve a 6 per cent return pretty easily or even better,” he says. Cummins, whose office manages 1,800 properties, said his current vacancy rate is sitting at a very low two per cent, with homes renting out in just 2 weeks on the market. Also pegged as a hotspot, Goulburn’s median house price was $420,000, while there are returns of 3.4 per cent, with vacancies at just 1.7 per cent. The Orange median house price was $387,000, while the yield was 3.8 per cent, with vacancies also at 1.7 per cent. In Wagga Wagga, the median sat at $345,000 and the yield was 5.5 per cent, with the vacant rate at 2.8 per cent.  JUNE/JULY 2018

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Property

Queensland For Queensland the regional councils of the Whitsundays and Southern Downs, as well as Ipswich and Toowoomba, were highlighted as solid investment spots. In Toowoomba, which is 125 kilometres west of Brisbane and home to approximately 160,779 people, the median house price was $380,000, while rental yields were sitting at 4.7 per cent and the vacancy rate at 2.7 per cent. With almost $2 billion worth of development given the green light in the greater Toowoomba region, local agents have reason to sing its praises. “We have a steady growth rate and low vacancy, and obviously you get a lot more bang for your buck in Toowoomba than you do in any of the capitals. You’ve also got a much better rate of return,” says Simone Files, cofounder of Blackbird and Finch, a real-estate business based

in Toowoomba. Files says despite an oversupply of units in the area in recent years that has since corrected itself, houses are hot property and there is no shortage of tenants. “As soon as a property goes up for rent, it generally only takes about two weeks to get it leased. But we don’t have very many for rent — we’d dearly love some more,” she says. Other promising areas in the Sunshine State include the Whitsundays region, where the house price median was $375,000, the rental yield was 4.5 per cent and the vacancy rate 1.6 per cent. Further south and Ipswich’s median is $347,500, while the local rental yield was 4.8 per cent, with vacancies at 2.9 per cent. In the Southern Downs the median house price was $280,000, with a yield at 4.6 per cent and vacancy at 1.6 per cent. 

JUNE/JULY 2018

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Property

Victoria In Victoria the Ready Set Go report pinpointed the Mitchell, Bass Coast and Moorabool shire councils. Moorabool Shire Council has a population of around 32,000, a median house price of $433,750, a yield of 4.1 per cent and a very low vacancy of 0.8 per cent. There is approximately $40 million worth of investment set to be pumped into the local area in the short term, so values are looking up. Matthew Edwards, senior country and lifestyle consultant at PRD Nationwide Ballarat, sells in the Moorabool Shire to a number of Melbourne-based investors keen to cash in on the high growth in the Moorabool region. With a median house price of $410,000, the Mitchell region had a rental yield of 4.6 per cent and a vacancy rate of only 0.6 per cent.

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AusBiz.

“We manage close to 1,600 properties and a lot of our investors are coming out of the city looking for affordability and good returns,” says Edwards. “We also have a lot of cranky tenants at the moment because they’re missing out — it’s pretty competitive. Every time we have a rental open, there’s a big line.” “With a vacancy rate that low, you’ve got less risk of waiting for a tenant and you can start getting returns quicker. And not only are you likely to get a tenant quicker, the growth seems to be better year on year,” he adds. Along the Bass Coast the median house price sat at $395,000, with a 4.5 per cent yield and 2.3 per cent vacancy, while the Mitchell Shire Council has a median house price of $410,000, with yields at 4.6 per cent and vacancies incredibly low at 0.6 per cent.


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Mining Recruitment Special

Work with the best in mining OreWin is an independent mining consultancy based in Adelaide. Our key areas of consulting expertise are geology and mining engineering, but the day-to-day work our consultants undertake can vary widely depending on the nature of the active projects and our client’s requirements. OreWin’s core business is the preparation of studies — the deliverable is generally a technical report describing the analyses that we carry out and the parameters used and results obtained. In going about our work, we always aim to provide targeted advice to each client to help maximise the benefit of their specific project. We provide whole-of-project analysis, from mineral resources and ore reserves, through to economic analysis. Sometimes we may be commissioned to prepare just a part of the analysis, but to ensure we provide value to our client, we will still need to understand how the part fits the whole. Typical work that our consultants

might undertake includes: Geologists • Drillhole planning • Geological interpretation • Statistical and geostatistical analysis • Resource estimation • Resource classification and reporting under several jurisdictions Mining engineers • Mine optimisation and design • Production scheduling • Cost estimation • Reserve reporting • Economic analysis options and sensitivities. OreWin's consultants may be tasked to provide input into any aspect of a study, depending on their core discipline and their level of experience. We work on projects in Australia and around the world. In the last 12 months we have worked on projects located in South Australia, Queensland, Canada, the Democratic Republic of Congo,

Mexico, Mongolia, South Africa and Turkey. Most of the work is carried out in OreWin’s Adelaide office, with visits to sites and client offices to collect data and present results as required. To keep up with the growth of our business, OreWin is looking for full time senior and principal consultants for Adelaide-based roles. We need people that have the skills and outlook to complement our existing team of consultants; people who can think independently, who can look critically at the data and are able to understand and explain what needs to be done and what results mean. This generally requires high technical proficiency and good communication skills. We are a consultancy in which our people understand accountability and take pride in their work. If you are interested in the type of work we do and think that you have what it takes to become a member of our team, contact us on the OreWin careers link found at orewin.com JUNE/JULY 2018

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Agribusiness

Whose land is it anyway? THE OWNERSHIP OF AGRICULTURAL LAND IN AUSTRALIA HAS BEEN A HOT TOPIC FOR MORE THAN 200 YEARS AND RECENT PURCHASES BY CHINESE COMPANIES HAVE REIGNITED THE DEBATE.

Darren Baguley An agriculture, tech, mining, energy and business specialist.

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AusBiz.

Arguments about foreign investment and ownership of Australian agricultural land are almost as old as white settlement. With a large land mass and sparse population, the costs of developing vast plains west of the Blue Mountains couldn't be borne by the fledgling colony so development of Crown land leases was financed by Britain. For the next 150 years, foreign investment in Australian agriculture was an issue that bubbled to the surface of Australian politics at intervals. Few politicians, except those on the extreme left, challenged the high level of British investment in Australian agriculture, but a burst of American investment in mining and agriculture in the 1960s provoked some disquiet. Overall, however, mainstream Australia seemed to accept that in a big country with a small population, some foreign investment was inevitable. In the early 2010s, however, the national debate surrounding foreign investment in Australian agriculture reared again. This time, however, the concern was not about British or American investment but Chinese. At first there were rumblings of discontent in rural electorates as people noticed that Chinese-owned corporations had bought up some large-scale agricultural properties. Everything changed in 2012, when the Foreign Investment Review Board (FIRB) approved the sale of Cubbie Station to Shandong Ruyi Scientific and Technology Group Co Ltd, a textile and garment company owned by Chinese and Japanese investors. Shandong initially bought 80 per cent of the Cubbie Group in consortium with the Lempriere Group, an Australian family-owned company with a 150-year history


Agribusiness

in wool trading and agricultural property management. Cubbie’s status as the largest irrigation property in the Southern Hemisphere attracted media coverage, which ensured the issue received major attention from the public and both sides of politics. Voters in electorates dominated by the National Party may have been the most vocal, but according to a 2012 Lowy Institute poll quoted by the Australian Farm Institute (AFI), 63 per cent of those surveyed were strongly against “the Australian government allowing foreign companies to buy Australian farmland to grow crops or farm livestock”. By 2016, it was up to 69 per cent. To allay public concern — and shore up National Party support — the Coalition went to the 2013 election with a promise to establish a register of foreign-owned farmland. The Foreign Ownership of Agricultural Land Register, managed by the Australian Tax Office, produces an update after the end of each financial year. Nevertheless, concerns remain. Not only does the system require individuals to self-register, the penalty for not doing so is $9,000. Another concern unrelated to the register is that the threshold of $15 million required for referral to the FIRB is too high. A further concern is the source of the investment. Cubbie Station may have been the first landmark agricultural property to be sold to a Chinese-owned company, but it certainly wasn’t the last. When the FY2017 findings from the Foreign Ownership of Agricultural Land Register were released at the end of September 2017, certain factions of the National Party, mainstream television, radio and newspapers worked themselves into a lather when it showed that Chinese

investment had increased tenfold over the previous year. Little mention was made regarding the agricultural land owned by British, American, Netherlands and Canadian companies and individuals. Independent-minded specialist agricultural publications and websites were quick to point out that the tenfold increase was accounted for by one single pastoral company — the sale of S. Kidman & Co to a consortium mainly comprised of Gina Rinehart and a Chinese company, Shanghai CRED. That sale added 7.8 million hectares of grazing country to ledger of Chinese interests alone. In addition, a further 1,390,095 hectares of Kimberley cattle country was acquired by Hong Kong billionaire property developer, Hui Wing Mau, when he bought the Yougawalla Pastoral Company. To further put foreign ownership in perspective, while the report showed that offshore investors owned 13.6 per cent of all Australian agricultural land, the AFI asserts that 99 per cent of Australian agricultural businesses are entirely Australian owned. Nevertheless, the AFI also noted that one of Australia’s largest superannuation fund managers has no investment exposure to Australian agriculture despite managing 10 per cent of Australia’s trillion-dollar-plus investment pool. To some extent, this simple fact supports the assertion made by proponents of foreign investment in the Australian agricultural sector — there is a massive gap between the capital available and the capital required domestically. According to the ANZ Bank, it’s about $850 billion; 

JUNE/JULY 2018

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Agribusiness

a figure that National Farmers Federation CEO, Tony Mahar, annualises to $9 billion; that’s $9 billion that could be spent developing Australia’s land that’s not being spent. While there is no doubt there are extensive agricultural properties all over Australia that could benefit from investment, for the extensive cattle properties of Northern Australia the calculation is simple. More investment means more fencing, more water points and more yards; other key infrastructure means beef producers can run more cattle on the land they have, which improves profitability. Foreign investors are often innovators as well. In 2015, Singaporean businessman Bruce Cheung bought Pardoo Station in the Pilbara for $13 million because he had been told there was a hitherto untapped underground river flowing beneath the 200,000-hectare station. After investing a further $20 million on 18 centre pivot irrigators across 840 hectares of pasture, Pardoo Station’s herd of Wagyu cattle are reaping the benefits of the Pilbara’s year-round growing season. What then are the disadvantages of foreign investment? And is Australia’s resistance to Chinese investment just a rerun of the 19th and 20th century’s fear of the ‘Yellow Peril’? While some sectors of the Australian community — One Nation supporters for example — may well be motivated by racism, the AFI has listed some legitimate concerns about foreign investment, some of which apply more to Chinese investors than others. For example, China’s agriculture is living on borrowed time. Production may be sky high now but that has come

from wholesale degradation of the country’s land and water resources, including over-extraction of the North China Plain’s fossil groundwater. As a result, Chinese companies have deliberately been buying up farmland all over the world. The concern is that the production of that farmland may be diverted when Chinese agricultural production begins to fall. Other concerns include sustainable management. The argument goes that foreigners who own the farmland but don’t live on it have no incentive to look after the land. While the environmental sustainability concern is not groundless, there are plenty of Australian-owned agricultural properties that are not being operated sustainably. As foreign investors usually buy high value properties, there is no incentive to degrade the asset base by running it unsustainably. The final concern is that of foreign workers. While Chineseowned farms in Africa have become ‘Little Chinas’ t­ here is little evidence that is happening in Australia. The reality is that Australia has strong labour laws that are usually enforced, and the harshness of the Australian environment also mitigates against wholesale importation of foreign workers. Despite the legitimate concerns, it’s clear that foreign investment in agricultural land is here to stay. It may be nice to think that Australia has the financial resources to develop its own farming land, but the reality is that the world is beginning to realise that Australian agriculture has many competitive advantages, not least being on the doorstep of Asia’s burgeoning middle class. Given this trend, it would be unusual if foreign investors weren’t keen to invest. JUNE/JULY 2018

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Infrastructure

Down by the boardwalk BEING ON THE WATER’S EDGE IS HIGHLY DESIRABLE FOR AUSSIE BUSINESSES. HERE WE EXPLORE SOME OF THE MOST SUCCESSFUL AUSTRALIAN WATERFRONT DEVELOPMENTS AND THE REASONS BEHIND THEIR SUCCESS — ALONG WITH FACTORS THAT SANK A FEW PROJECTS.

In 2016 Michelle Grand-Milkovic moved her successful restaurant love.fish from Sydney's inner west to a new 160-seat waterfront location at Barangaroo. A former container port and cruise ship terminal on the western fringe of the CBD, it’s been reinvented as a worldclass dining, retail, residential and business park, with gleaming waterfront towers, a new ferry terminal and a supersize promenade. “Making the move was a risk but a calculated one, because we knew we could strike a chord with the larger CBD audience the same way we did in the suburbs,” Grand-Milkovic says. “It paid off. The dining destination and community that's been built at Barangaroo is more than we could have hoped for. We now turnover more in one day than we used to in a week.” Grand-Milkovic is one of scores of Australians migrating to our bays, rivers, beaches and harbours to capitalise on the natural beauty of the waterfront. To meet the demand, government and developers are investing billions to dredge rivers, beautify old ports and build brand-new waterfront precincts that are changing the faces of our cities and towns. In this special feature, AusBiz. looks at some of Australia’s most successful waterfront developments and a few that have fallen below the waterline. We also explore the latest in waterfront architecture, innovative new finance models and the supercomplex environmental MICHELLE GRAND-MILOVIC WITH HER HUSBAND, considerations for building E X E C U T I V E C H E F, M I C H A E L M I L K O V I C on the water’s edge.

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AusBiz.

Ian Lloyd Neubauer With nearly 20 years’ journalism experience, Ian is abreast of global news as it happens.


Infrastructure

The stepped approach

Did You Know?

18m Barangaroo is projected to receive 18 million visits per year — 10 million more than Sydney’s iconic Circular Quay.

Twin

A new twin-tower project featuring Australia’s first-ever elevated hotel lobby is now being built at Perth’s Elizabeth Quay.

With Barangaroo, it appears Sydney’s politicians and planners finally recognised the full value of the city’s magical waterfront — not just in financial terms, but as a cultural and social asset that matters to the community. On completion in 2024, more than half of the 22-hectare site will have been relegated to public spaces. There will be a new amphitheatre, a park modelled after Bryant Park fronting New York’s Public Library, a walkway connecting to a new metro station, and a new boardwalk with sandstone steps leading into the water. “Successful models for waterfronts seem to involve partnerships between the public and private sectors, to create a series of active and passive precincts that provide something for all generations of residents and visitors alike,” Nicholas Brooke, Chairman of the Hong Kong Harbourfront Commission, tells AusBiz. “But at the end of the day, it all boils down to accessibility and getting people to the water.” Brooke and his team have also learned about the importance of limiting all buildings on the water’s edge in their continuing mission to beautify Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour. “A stepped approach is preferable as it reduces visual intrusion and creates a much more permeable waterfront,” he says. “In this context, Sydney is very much one of our role models. We’re very envious of what you've achieved.” Kim Dovey, Professor of Architecture and Urban Design at the University of Melbourne, agrees a stepped approach is critical. “In principle, you want as much density as possible close to the water’s edge as long as that doesn't damage the attraction. You want lots of activity close to the water with relatively small setbacks, but heights should then be stepped back to prevent overshadowing and wind effects,” he says. “The best examples of this in Melbourne is probably Southbank on the Yarra River,” says Dovey. “While the buildings are poorly designed, this is a highly active waterfront, with very good promenade design.”  JUNE/JULY 2018

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Infrastructure

Sustainability report

Perth has its own Barangaroo in Elizabeth Quay, a $2.5-billion project transforming 10 hectares of underutilised foreshore on the Swan River into a thriving recreational and commercial hub built around a newly excavated 2.7-hectare inlet. “Elizabeth Quay has literally changed the face of Perth,” says Vanessa Toncich of the Metropolitan Redevelopment Authority (MRA), overseeing the delivery of the 15-year project which, over the next decade, will include commercial, residential and hotel accommodation. “Retailers are registering record sale days: Gusto Gelato served up a tonne of ice-cream in one week over summer. Ferry patronage increased 300 per cent in the first few weeks after the precinct opened in 2016, and Deloitte Access Economics predicts it’ll attract up to 50 million people over the next decade.” Given the scale of inlet creation, the MRA went to extraordinary lengths to ensure a sufficient level of flushing to keep the water healthy. Silt curtains were installed to manage turbidity and suspended sediments in the water. A temporary limestone wall was built on the riverfront to shield the river from construction, and only biodegradable oils were used in machinery and tools. But only three months after Elizabeth Quay opened, the swim leg of a triathlon that was to take place in the inlet had to be cancelled after faecal coliforms were found in the water. The problem was caused by birdlife droppings following a big storm. But ecologists pointed out at the time that the MRA’s monthly water monitoring program was wholly inadequate and the inlet should be tested weekly, as the Swan River is, to identify flare-ups before they become an issue. There have been no further reports of contamination. However, the incident shows the infinite complexities of constructing — and managing — waterfront properties.

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AusBiz.

Show me the money

Mega-waterfront projects like Elizabeth Quay are usually underwritten by government and too big to fail. But the private sector in Australia has a spotted record navigating the financial roadblocks that are part of waterfront projects with multiple stakeholders. Hinchinbrook Harbour, a residential marina north of Townsville in Far North Queensland under construction since the mid-1990s, is a textbook example. Plagued by problems since the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2007–2008 and sucker-punched by Cyclone Yasi in 2011, the marina has sent two different management companies into administration. It’s also left dozens of small investors high and dry, including a resident who bought a two-bedroom apartment for $565,000 in 2007 only to sell it for less than $170,000 a decade later. Meanwhile, dodgy environmental planning has seen the marina filled with half a million cubic metres of mud, with crocodiles now trying to move into the seaside community. “It’s a crazy, complicated story. I’m learning more about it by the day,” says Nick Dametto, Member for Hinchinbrook. “Everyone has an opinion and/or a vested interest in the outcome.” Melbourne's $500-million Wyndham Harbour project was also hard hit by the GFC. However, Wyndham Harbour has become a case study in achieving innovative funding solutions for complex marinas. “We turned traditional marina funding strategies on their head by mapping a funding solution that saw the profit from the land development fund the marina delivery,” said Michael Kark, CEO of Monark Property Partners, a Wyndham Harbour financier since 2009. The masterplan was concurrently adjusted and scaled back. When Wyndham Harbour was launched in 2003, it comprised 500 finished homes. Version 2.0 has only 350 plots, all of which have finally been sold.


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Mining Technology Special

Position Partners welcomes Andrew Jones to the Monitoring Solutions Team Position Partners is pleased to announce that Andrew Jones has joined the company as the second Business Development Manager in the Monitoring Solutions Team. In his new role, Mr Jones will be responsible for the New South Wales and Southern regions. Mr Jones has built a 20-year career as a geologist in the mining industry and comes with an extensive array of operational experience both domestically and abroad. With a background in mines rescue and emergency services, Mr Jones is passionate about providing solutions contributing to the safe operation of projects. Whilst in Mount Isa, he gained experience in both underground and open cut mining processes whilst catering for challenging geotechnical conditions requiring various monitoring solutions. This included mining an open cut over a historic underground operation whilst needing to guarantee the structural integrity of nearby critical surface infrastructure. Mr Jones has since consulted throughout Asia, Africa and the Middle East to companies in a variety of commodities and extraction techniques. He also gained exposure to the civil engineering industry whilst consulting to quarrying and cement companies. Mr Jones holds a Bachelors Degree in Applied Science and a Masters in Mineral Economics. He has a strong appreciation in both the technical and commercial aspects of operating a project safely. Position Partners centralised Monitoring Solutions Team supports customers with tailored solutions for the civil, geospatial, mining and building industries. Position Partners offers two industry-leading monitoring solutions including Senceive, an innovative wireless platform and Topcon Delta, a comprehensive optical and GNSS-based system with advanced reporting and integrated communications technology. Mr Jones added: “I’m excited to be a part of the growing team at Position Partners and look forward to providing clients with solutions from the vast range of products we supply. I’m keen to draw on my varied operational experience to assist clients with their onsite strategies.” positionpartners.com.au JUNE/JULY 2018

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abbotsleigh.nsw.edu.au An Anglican Pre K-12 day and boarding school for girls

Board at Abbotsleigh Our specialty is country and regional NSW In Sydney? Come and visit us â&#x20AC;&#x201C; weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d love to show you around Please contact Colleen Fenn on 02 9473 7744 or registrar@abbotsleigh.nsw.edu.au We empower amazing girls to do amazing things


Education Special Feature Mining

Chooks away BY CARRIE KABLEAN

For most of us, eggs at Easter mean the chocolate variety, in all their sugary delight — but the girls at Abbotsleigh’s Ag Club have a different agenda. In the run-up to this year’s Sydney Royal Easter Show students were busy raising meat chickens, taking care of Light Sussex hens, and learning about egg and meat production. It was the first time the girls from Abbotsleigh, an Anglican girls' day and boarding school in Sydney’s north, had competed in the show. Three of the hens were entered in the Purebred Layers Competition, which involves selecting well-matched birds and putting together a project about husbandry and laying. Four students competed in the Junior Showmanship Schools division, presenting birds to a judging panel to demonstrate handling skills and breed knowledge. Others competed in the Steggles Meat Pairs Competition. These girls picked up their day-old chicks in February, 16 little 45 gram balls of fluff that would eventually bulk up to more than three kilograms each, during which time the students were required to track the growth and feed

consumption, document husbandry and calculate feed conversion efficiency. While some Abbotsleigh girls come from a rural background, that’s not true for all of them. So, how did the students do? In the Steggles Meat Pairs, their male meat birds placed second as a live bird pair, and they came fourth in the carcase competition; their Light Sussex hens placed third in the Purebred Layers. As the competitions drew entrants from 75 schools, the Ag Club girls were delighted to be placed. As for the Junior Showmanship, the four girls had no idea what to expect and were competing against Agriculture students! Nerve wracking, to say the least — and not just for the entrants. After the event, the girls’ teacher Susan Filan was sought out by one of the judges and shown how to properly handle a caged bird. “She was very helpful,” said Filan. “She thought the girls must have a bad Ag teacher! When she learned that we are a club with a Science teacher in charge, she took the time to help us out. Now that we know what happens in a competition, we look forward to improving next year.”

Want to know more? Visit www.abbotsleigh. nsw.edu.au | 02 9473 7777 JUNE/JULY 2018

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â&#x20AC;&#x153;We knew that Nudgee College could provide so many more opportunities. Not just in normal everyday education, but in a way that would expose Tom to new challenges, that could help him to grow into a young man who will leave an indelible footprint on his surrounding world.â&#x20AC;?


Education Special Feature

Guiding the next generation St Joseph’s Nudgee College has a rich history that dates back over 125 years, with a grand reputation built by successive generations of students, staff, parents and community members. Located only 16 kilometres from Brisbane, the College’s campus sits on 136 hectares of sprawling bushland and ovals. The founder of the College, Ambrose Treacy, recognised the need for a Catholic boarding school for rural Queensland in the 1880s, as boys from the region were sent to boarding schools located far away in New South Wales. To achieve his vision, Treacy raised money for the College and gathered boarding enrolments while travelling on horseback around regional Queensland. “We say that Nudgee College was originally built by funds from the bush, for boys of the bush,” says Principal Peter Fullagar. Since those early, humble beginnings,

the College has continued to grow from strength to strength throughout the years. Today Nudgee College has 1,300 day-school enrolments and 280 boarders. At Nudgee College, students are taught, cared for and challenged by teachers who want the best for each student. A focus on the holistic education, personal development and wellbeing of each student remains important for the college. Offering some of the best facilities in the country, Nudgee College has everything available to students on ‘one footprint’– modern, technologically advanced classrooms, an exceptional agricultural centre (that includes cattle yards), state-of-the-art science labs and a trade centre designed for vocational education learning areas. “In any one day, boys can move from one of our many Google classrooms, to the agricultural centre to tend to the on-site cattle, take a P.E class on our Olympic-grade athletics track, or perform on stage in our purpose-built 400-seat auditorium,” says Principal Fullagar. The most outstanding facility the College has to offer however – and one of their proudest achievements – is the newly redeveloped boarding village that

was completed in 2015. “The boarding community has been at the heart of the College since its founding, and is a valued and thriving facet of Nudgee College, with plenty of fantastic opportunities to further all aspects of a student’s development,” says Principal Fullagar. The Bathersby Boarding Village features spacious individual rooms, shared common areas for study and recreation and a large communal courtyard with eco-friendly design. It also offers a health centre staffed with skilled nurses, doctors and physiotherapists that are available 24/7 and a kitchen staffed with chefs that prepare nutritious, well-balanced meals. Boarders include students from all over Australia, the South Pacific and beyond. “Our focus in Nudgee College Boarding is to help boys to find and develop their strengths. We do this by creating a safe, supportive environment where boys have multiple resources and opportunities to cater for their interests,” says Principal Fullagar. “Ultimately at the end of their Nudgee College journey we hope that we have moulded an independent, empathetic, culturally aware young man who is able to fulfil his potential.” nudgee.com. JUNE/JULY 2018

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The Catholic residential college for university students in Adelaide, under the care of the Marists.

AQUINAS COLLEGE Now accepting 2019 applications.

(08) 8334 5000 www.aquinas.edu.au admin@aquinas.edu.au 1 Palmer Pl, North Adelaide SA 5006


Education Special Feature

Aquinas: giving uni students the edge Decades of experience in working with beginning university students from regional Australia has allowed Adelaide’s Aquinas College to develop both the expertise and support networks that foster success, both while they are studying and when they begin their professional careers. It’s all about people and culture according to College Rector, Brother Michael Green. “Aquinas is a like a great family,” says Brother Michael. “That’s what I hear from our students and alumni time and again.” “First, we go out of our way to create a genuine home for everyone, somewhere where they are known, feel safe and can belong. People matter to each other. No-one falls through the cracks.” “Second, as in any good family, everyone wants the best for one another,” he explains. “At Aquinas, that translates into such things as a comprehensive tutorial program, oneon-one mentoring, academic support, and career advice and opportunities from former Aquinians.” Student President, Eliza Boulton

from Mildura who is in her fourth year at Aquinas, points to the academic culture that pervades the College. “It’s cool to want to achieve highly at Aquinas — and we do,” she says. “Over 75 per cent of our students have a credit average or better, and over 35 per cent a distinction average or better. That’s way ahead of the bell-curve and doesn’t happen by accident.” Brennan Lockwood, a second-year resident from Mount Gambier, relishes the positive vibe that defines Aquinas. “People really do look out for each other,” says Brennan. “It’s a very people-oriented place. Right from day one I felt that I had made a smart choice.” “Just about all of us are from country areas or from interstate,” adds Brennan, “so we’re all in the same boat at the start. The seniors really helped us feel at home immediately. That’s in the Aquinas DNA.” Eliza describes Aquinas College as a super-active environment. “There’s always something on,” says Eliza. “Lots of social activity and fun, absolutely, and plenty of

sport and also opportunities for social outreach. We form great friendships and have epic times together. But everyone knows why they are here, and that’s to do well at university.” Brother Michael believes that for any young adult residential community to be a nurturing and safe environment then it needs to be unequivocal about its valuebase. “We’re confident at Aquinas that we’re in touch with what young people of the 21st century want and expect, things such as mutual respect, inclusion, intellectual honesty, choice, and critical engagement with the discourse of the times. That’s all consistent with the Marist educational tradition that underpins Aquinas. Our students have all that and they share it with good companions. “I think they are very fortunate to have both the opportunity and the support that they do.” aquinas.edu.au

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Tec-NQ’s Senior School serves a niche market in the boarding school arena. With an integrated focus on trade training, Tec-NQ is the market leader amongst boarding schools in establishing work placement and apprenticeship opportunities. Y10 Tec-PREP “Try-Every-Trade” JULY START. Y11 & Y12 JANUARY START. FULL TIME APPRENTICES – Start any time. Boarding available at the Townsville campus. Website: tecnq.com.au Virtual Tour: tecnq.com.au/school#virtual-tour Contact us today for more information on career focused pathways and apprenticeship opportunities.

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Finance

End of financial year tax time tips Tax time. Two words that bring a sense of dread to most people. If this includes you, read on. We’ve compiled our top tips to ensure smooth sailing this financial year.

Start early

If you’re after a stress-free tax return, the best thing you can do is stop procrastinating and lodge your return as early as possible. Get ahead of the ball this year by organising any statements for savings accounts or other investments in advance, as well as ensuring that you have your Pay As You Go (PAYG) Payment Summary or Group Certificate on hand. Having these prepared before you begin your tax return will save time and help you receive your tax refund sooner.

Become a boss at deductions

The thought of adding deductions when filing a tax return often seems like a hassle – but it doesn’t have to be. In fact, once you know what you can claim, the process becomes easy and it could end up saving you thousands. We’ve compiled a quick list of the top deductions that will help you dominate this financial year and put some of your hard-earned tax dollars back into your own pocket. • Mobile phones – Workers can claim the costs of their phone and internet expenses that are work-related. • Electricity – Many people take work home with them. If you don’t want to claim comprehensive home office expenses, you can still claim for electricity used when doing work at home. • Education – If you’re studying subjects related to your

Ryan Watson Tribeca Financial's CEO knows all about money management.

current paid employment, it’s tax-deductible after the first $250. You also can claim travel expenses for the cost of getting to and from your place of education. • Printer ink — There’s a pile of home office items that can be claimed including inks, stationery, printers, computers, chairs, desks, paper shredders and rubbish bins. • Bricks – The most lucrative potential tax deduction for property investors is not the carpets and curtains, but writing down the bricks and mortar. For most people it’s a 2.5 per cent annual tax deduction on the cost of the building – but not the land, which does not depreciate. For an investment property costing $300,000 to build, that’s a welcome $7,500 tax deduction every year. • Your income – If you pay income protection insurance premiums, make sure to claim them. It’s the only form of personal insurance that is tax-deductible.

Don’t be afraid to ask for help

An estimated 46 per cent of us spend three or more work hours per week thinking about our finances (PWC 2017 Employee Financial Wellness Survey), resulting in low financial wellness. Add on the stress of a tax return and it’s easy to see why so many of us become overwhelmed. Our financial wellness impacts all aspects of our lives — from our physical and mental health, right through to the relationships we have with our family and friends. So, if you need a little extra help filling out your return, don’t be afraid to ask for it. Accountants can take the hassle out of your tax return, leaving you to live your good life.

JUNE/JULY 2018

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Puzzles

CROSSWORD

A D O H G G M E O U Y D L

W N Y B O P Y Y B F O Y L

S O R O O R N M Y R C F W

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S R J W O K B S O L L D K

D O N A L D Y E A E I T L

R E N N U R D A O R W T E

SOLUTIONS:

A D O H G G M E O U Y D L

W N Y B O P Y Y B F O Y L

S O R O O R N M Y R C F W

P E R O R R N O D E E F I

O C R E C A T U O M E A N

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D O N A L D Y E A E I T L

R E N N U R D A O R W T E

SCOOBY-DOO SCROOGE TOM WILE E COYOTE

D Y G S F F E K O D O U U

T O M E T L M C C D T C B

F L L E Q E T I S S E K M

E I N N I M J M O T U L P

D Y G S F F E K O D O U U

FELIX FLINTSTONES FOGHORN JERRY JETSONS

X P F L I N T S T O N E S

T O M E T L M C C D T C B

MICKEY MOUSE MINNIE PLUTO ROAD RUNNER ROCKY

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E I N N I M J M O T U L P

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ALLIANCE Airlines is the largest operator and owner of Fokker aircraft in Australia, so is a provider of short- and long-term leasing of air...

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