Keeping children safe

STAY SAFE: Eglinton Public School captain Jane Sheather, vice captain Lachlan Taylor and kindergarten, Year 1 and Year 2 students with the Daniel Morcombe Foundation Big Red truck. Photo:CHRIS SEABROOK 102516cdaniel
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IN 2003, 13-year-old Daniel Morcombe was abductedfrom the side of the road as he waited for a bus.

He was later killed, his remains not found fornearly eight years.

His story is well-known throughout Australia and has spawned the Daniel Morcombe Foundation, which now aims toeducatechildren about personal safety through various school-run programs.

On Tuesday, Eglinton Public School was visited by the foundation’s Big Red truckin a joint-effort with the Australian Federal Police to continue spreading its message.

Assistant principal Ross James said child safety is a very important part of the curriculum at Eglinton Public School.

“It is important for every child to remain safe and ensure that while they are in our care they are safe,” he said.

The school has participated in Day for Daniel, held onOctober 28, for the past three years, but Tuesday was the first time the truckhad visited.

Educators from the truckwere keen to spread one vital message to students: recognise, react and report.

Students were told to trust their instincts in unusual situations and react accordingly.

“In a lot of situations about child safety, instincts tell us that if you don’t feel safe, you probably aren’t safe,” Mr James said.

Internet safety was another focal point of talks during the visit.

Studentswere told to protect their identities online, regularly changes passwords, restrict social media use until they’re over 13 years of age and never add someone they don’t knowas a friend on social media.

“It is one of our biggest concerns and I don’t think we are aware about how dangerous it can be,” Mr James said.

Eglinton Public School will participate in formal Day for Daniel activities on Friday.

Students will wear red to school in support of the day and talk about a specific child safety issue in classrooms, which will be shared at an assembly later in the day.

Mr James said the Daniel Morcombe Foundation has made addressing these issues with students easier thanks to itssupply of classroomresources.

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Funding boost for Wimmera schools

Seven Wimmera schools have received new state government funding for buildings. WIMMERAschools will be able to upgrade old buildings after the state government announced new money for maintenance.
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Seven Wimmera schools are among 400 schools to share in $40 million.

Hopetoun P-12 College will receive $246,000, Horsham Primary School will receive $166,000 andHorsham West and Haven Primary School will receive $60,000.

Dimboola Primary School will receive $47,000, Kaniva College $29,000, Apsley Primary School $13,000 and Beulah Primary School $5000.

Hopetoun P-12 College principal Tony Hand said he was ecstatic to learn about the money.

“We haven’t got the finer details yet about where exactly we can spend it, but it will certainly contribute to our refurbishment work in putting all the students onto one campus,” he said.

The collegemoved all of its students onto the senior school campus from the start of this year.

Previously there was about onekilometre between the junior and senior sites.“This money will allow us to now focus on some of the secondary school buildings and remove some old, decommissioned buildings,” Mr Hand said.

“We had plans in place for these buildings, but we weren’t expecting any money, so this willallowus to get our plans into action.”

Mr Handsaid merging the school’s two campuses had been a positive move.

“The transition of all students onto one campus has been exceptionally smooth, which is a credit to students, staff and the community,” he said.

Horsham Primary School principal Chris Walter said how the money would be spent was still to be decided.

“We are really pleased got some money and it is always very helpful to our school,” he said.

Education Minister James Merlino said the funding boost would allow more schools to replace or upgrade building that were in poor conditions.

“It’s important our teachers and students have the first-rate classrooms they deserve,” he said.

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Shire canoe club face a very Hawkesbury Halloween

Big day: Sutherland Shire Canoe Club members. Picture: SuppliedWhile you and your kids are out trick-or-treating this weekend, some of theShire’s fittest and fastest will be spending their Saturday night in a very differentway.
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Around 14 members of the Sutherland Shire Canoe Club have entered theannual Hawkesbury Canoe Classic, a 111km overnight paddle that raises fundsfor the Arrow Bone Marrow Transplant Foundation.

The Classic, now in its 40thyear, starts at Windsor and ends at Mooney MooneyBridge at Brooklyn, on the Hawkesbury River.

The paddlers will leave Windsor in groups between 3pm and 5pm on Saturdayafternoon, with the fastest taking around 8.5 hours to do the route, arriving inBrooklyn at around 2am. The average paddler will take 13 hours while theslowest will take 16-19 hours – and probably get to see the sun rise.

“A few of our paddlers – and about two-thirds of the entire field – have enteredwhat’s called ‘Brooklyn or Bust’ which is simply focused on finishing the eventrather than racing,” club presidentSteve Dawson said.

“The rest are racing classes divided by boat type, age, and gender. Personally I’drather finish fast because sitting for longer in a boat is physically worse thanworking harder.”

Among the club members hopeful of good results are Dawson and his wife,Kate, who are record holders from previous years, as well as fellow husband andwife team, Ross and Robyn Bingle. Other hot tips are Bob Turner and JasonCooper paddling together, and Kristy Benjamin.

Steve and Ross covered the distance last year in less than nine hours (8h:46m).Bob and Kristy have also posted sub-ninehour paddles previously. Others whohave competed before but not this year will be at the river as support crew.

All the club members who have entered have been training hard. Most haveclocked up 40-50km each weekend; the Dawsons have been doing 60-80km.

Many have been cross-training too, either running or cycling.While it might seem a punishing way to spend a weekend, Mr Dawson saidfinishing the 111km race comes with a real sense of achievement – and more.

“The event has a great atmosphere. Everybody encourages others as they passin the night. In last year’s race, where Ross and I were racing for a podiumposition, we were paddling alongside the other leaders, chatting and swappingstories for almost the entire race,” he said.

“When we came across a paddler in difficultly, all the lead boats stopped tocheck they were okay, even though we didn’t need to. When we knew they werealright, we all went off again together.

“The chatter stopped in the final two kilometres as everyone got down tobusiness. We finished third, two seconds behind the boat that came second.

“There are tough times, because it is such hard work. Between 40km and 60km isthe worst, while the final 30km is almost a relief. Crossing the line is ecstasy.”

Anyone wishing to make a donation to the cause can do so via the club’sEveryday Hero account.

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La Trobe University campuses to become futuristic mini-cities with Optus partnership

La Trobe vice-chancellor Professor John Dewar expects a five-fold increase in demand for cyber security employees in coming years. Photo: La Trobe University Optus business manager John Paitaridis says the firm will even hire graduates directly from the cyber security course at La Trobe University. Photo: Louise Kennerley
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Demand for skilled cyber security experts is expected to increase in coming years. Photo: Brian A Jackson

La Trobe University campuses and its students will be test beds for futuristic parking, safety and traffic technology, as part for an $8 million partnership with Optus.

The telco will also be involved in the new Sports Park and is a key partner is La Trobe’s new cyber security courses.

Both parties are tipping in about $4 million each and are hoping to discover major technological breakthroughs for future commercial use.

For  example, the new high-tech sports park at the Bundoora campus will be kitted out with WiFi, LTE mobile and network infrastructure to help with data collection and analytics for research in sport performance, rehabilitation and fan engagement. La Trobe already has partnerships with Melbourne City soccer club and Carlton Football Club.

There will be a five-fold increase in demand for cyber security employees in coming years, according to La Trobe’s vice-chancellor, John Dewar.

Optus and La Trobe will use the university’s campus in Bundoora to test technology and see if it can be commercialised. The relationship has a governance framework to help resolve any disputes over who owns the intellectual property for successful technology, Professor Dewar added.

“Our campus is like a large town,” Professor Dewar said. “The sort of technology that we will be working on with Optus will allow us to keep track of usage and monitor movements of people around the campus so we can optimise use of facilities.”

A new security app will quickly locate students who need help, he added.

From early 2017 La Trobe will start offering six-month, one-year, and two-year courses in cyber security.

Optus’ business manager, John Paitaridis, said it would work closely with students and graduates, even hiring graduates directly from the course.

“We know that there is a skills shortage world wide and here in Australia,” Mr Paitaridis said.

Earlier this year Optus partnered with Macquarie University – which sits across the road from Optus’ main offices in Sydney – to create the Optus Macquarie University Cyber Security Hub. This centre will start taking students in 2017.

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Country supermarkets in demand

The Hamilton IGA sold for around $3.2 million.An offshore buyer has swooped on Woodend’s 19th Hole shopping centre, paying nearly $18 million despite only 28 months remaining on a lease to anchor tenant Coles.
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The Chinese buyer was prepared to go higher than local syndicates and institutions put off by the Coles lease that expires in February 2019.

But that did not stop them from looking. Colliers International agent Tim McIntosh, who negotiated the deal with Tom Noonan, said there was a lot of interest in the centre, with more than 150 enquires fielded from investors.

“It all depends on how much risk people are willing to take on. There’s not that many opportunities in the market and on that basis they were looking at this asset,” Mr McIntosh said.

“As part of the sales process, we approached other supermarket groups to gauge their interest in back filling the space and we’re talking to a couple of groups.

The 8491 square metre shopping centre returns $1.48 million a year in rent from 18 specialty shops and a host of mini-majors including Mitre 10, Target Country and Ian Marks Liquor.

The deal reflected a yield of just over 8 per cent although it’s closer to 5.11 per cent if the Coles proportion of the income is excluded.

Elsewhere in regional Victoria, local private investors edged out off-shore investors to buy two IGA supermarkets on very sharp yields around 6 per cent.

The IGA in Hamilton, in the Western District, fetched around $3 million and was part of the freehold portfolio controlled by Alan Fisher, who last year sold his portfolio of country supermarkets to Ritchies. It has a new 15-year lease.

The Kyabram IGA is understood to have sold for around $4.2 million. The deals follow the recent sale of the Nagambie IGA, to a Chinese buyer, for $8 million.

The deals were struck by CBRE agents Joseph De Rieu and Justin Dowers who received nine formal offers.

“The IGA in Hoppers Crossing was sold this year at 5.3 per cent and the one at Wantirna South was done at 5.5 per cent so the Hamilton store is only 50 basis points behind them – that’s not a big difference,” Mr De Rieu said.

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DEXUS Property forecasts solid rental growth

CBD office rents are rising as incentive deals are declining. Photo: Michele MossopDEXUS​ Property, the country’s largest office landlord, says demand for office space is on the increase and that has led to a fall in the average rental incentives being offered to tenants.
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Further endorsing the tight market for tenants is an expected increase in demand from small to medium businesses who are keen for a city address and seemingly willing to pay the higher charges.

DEXUS’ executive general manager, office and industrial Kevin George said one example is the new leases in Governor Phillip Tower, where net effective rents have increased by 20.4 per cent.

In the group’s first-quarter update Mr George said DEXUS has “our overall average incentives fall across the portfolio, driven by some properties which are in high demand and as a result have achieved solid growth in rents and reduced incentives at these properties”.

Over the quarter the key leases have been at its 30 The Bond, in Sydney, where Lendlease​ vacated to Barangaroo with the Roche group taking up 4418 square metres of the space available space.

Mr George confirmed the group’s forecast that office vacancy in Sydney’s premium-grade assets would fall to about 4.2 per cent in the 2018 financial year.

In Melbourne there has also been a solid rise in leasing activity from a variety of smaller space users, which has resulted in a significant amount of leasing activity with over 158,000 square metres of space being leased and occupancy improving from 90.4 per cent at June 30, 2016 to 92.3 per cent in only three months.

The industrial sector is also riding high with activity for the next quarter expected to continue in the small to medium-enterprise category.

“This activity is aligned to the food-processing and material-handling automation sectors seeking central west solutions in Sydney. Various negotiations are also under way within south-east Melbourne involving tenants from the education and wholesale retail sectors for both metro office and warehousing space,” he said.

DEXUS chief executive Darren Steinberg reiterated the market guidance for the 12 months to June 30, 2017, of underlying funds from operations (FFO) per security growth of 3-3.5 per cent and distribution per security growth of 2.5-3.5 per cent.

Mr Steinberg also said as part of the evolution of offices, DEXUS has partnered with Guardian Early Learning Group (Guardian) to offer DEXUS customers priority on waitlists over a proportion of available childcare places.

The offering is expected to provide greater convenience and flexibility for working families of DEXUS customers.

Guardian has more than 90 centres across the country, including a number within the DEXUS portfolio, with plans to expand that offering as opportunities arise.

“The partnership comes as demand grows for childcare placements in high-quality early learning programs particularly in inner-city areas. This partnership provides DEXUS customers with easier access to childcare as families transition back to work and seek high-quality learning environments for their children, close to their home or workplace,” he said.

DEXUS holds its annual meeting in Sydney on Wednesday.

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Investor snaps up Vermont apartment complex for $5.9m

The combination of five ground level shops, four upstairs apartments and rooftop commercial premises in a near-new two-storey building at 580-584 Canterbury Road in Vermont prompted an investor to pay $5.9 million for the complex. Photo: LEE SANDERS 18 Oliver Lane in Melbourne. Photo: supplied
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Investors took a serve of Italian pizza when they paid $1.625 million for a slice of real esate at 38 Jackson Court. Photo: supplied

SALES

Vermont

The combination of five ground-level shops, four upstairs apartments and rooftop commercial premises in a near-new two-storey building at 580-584 Canterbury Road prompted an investor to pay $5.9 million for the complex. CVA’s Ian Angelico and Jarrod Moran said the shops were anchored by Subway and Australia Post. The 5 per cent yield was “only slightly lower than the expected sales result if the 10 individual tenancies were sold separately,” they said.

Box Hill

Fitzroys has sold a strategic landholding at 107 Severn Street for $3.9 million under the hammer. Michael Ryan, Martin Huang and James Gregson said the double-storey rooming facility with seven bedrooms, three bathrooms and caretakers’ residence netted the vendors a 100 per cent lift in value since they bought the site in 2014 for $1.95 million.

Berwick

Multiple buyers helped bid up a building with blue-chip tenant Bendigo Bank at 43-45 High Street when it sold at auction for $3.225 million. Gross Waddell’s Jonathon McCormack and Andrew Waddell said the secure cash flow from tenants Bendigo Bank and Handprint Design represented a yield of 3.9 per cent.

Hawthorn

A blue-chip development site has sold under the hammer for $2.839 million, a land rate of $5655 per sq m and passing yield of 2.1 per cent. Six groups placed bids on 21 Queens Avenue, a modest, single-level warehouse leased until April 2018. CBRE’s Ed Wright, Sandro Paluso and Chao Zhang handled the sale.

Doncaster East

Investors took a serve of Italian pizza when they paid $1.625 million for a slice of real estate at 38 Jackson Court. The shop leased to a popular Italian restaurant Pompeos for more than 40 years was sold at auction by Ray White Commercial’s Brett Diston on a 2.9 per cent yield. Pompeo’s is on three-year lease paying net rent of $48,000 per annum. In another deal, Ryan Amler sold a hairdressing salon at 4/37-39 Station Road in Cheltenham for $382,000.

Bentleigh

A shop leased to Brighton Flooring at 819 Nepean Highway has sold for $790,000. The 137 sq m showroom sold with a five-year lease plus five-year option in place, returning annual rent of $34,000 net, said Crabtrees Real Estate’s Matthew Marenko and Chris McKenzie.

Oakleigh South

John Nockles and Seamus Bolst from CVA have sold two properties, unit nine and  unit 18 at 19-23 Clarinda Road, to local investors. Unit nine changed hands for $635,000. It was returning $38,000 pa net equating to a yield of 5.98 per cent. Unit 18 went for $661,500, on a 4.93 per cent yield.

Cheltenham

A standalone warehouse at 20 Bricker Street was sold to a private investor by Ray White Commercial Oakleigh’s Ryan Amler for $720,000 on a yield of 6.3 per cent. Mr Amler said the warehouse was leased by long term tenant Revamp Refinishing for $45,600 per annum who had recently exercised a three-year option.

Mulgrave

An owner-occupier in the home decoration sector has paid $580,000 for a strata-titled office and warehouse facility at 29 Glenvale Crescent in Enterprise Park. Savills Australia’s Daniel Kelly said the price of $1812 a sq m was a benchmark for this type of strata property.

LEASES

Clayton South

Propertylink Group has secured a 15-year lease for 71-93 Whiteside Road and 84 Main Road, significantly reducing leasing risk and improving the expiry profile across its investment portfolio. Propertylink signed Premoso, a member of the Walkinshaw Automotive Group, for 28,195 sq m in a deal negotiated by CBRE’s Stephen Adgemis and David Aiello.

Richmond

StreetKitchenCo has leased a 171 sq m cafe in Botanicca Business Park in Swan Street on a 5+5-year basis at $75,000 per annum, equating to $438 per sq m. Knight Frank’s Paul Pellegrino said David Jones’ recent announcement it would take office space there made it an attractive move. Landlord Zig Inge group has put the entire building up for sale.

Melbourne

Global marketing company Signal has secured a new home at 18 Oliver Lane. CBRE’s Scott McGlone negotiated the 440 sq m lease for the Chicago-headquartered firm. Signal will move into a fully fitted out premises with high ceilings and polished timber floors on a three-year lease negotiated with landlord M.H. Kremlin.

Mulgrave

Kitchen appliance manufacturer Schweigen has taken on a new office and warehouse lease at unit eight, 3-4 Anzed Court in a deal brokered by Savills Australia’s Daniel Kelly. The 600 sq m office/warehouse was leased for five years at $100,000 per annum net.

MOVERS

Savills Australia’s national valuation and advisory division has promoted three individuals in Sydney and Melbourne. In Sydney Sandra Peachey takes the role of national director, mortgage valuations. In Melbourne Ross Smillie becomes national director – industrial valuations and Joe Phegan is state director Victoria.

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Australia to get single food labelling brand to seize China growth under Twiggy Forrest plan

Australian exports are set for a shake-up under a radical labelling proposal. Photo: Jessica Shapiro Andrew ‘Twiggy’ Forrest is driving the change. Photo: Geoff Jones
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Australia’s beleaguered farmers are poised to unlock vast new export markets as producers, peak bodies and both sides of politics prepare to bury their differences to sell products into China under a “one brand, one logo” approach for the first time.

The new strategy – under wording and a trade symbol designed for maximum Chinese impact – would pitch Australia in a head-to-head race against the gold-standard in export marketing, “100% Pure New Zealand”.

The breakthrough, facilitated by the recent free trade agreement, would have all Australian food products including beef, vegetables, cheese, wine and high-end condiments predominantly branded as Australian ahead of their individual branding, while also certifying them as clean, green and safe.

The proposed high-tech, high-visibility labelling would also be designed to be counterfeit-proof and to allow China’s increasingly safety and quality-conscious consumers – in a country where the middle class is projected to grow by 350 million people over the next four years – to trace the origins of individual products back to a specific animal or producer.

Mining magnate and agriculture sector champion Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest has led a campaign to persuade multiple state and industry sectors, who wanted to retain their own established brandings, to back the breakthrough.

His message to them, supported by the government and opposition, is “get on board, or get out of the way”.

Industry sources say the labelling, a virtual revolution in Australia’s primary export practices, needs to be in place within 18 to 24 months or Australia will permanently surrender access to the biggest and most lucrative market the world has seen.

Already, developing countries such as Brazil and Uruguay have stolen the march in getting beef into China in larger quantities than Australia.

In a keynote speech to the National Farmers Federation Annual Congress on Wednesday, Mr Forrest will warn farmers that consumers will develop new habits and the current way of working could see Australia go backwards.

“This is a significant breakthrough,” Mr Forrest’s speech notes say.

“Both parties know, and now acknowledge, that an opt-in unified brand – one that sells safe, clean, green Australia and one that is underpinned by the world’s best traceability technology – is indeed worth the risk.

“We have got to cut through the confusion … states are fighting territories and other states on branding, governments compete with companies on messaging, and there are a multitude of different logos, and that might work in our local supermarkets, but it doesn’t work overseas.

“The clear value proposition of safe Australia, a clean, green Australia was, and is, being completely lost overseas.”

Trade Minister Steve Ciobo will work with Austrade and professional market researchers to design the branding, which would ideally apply to all food and even to high-end wine labelling.

A source involved said the focus had to be on designing a brand and logo based on the Chinese consumer rather than on “what we in Australia think best encapsulates our products”.

Current options identified by Australian consumers – such as the highly identifiable kangaroo symbol – are likely only to confuse Chinese buyers if placed on beef products or milk.

Mr Forrest, a founder of the Australia Sino One Hundred Year Agricultural and Food Safety Partnership, said the move away from the one-child policy alone would add 16 million children to the Chinese market each year.

“The Chinese like to eat what we do because they know they can rely on our pristine environment and stringent quality standards,” he said.

“A little while ago a Chinese soapie put Australia’s Weetbix on the menu. This little box of goodness is available here in Australia [for] $4 to $5, in China it’s $40 to $50.”

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Global infrastructure set for rerating as private equity dives in

The gap in valuation between public and private infrastructure is narrowing, CBRE Clarion says. Photo: Phil Weymouth CBRE Clarion’s Jeremy Anagnos with UBS Asset Management chief Bryce Doherty. Photo: Christopher Pearce
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Shares in listed infrastructure groups are more likely to be boosted by private equity firms buying their shares in lieu of opportunities in the unlisted space, rather than the promise of fiscal stimulus, CBRE Clarion’s head of infrastructure says.

Australia’s relatively small infrastructure space includes some of the most expensive stocks on the S&P/ASX 200 Index, including Transurban and Sydney Airport. But the picture is much friendlier elsewhere, and public companies are trading at a discount to their private counterpart, chief investment officer of infrastructure at CBRE Clarion Securities Jeremy Anagnos said.

The sector has been a haven for pension and sovereign funds that have been driven out of bonds as yields, until recently, have tumbled to multi-year lows.

But while valuations of local stocks have soared due to the relatively small pool, outside of Australia, most of the capital from these funds have been into buying physical assets as opposed to shares, US-based Mr Anagnos said.

“The same phenomenon hasn’t played into the listed market,” he said.

“Our analysis says that on the average the pricing we’re seeing for assets transacting in the private markets implies that the assets held by the public companies are at a discount of around 15 to 20 per cent,” he said. ‘Dry powder’

Yet listed companies could be set to a rerating, due to a scarcity of private assets and there is plenty of cash to deploy. At the end of the third quarter, private capital sitting as “dry powder” globally topped $US136 billion ($178 billion), and that scarcity is driving them into buying shares, Mr Anagnos said.

“In the last six to 12 months there has been an increasing overlap or intersection of private infrastructure funds and large sovereign fund investments buying straight into public companies,” he said.

Global Infrastructure Partners, one of the largest private equity firms in the space sitting on as much as $US16 billion, last month bought a €3.8 billion ($5.4 billion), 20 per cent stake in publicly listed Spanish company Gas Natural. Last year, IFM took a 25 per cent stake in a Mexican toll road owned by OHL Mexico.

“This is a trend that will highlight the market and the more that capital starts to overlap, the more that [valuation] disconnect will start to narrow.”

The UBS Clarion Global Infrastructure Securities Fund holds 4 per cent of its total holdings in Transurban, with a 7 per cent invested in Australia. Almost half the fund is tied up in US shares. Among its top holdings it includes US-based Crown Castle International, Kinder Morgan, Sempra Energy and Canadian firm Enbridge. Reform cheer

Private equity will be cheered by the prospect of fiscal reform that has sprung up from the perceived limits of central bank policy and mooted by the likes of new British Prime Minister Theresa May and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

But more critical to the prosperity of the sector is the need for significant capital to be invested in ageing infrastructure assets and also a shift towards cleaner energy.

“It is far easier to get approvals from regulators to spend the capital [on refurbishment] because of the need for these assets not to cause harm,” Mr Anagnos said.

“The governments have been understanding of the need for new infrastructure and investment. But governments are not always able to follow through on what they talk about.”

Fiscal spending would be the “gravy” which will add to the investment case for infrastructure, but the time frame is more uncertain.

“It will bring awareness to the asset class more broadly and good for our economic environment, but it would be a plus to the investment case rather than what we build the investment case on.”

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Spring carnival 2016: Matt Cumani relying on the best for Melbourne Cup

Matt Cumani is better placed than most to comment on the raging debate between how Australian horse trainers prepare their distance horses as against their fellow horseman in Europe.
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As the son of highly successful trainer Luca Cumani, Matt Cumani has tasted both methods of getting your racehorse to run a distance.

Cumani, 35, maintains that in some instances Australians prepare their horse similarly to English and Irish trainers.

“It’s often referred to as the Aussie way of putting speed into their legs, but giving riding instructions to gallop a horse over seven furlongs and go home hard the final two furlongs is pretty much world standard,” he said.

“They worked them that way in Sydney, Melbourne, and Newmarket. In fact it’s a fairly standard approach to preparing race horses.”

Cumani has moved to Ballarat and has established his own training base and believes there are only a few telling differences in how trainers make stayers perform at there best.

Cumani has a Melbourne Cup runner this year, Grey Lion, who has enjoyed the best of both worlds.

“It’s just those subtle differences really when two horses gallop here, they leave the track straight away and while they’re still blowing they will be hosed down, scraped and sent back to their box,” Cumani said.

“But, in contrast, in England after our horses are worked they will take a leisurely hour walk home. And that’s the way of finding out little idiosyncrasies and also goes a long way to keep them relaxed and enjoy what they are doing. But it’s labour intensive because if you have 100 horses in work in England, you need perhaps 30 or 40 track workers to make the operation tick.

“And that’s a luxury that in Australia we can’t afford. It’s very expensive to hire so many extra riders that it’s just not worth it.”

Cumani believes that staying horses are unnecessarily put into shorter races in Australia on their way to their favourite distance journeys which may be 2000 metres or beyond.

Cumani points out that there is no need to have horses start preparations at 1400 metres, then 1600, and then to their favourite distance.

“I just get concerned that you start them at a distance a lot shorter than they are used to and they can become exhausted because of the taxing effects of racing at an unsuitable trip and they struggle to get their stride and rhythm,” he said.

“That’s why in Europe horses go straight into 2000-metre races or beyond. It’s feared that the horses become uncertain of what they are doing racing at a short distance.

“And then the next time they come to the races they don’t know what to do and they want to get the race over as quickly as possible so then you’ve got a horse that over races and pulls hard.”

Cumani maintains that Australian racing has incredible upsides at this time of year with the attention being solely focused on the sport.

“When the major races are on in England you don’t have soccer fans instantly becoming taken with racing. The sport in England is a niche sport,” he said.

“But in Australia it’s quite different, football fans begin to embrace racing as soon as the footy is over and the sport and the sporting landscape is all racing.”

And his hopes of winning a Melbourne Cup with Grey Lion may rely on the best of both worlds when preparing a stayer to win Australia’s most important handicap.

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Giving is receiving in good deed game

AUCTION: The property was snapped up by a Sydney investor for $622,000 and the proceeds were then donated to fund childhood cancer research.I was inspired last weekend by the building and sale of what they called the “Cure House” at Teralba.
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It got me thinking about charity and philanthropy and howI could probably give a little bit more than I do.

For those who missed it, the Children’s Cancer Institute, McDonald Jones Homes, McCloy Group and a number of other parties joined forces to celebrate International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month by building a house in under 21 days.

This seemed like a massive construction effortin itself, considering the time it can take to put together a flat pack barby from a hardware store, let alone a house.

But there was so much more to it.

The home was built on land donated by McCloy by over 120 tradies who lent their time free of charge to meet the challenge of getting the luxury project completed within the designated timeframe.

It was fully furnished by Freedom, with all kitchen and laundry appliances provided by Electrolux and home entertainment by Panasonic.

And if it all sounds like a bit of a plug, you’d have to say #accomplished.

The deednot only raised the profile of childhood cancer research in what is an unfortunately crowded marketplace of good causes, it raised funds. Lot’s of them.

The property was snapped up by a Sydney investor for $622,000 at an auction attended by such luminaries as Scott Cam from The Block, and the proceeds were thendonated to fund childhood cancer research.

Talk aboutfeel-good factor.

“We’re here to help, and we’ve got to help,” McDonald Jones Homes founder Bill McDonald told theNewcastle Heraldlast Sunday.

This got me thinking about the different levels of helping you can do, depending on your circumstances.

Charity, I thought, began at home, and philanthropy seems to begin when that home gets really big.

I think things like that when I hear about billionaires like Facebook founderMark Zuckerberg pledging $3billion to eradicate all disease in the lifetime of his children.

Talk about raising the bar.

Charity actually focuses on eliminating the suffering caused by social problems, while philanthropy focuses on eliminating social problems.

Feeding someone during a famine is charity while teaching someone how to grow food is philanthropy.

The Cure House project was surely an inspired combination of the two in that it was focused on eliminating the suffering of childhood cancer by generating funds to research causes to eliminate childhood cancer.

Zuckerberg’s pledge just reflectsthe different level we work on when it comes tosocial conscience. We’d do the same thing in his position if we became unfathomably rich, wouldn’t we?

There’s certainly no shortage of causes.

And of course it’s all relative. In fact, most of my generosity is aimed towards relatives –immediate ones mainly, which I often complain are sending me broke.

But that’s family for you.

You struggle and save andthen, according to Forbes Magazine, you amass an incredible fortune, a fraction of which you should give away, ala MrZuckerberg, Warren Buffett, George Sorosetc.

It’s called philanthropy, which Americans have become famous for, derived from the Greek words “philos,” which means loving, and “anthropos,” which means humankind.

Cynics might suggests “taxman-thropy” plays a role too,but indeed I was surprised recently to hear that a person I know contributes a weekly amount, beyond taxes, to causes she supports too.

I wasn’t so much surprised to hear that, as perplexed that I don’t do it.

The friend’s no billionaire but obviously rich in spirit, and It’s not as if it’s a new idea.

References to charity and philanthropy can be found through the ages in the Koran, Bible, Torah and in the teachings of many other religions and cultures, including Buddhism, Japanese and Native American cultures, Hinduism and the ATO.

There is no doubting what is the right thing to do; as fundraisers know only too well,the challenge is getting the doingdone.

Which gets us back to the Cure House.

Certainly, it wasthe right thing to do, although there may be a question mark over theslight kerfuffle that followed.

A refund claim by McDonald Jones Homes on certification fees totalling apiddly $1000 was rejected by Lake Macquarie City Council.

Voting to donate the money to another charity, LMCC ruled they have a responsibility to look after ratepayermoney and that the good publicity was rewardenough for the builder.

Technically that was probably the right thing to do as well. ButIt shouldn’t detract from what was an inspirational project.

City dump FFA Cup holders Victory to reach final after Cahill controversy

‘Two sets of rules’: Victory coach fuming at referee
Nanjing Night Net

Melbourne City dumped holders Melbourne Victory out of the FFA Cup in a pulstating semi-final, winning 0-2 in front of nearly 16,000 fans at AAMI Park on Tuesday night to set up a final against Sydney FC.

The decider will be staged at the same AAMI Park venue on Wednesday, November 30.

The semi-final was a brilliant advertisement for the enmity that derbies develop, and for the intensity and passion generated by sudden-death cup soccer.

It had drama, controversy, niggle and spite, melees and confrontations as spotfires broke out all over the field.

Tim Cahill put himself about in a ferocious first 45 minutes when he looked as fired up as he was for any Merseyside derby back in his Everton days.

Carl Valeri, the Victory captain, threw himself into the fray at every opportunity, while Besart Berisha hustled, shouted and got in the face of City goalkeeper Dean Bouzanis on every occasion the shotstopper fluffed a clearance.

Victory coach Kevin Muscat – once a teammate of Cahill’s at Millwall – clashed with City’s star on the sideline; Cahill clashed with Jason Geria and Leigh Broxham. Geria went into the book for a rough challenge on Fernando Brandan and at every turn crunching tackles flew in, challenges were issued and never shirked.

This was a game in which no quarter was sought – nor any offered. The stakes were far higher than 10 days earlier, when City humiliated Victory 4-1 in the opening A-League derby of the season.

For Victory it was the chance to retain the trophy they won last season, for City the opportunity to win its first silverware and give its Manchester owners the first return on their investment.

It was also an immediate opportunity for Muscat’s men to prove what an aberration that derby loss had been.

Muscat ensured his side would not be bossed around in the same manner on this occasion, and they sought to impose themselves physically on their slicker oppponents from the outset.

But it was Lawrence Thomas who was the busier goalkeeper early, having to save from Cahill and then produce an excellent stop to deny Brandan.

A minute later – the ninth – came the game’s most controversial moment. Luke Brattan won the ball well in midfield from Fahid Ben Khalfallah and fed Brandan wide on the left. Brattan kept running forward as the winger cut in and played the ball back to him before Brattan fired a beautifully struck drive from outside the area past Thomas.

The only problem was that Cahill strayed into an offside position, and although he had not touched the ball he was in Thomas’ line of vision. The fact he had to duck to avoid the ball suggested he was interfering with play. The assistant referee cut short the City celebrations by flagging for offside but he was ultimately overruled by referee Shaun Evans, who allowed the goal to stand.

Victory’s North Terrace leaders had announced before the game that they would no longer co-ordinate active support, but in truth their influence was not missed in this match. There was plenty of singing and chanting, and every time Cahill went near the ball the cry of “here for the money, you’re only here for the money” rang out.

But they could not inspire their side to an equaliser in the first half, although they came close when City’s Danish defender Michael Jakobsen had to head off his own line and Bouzanis almost gifted Victory a leveller when his clearance cannoned into Besart Berisha and looped just over the bar.

Berisha had a golden opportunity to put his side back on level terms just after the half hour when he was set up with a great chance by Marco Rojas, but hit his cross over the bar. Shortly after, Baro’s header was dramatically saved by a diving Bouzanis as the temperature rose even higher.

Rojas had the ball in the net with 18 minutes remaining only for the goal to be ruled out as Berisha had played him on from an offside position. City put the tie beyond Victory’s reach with 13 minutes remaining when Paulo Retre robbed Nick Ansell and fed Nick Fitzgerald, his shot being seized on by Brandan to fire past Thomas.

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

Fraudster won’t have to repay thousands

Convicted Lavington criminal Pauline Blake.Pauline Blake will never have to repay the thousands and thousands of dollars she ripped-off the community.
Nanjing Night Net

It has been estimated she spent up to $25,000 collected for a bogus cancer charity on herself and her partner-in-crime, husband Dylan Blake.

But no compensation has been sought in the case, simply because there was no paper trail detailing who donated to the heartless fraudster.

The only punishment she has is a 12-month jail term that she will get to serve in her Lavington home.

Magistrate Tony Murray suggested to Blake she could have easily faced the more onerous penalty of prison time.

“It’s very fortunate that she didn’t come before me,” he said.“Obviously his honour found special circumstances.”

Fellow magistrate Michael Crompton previously ordered that Blake, 41, be jailed, though that this be in the form of home detention.

The court was told on Tuesday that Blake was deemed suitable for such an order, which Mr Murray then confirmed.

She was given a non-parole period of eight months, which means she will be allowed to leave home again on June 24 next year.

Blake was ordered to immediately return to her home to await the arrival of Community Corrections officers to fit her with monitoring equipment.

Dylan Blake will be sentenced on November 16, though because of parity in the matter – the pair carried out the ruse together, which meant each was charged with dishonestly obtaining property by deception – he too is unlikely to end up in jail.

Blake initially sobbed when she was given the 12-month jail term by Mr Crompton on September 14.

That was in sharp contrast to her relaxed demeanour on Tuesday, safe in the knowledge she would instead get to hang around her own home for a few months.

Mr Murray asked defence solicitor Chris Halburd whether compensation was being sought.

In reply, Mr Halburd said “no” as it was not known to who that money would be paid.

Blake came up with the idea of raising money for a fake cancer charity after her mother-in-law died of the disease.

They struggled to pay their bills, something which Mr Halburd previously indicated the crime was an offence “of need, rather than greed”.

Mr Murray though castigated Blake when she fronted court in early August.

“One would think there would be significant public condemnation of this type of behaviour. It’s a particularly callous deception.”

The fraud ran for three years from November in 2012 and involved walk-throughs in pubs and clubs and donations by businesses. Dylan Blake was not in court on Tuesday.

Border Mail