Monthly Archives :

April 2020

Australian Government initiative to boost exports

Australian Government initiative to boost exports 1170 658 tgl_editor

The Australian Government has put together an International Freight Assistance Mechanism, consisting of $110 million, to help Australia’s agriculture and seafood exports get into key markets. It will also consist of flights bringing essential items back into Australia in response to the current pandemic. This will assist producers of high-value exports including seafood, red meat, dairy and horticulture. The key markets initially mentioned were China, Japan, Hong Kong, Singapore and United Arab Emirates (UAE) but this list may expand depending on demand. 

The increase in flights is also welcomed by those in the trade sector because Covid-19 had severely impacted the number of flights to and from Australia. The Federal Trade Minister Simon Birmingham explained that “90% of our air freight usually goes in the bellies of passenger aircraft. With very few international passenger flights leaving Australia at present, our exporters are facing major hurdles. Through the better coordination of freight out of Australia, we can restore key freight routes and establish more frequent flights to our key markets so our agricultural and fisheries exporters can deliver their products to customers on time”. The Agricultural Minister Littleproud added “We’re backing our farmers and fishers by making sure they can get more of their high-quality product into overseas markets. This is about reducing the barriers our agricultural and fisheries exporters face, so they can get back to focusing on producing the best and highest-quality product in the world”. The number of destinations will also increase from 4 to 11.

The International Freight Assistance Mechanism has already proved to be a success with 560 registered businesses and 50 flights booked under the list of high value products. Initiatives like this are exactly what Australia needed to help boost the economy after the uncertainty caused by the recent pandemic outbreak.

BREAKING NEWS FOR FREIGHT & LOGISTICS – Airline Virgin Australia goes into administration

BREAKING NEWS FOR FREIGHT & LOGISTICS – Airline Virgin Australia goes into administration 649 365 tgl_editor

Yesterday Virgin Australia sadly announced that they have gone into administration. The airline had been operating in Australia for over 20 years with 56 destinations around the world. The Covid-19 outbreak severely impacted the aviation sector right from the get-go, passenger flights where restricted/grounded and staff were stood down. This impact was felt by the freight & logistics sector, which saw air freight prices rocket and space availability extremely limited. Just last Friday it was announced that Virgin had been given Federal Government backing to continue operating its domestic flights and reinstate 200 staff. However, the struggling airline said it was not enough to keep them open due to their increasing $5 billion debt. They had requested a $1.4 billion loan from the government, but Scott Morrison insisted that the Government should not need to step in and help. This has created a loss of around 10,000 workers.

Richard Branson, Founder of Virgin Group, posted on his Instagram page insisting that this is not the end of Virgin Australia saying:

“I am so proud of all of you and everything we have achieved together.

I know how devastating the news today will be to you all. In most countries federal governments have stepped in, in this unprecedented crisis for aviation, to help their airlines. Sadly, that has not happened in Australia.

This is not the end for Virgin Australia and its unique culture. Never one to give up, I want to assure all of you – and our competitor – that we are determined to see Virgin Australia back up and running soon. We will work with Virgin Australia’s administrators and management team, with investors and with government to make this happen and create a stronger business ready to provide even more value to customers, competition to the market, stimulus to the economy, and jobs for our wonderful people.

Virgin Australia has captured the hearts of all Australians. That is down to all of you – past and present – who made it the best airline to fly within Australia.

This is not the end for Virgin Australia, but I believe a new beginning. I promise that we will work day and night to turn this into reality.”

Coronavirus: Scott Morrison interviewed on unemployment, lifting restrictions

Coronavirus: Scott Morrison interviewed on unemployment, lifting restrictions 150 150 tgl_editor

Scott Morrison spoke yesterday to Nine News Australia about various topics that are critical to the quality of life for Australians in the coming months.

It’s basically about:

– The unemployment rates

– The Jobkeeper program

– The easing of the restrictions of the lockdown

– The serious financial difficulties faced by Virgin and Qantas.

– The reopening of wet markets

For more information on any of these topics, the TGL team provides you with a summary below.

Unemployment is set to soar to its highest rate in almost three decades, with 1.4 million Australians expected to be out of work. But as Scott Morrison said, the 

“ JobKeeper program means we will be able to limit that devastation and also we’ve got the doubling of the Jobseeper program which means that those people that do find themselves employed will be able to gain access to the support that we’ve never seen in this country before.”

We are entering a double crisis without precedent: a health crisis and an economic crisis. Our prime minister also adds:

” Our balance sheet which meant we’ve been able to bring the budget back into balance which meant we are able to do the things we are doing now and cushion that blow but it is still a big blow. I don’t want to lessen that in terms of how we speak of it. It is a serious impact on our economy it is impacting people’s livelihoods. It is heartbreaking, but despite all that hardship Australian’s have responded so well and there are doing their best. What we asked them to do over the Easter weekend they did. We are keeping on top of this virus but we’ve got to keep keeping on top of it and provide the economic supports that we can, the lifeline that we’ve provided through JobKeeper and Jobseeker to get people through to the other side.”

For the time being, the Prime minister does not plan to extend the Jobkeeper program to casuals or to foreign workers. He considers that they already have access to things like rental assistance and a range of other benefits which means they are certainly not forgotten. Then our Prime Minister goes on to say that: 

“It is the strongest safety net we’ve ever seen in this country for those who are out of work which is now in place. We’ve got the JobKeeper program to keep 6 million Australians connected to their employer, so this is unprecedented in its scale. Over $200 billion has been committed to supporting our economy for people in the economy, their businesses, their jobs to get through to the other side.”

On a subject that is even more pleasing: the easing of the restrictions of the lockdown. Thanks to the measures established and respected by the Australians, as the Prime Minister proudly points out, the number of new cases per day has been drastically reduced. From 460 on 28 March 2020 to 28 on 14 April 2020. However, the Government wants to avoid the same fate as Singapore or Sweden where the virus has just taken off again. That’s why the Prime Minister is asking the Australians to continue to respect the security measures put in place several weeks ago.

“We are looking at how that can be achieved but I wouldn’t want to mislead people, we are still many weeks to go on this and it’s important to keep on top of the virus. While people have been amazing in complying with what we’ve been asking for, we can’t allow that to be eroded by the premature easing of restrictions.” says Scott Morrison.

In regard to the economic difficulties faced by Virgin and Qantas, the First Ministerial is very clear. Besides sectoral aid to the aviation sector, the Government will not provide personalised assistance to these two companies. He adds that:

 “The Transport Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister has been working with those airlines around domestic routes. They’ve already worked together with them on international routes that are vital not just in bringing people home but also to support much needed freight and transfer of medical supplies.”

Finally, the Prime Minister expressed his views on the decision of the World Health Authority to reopened wet markets where this virus is supposed to have come from. 

“I think that’s unfathomable quite frankly. We need to protect the world against potential sources of outbreaks of these types of viruses. It’s happened too many times, I’m totally puzzled by this decision. We don’t have them here in Australia and I’m just puzzled by that decision but we’ve got to stay focussed on what’s right in front of us and what we are doing here in Australia and the policies we are putting in place and the big responses economically and health-wise.”