(Bloomberg) -- Stocks in Asia fell after another epic rout on Wall Street and in the wake of a further escalation in coronavirus cases in South Korea, Asia’s fourth-largest economy.The won slumped towards its weakest since 2016, leading Asian currency declines. Stock benchmarks fell over 1% from Seoul and Tokyo to Hong Kong and Shanghai. That’s still less than the 3% plunge overnight in the U.S., which took the S&P 500 Index to its worst two-day slide since 2015. Ten-year U.S. Treasury yields remained near Tuesday’s record low. The offshore yuan dipped, and the yen retained gains.South Korea said its national total for coronavirus cases is now more than 1,000, up from just 51 a week ago. American health officials on Tuesday warned that they expect the epidemic to spread in the U.S., news that extended the sell-off in stocks. The virus and the market reaction has also entered U.S. politics. President Donald Trump tweeted that “Stock Market starting to look very good to me!” after the close on Monday. Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren by contrast said the plunge in the stock market is only the “tip of the iceberg” of a growing economic threat from the coronavirus.Meantime, traders are monitoring for any signs of policy accommodation as the global economy absorbs the blow of virus-linked shutdowns. U.S. central bankers are closely monitoring the spreading virus, but it is “still too soon” to say whether it will result in a material change to the outlook, Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Richard Clarida said Tuesday. Traders nevertheless are betting on further easing.“The ultimate impact remains entirely unknown at this stage,” said Eleanor Creagh, a Sydney-based strategist at Saxo Capital Markets. “And uncertainty is the enemy of conviction.”Elsewhere, crude oil remained around $50 a barrel after slumping for two straight sessions.These are some key events coming up:Earnings keep rolling in from companies including: Peugeot SA on Wednesday; Baidu Inc., Best Buy Co. Inc., Occidental Petroleum Corp. and Dell Technologies Inc. on Thursday; and London Stock Exchange Group Plc on Friday.The Bank of Korea announces its policy decision on Thursday, with rising risks of an interest-rate cut.U.S. jobless claims, GDP and durable goods data are out Thursday.Japan industrial production, jobs, and retail sales figures are due on Friday.These are the main moves in markets:StocksFutures on the S&P 500 Index added 0.1% as of 10:22 a.m. in Tokyo. The gauge fell 3% on Tuesday.Japan’s Topix index retreated 1.5%.Hong Kong’s Hang Seng lost 1.5%.The Shanghai Composite fell 1.2%.South Korea’s Kospi index retreated 1.5%.Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index declined 2.1%.CurrenciesThe yen was flat at 110.16 per dollar.The offshore yuan dipped 0.1% to 7.0332 per dollar.The euro bought $1.0874, little changed.BondsThe yield on 10-year Treasuries fell one basis point to 1.34%.Australia’s 10-year yield lost about three basis points to 0.90%.CommoditiesWest Texas Intermediate crude oil added 0.5% to $50.17 a barrel.Gold rose 0.6% to $1,644.70 an ounce.\--With assistance from Elizabeth Stanton.To contact the reporter on this story: Adam Haigh in Sydney at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Christopher Anstey at email@example.comFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- What a day for the Walt Disney Co. to let out its biggest secret.Just as investors were engrossed by news updates on the worsening coronavirus and its convulsive effect on global financial markets, Disney delivered another jolt by announcing longtime CEO Bob Iger was stepping down. Huh? It was the last thing shareholders saw coming. The company’s choice wasn’t even who most people expected. Bob Chapek, the head of Disney’s theme parks business, is taking over, effective immediately. Iger will remain chairman through to the end of 2021.It’s the most significant change to happen to the entertainment giant in more than a decade. Iger had become almost as much the face of the company as Walt Disney was himself, and was responsible for building it into the globally admired brand and content powerhouse that it is now. While Iger, at 69 years old, had been inching closer to retirement, it wasn’t supposed to come until next year. Shares of Disney fell 6% in after-hours trading, as investors tried to pick their jaws up off the floor. Anyone who read Iger’s memoir, “The Ride of a Lifetime,” which was released last year, might have been led to believe that another top Disney executive, Kevin Mayer, was next in line for the keys to the Magic Kingdom. Mayer oversees Disney’s new streaming-TV operations — the very business at the center of the new Disney. It’s become the focus of attention both inside and outside the company in recent months as Disney entered the industry’s streaming wars with the wildly successful launch of Disney+. Iger made repeated mentions of Mayer in the book, and few of Chapek. Mayer is “a master strategist and dealmaker,” Iger wrote. “A CEO couldn’t ask for a better strategic partner.” Partner. The question now is, will Mayer stay, after being passed over for what might be the most enviable job in corporate America? Even though Iger, during a conference call held for investors and analysts Tuesday, tried to soothe concerns about the seemingly abrupt move, it’s hard not to wonder about a larger backstory, one where there’s potentially some internal friction. As Iger kept putting off retirement over the years, other successor candidates seemed to get sick of waiting and left.Not choosing Mayer does raise an even bigger question: How do Iger and the company view the future of Disney? If only for their respective roles, Chapek in some ways represents Disney’s past, while Mayer represents the new Disney. All that being said, Chapek is a widely respected leader, and this certainly wasn’t a decision anyone at Disney would make lightly. From one Bob to another, Iger said Tuesday that it was the right time to transition to a new CEO and that Chapek “is absolutely the right person.” There’s little reason to question that. And it should be remembered, when Iger was first named CEO, investors weren't so sure about him, either.There is one telling nugget from Iger’s book that could be seen as presaging today’s turn of events. Passing over all his transformative dealmaking — buying Pixar, Marvel, Lucasfilm and then the big one, Rupert Murdoch’s 21st Century Fox — Iger instead highlights opening Disney’s Shanghai park as one of the defining moments of his career. Chapek played a big role in that. Chapek “oversaw the largest capital expansion in the history of our parks,” Iger said Tuesday, highlighting the Shanghai opening, as well as the “Star Wars” Galaxy Edge attraction at its U.S. parks and the company’s large fleet of cruise ships. Iger added that he and the board had identified Chapek as his likely successor “quite some time ago.”Iger isn’t saying goodbye just yet. He explained that part of the reason for stepping aside now is so that he can focus more on the creative side of Disney. What he wants to accomplish more than anything before he leaves is “getting everything right creatively.” Content is more important than ever as Disney almost single-handedly props up the box office and lure fans to its streaming services, all the while integrating the Fox assets and keeping alive its traditional media networks that still drive the bulk of its profits. But that’s still only part of the reason for choosing to step down now. Whatever the case, it’s the end of an era for Disney; Iger has left an indelible mark, and left Disney better than it was before him. Chapek has big shoes to fill. To contact the author of this story: Tara Lachapelle at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Beth Williams at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Tara Lachapelle is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering the business of entertainment and telecommunications, as well as broader deals. She previously wrote an M&A column for Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Ledinek engineering has built and delivered the largest planer for glulam in its history. The maximum planing width is 3.000 mm and the planing height goes up to 610 mm. Source: Timberbiz This means that both very wide and curved object beams can be planed. Block gluing for columns can be planed up to a height of 610 mm. Ledinek would not say for which company the machinery was designed and commissioned. Ledinek produces machinery for planing, profiling, finger jointing and engineered timber manufacture from product design to delivery and installation. The company has engineering facilities in Slovenia, Austria, Germany and Russia.
Quick, compact and fuel efficient, the new Tigercat 602 grapple skidder is ideal for high value selective logging in tight or challenging terrain. The size and agility of the 602 grapple skidder makes it ideal for selective felling applications. Source: Timberbiz The machine can access high value timber in steep terrain, while minimizing damage to the residual stand. A fixed front axle with an oscillating centre section allows the 602 to achieve a narrow overall width of 2,7 metres (106 in). The Tigercat FPT N45 Tier 4f engine delivers 125 kW (168 hp) at 2,200 rpm while conforming to emissions standards for North America and Europe. Performance in tough terrain is excellent with no gear shifting required. Full tractive effort is available at any engine speed, minimizing wheel spin and improving breakout performance. Maximum fuel efficiency is achieved by the use of Tigercat’s load sensing hydraulic system. Electronic control technology combined with Tigercat’s unique hydrostatic drive system allows the skidder to operate at variable engine rpm, automatically increasing engine speed when additional horsepower is required. Tigercat’s Tier 4 solution is packaged into a physically smaller engine compartment than competing machines, leading to clear operator sightlines. According to Tigercat this machine has excellent cab ergonomics, Turnaround and the benefits that come with hydrostatic drive, along with painless maintenance routines.
The forest owners’ associations Norrskog and Norra Skogsägarna agreed to merge and form a new joint association under the group name Norra Skog. Norra Timber runs the manufacturing and marketing businesses within the group. Source: Timberbiz The result of the merger is a significantly larger company with considerable production of raw materials from northern Sweden, creating a force to be reckoned with in the market. Norra Timber’s manufacturing family now comprises three respected sawmills in Kåge, Sävar and Hissmofors, not to mention several units for added value products and a unique pole factory. “This merger now makes Norra Timber by far the largest wood processing company in northern Sweden, with a processing capacity of over 200,000 m3 per year,” explains Erik Eliasson, Sales Director at Norra Timber. According to Norrskog this represents the start of something totally new. A new, strong, joint forest owners’ association creates totally different, better conditions for private forest owners in Northern Sweden. It also means that we become a bigger, broader-based supplier of timber products to our shared customers. Norrskog said this new association will offer high quality, good delivery performance and good service by investing in three modern, cost-efficient industrial facilities in Kåge, Sävar and Hissmofors. Several investments will be made in order to achieve further growth by driving up production. The merger paves the way for increased volumes and a broader product range, as well as boosting the capacity for innovation. A new marketing organisation is currently being set up in order to meet customer needs. “As we continue to invest in our industrial family, I have no doubt that Norra Timber’s customers will notice a further improvement in the quality of our wood products and their delivery. We are proud to offer customers sustainable products in the form of heartwood from the forests of northern Sweden,” Pär Lärkeryd, CEO of Norra Skog said.
Responsible Wood has been announced as a key exhibit at the 2020 National Sustainability Conference in Brisbane. Running from 27 April 27 to 28 April at the Calile Hotel in Brisbane, the packed program features Responsible Wood director Mark Thomson who will chair a session on the Circular Economy. Source: Timberbiz Staged annually, the conference attracts a wide range of corporates, small business owners and government and it is a great way to connect with all-important specifiers and procurement professionals. For Responsible Wood Marketing and Communications Officer, Jason Ross, the partnership provides an important touch-point for sustainability connected professionals. “Sustainability, through the emergence of mandatory green, voluntary ecolabels and environmental certification schemes, has seen a resurgence in recent years” he said. “More and more, specifiers and procurement professionals are looking to do the right thing and making informed decisions on purchase decisions. “The National Sustainability Conference provides Responsible Wood with an opportunity to connect with decision makers and provide specifiers and procurement professionals with key information as it relates to forest certification.” And when it comes to timber and paper-based products, tracing the Responsible Wood and PEFC claims on products is critical. “Responsible Wood and/or PEFC claims on product has been largely misunderstood by specifiers and procurement professionals alike,” Mr Ross said. “Whilst sourcing timber and paper based products from sustainably managed forests is a positive step, a Responsible Wood or PEFC formal claim on the product traces forest products from the forest, and through Chain of Custody. “When it comes to Responsible Wood and PEFC, a formal claim on product is the gold standard.” For more information about the National Sustainability Conference, please visit the National Sustainability Conference website https://conference.sustainability.asn.au
Revolve Group Inc. is finding Wall Street can be a tough crowd to satisfy. The Los Angeles-based e-commerce site reported its fourth-quarter earnings aftermarket Tuesday, highlighting nearly $601 million in sales for 2019, a 21 percent increase from its nearly $499 million haul the previous year. Its net income also rose 16 percent to roughly $36 million for the year. The numbers were buoyed by its strong showing in the fourth quarter, when the company drew in more active customers, and who also spent a little more. The company reeled in some 1.5 million active customers in the quarter, a 27 percent increase from in the previous year, and the average order value rose 3 percent to $282. This did little to impress shareholders as the stock plummeted more than 20 percent after market to $15 a share, just slightly above its 52-week low of $14.35 and well off its high of $48.36. The company warned that sales would be negatively affected as the coronavirus epidemic weighed on supply.In the three months ended Dec. 31, the company brought in net sales of nearly $148 million, a 16 percent increase from the same time period the previous year. Its net income for the fourth quarter was $8.4 million, a 9 percent increase from 2018, and its adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization was $13.7 million, a 15 percent increase from last year. The company’s goals for the year include building on its cultural marketing initiatives like its appearance last month on the ABC reality show "The Bachelor" in an episode that drew more than 5 million viewers, as well as ongoing investments in its owned brands and technology, its bread and butter, company executives said in a call with analysts Tuesday.“We remain committed to technology…we’re testing new initiatives,” co-chief executive officer Mike Karanikolas said on the call, referring to one of its ongoing efforts to develop mobile web engagement. The company also said it closed the year with no debt, and with cash and cash equivalents of $65.4 million, a 28 percent increase from September. But it does expect the ongoing coronavirus outbreak to affect operations in the first, and, potentially, the second quarters of 2020. The company projected a “one- to three-point negative impact” to its net sales for the 2020 fiscal year because of supply-side constraints to its owned brands, as well as third-party brands that obtain products from China. Shipments from China have been delayed by a few weeks, amid delays with factory reopenings after the Lunar New Year, which has typically seen Chinese employees back at by around Feb. 10. "The situation remains fluid and uncertain,” the company said. Revolve was founded in 2003 by Karanikolas and co-ceo Michael Mente, and debuted on Wall Street last summer when it opened trading with an $18 IPO share price, which nearly doubled to $34 the first day. More from WWD * Going Commando in Denim * EXCLUSIVE: Atlanta de Cadenet Taylor and Morgan Lane Debut New Collection * Revolve Gets Personal Through Snap + Style Technology
According to Rod Murray Hyne Timber Automation Project Manager, Tumbarumba is home to a world first for automated graded timber stacking. Source: Timberbiz “Our team has created a fully-automated timber sorting and packing production unit,” Mr Murray said. “Product is already being packed by the system and our operators are now assisting the contractor with testing.” The sorting and stacking of graded timber is made possible through the use of optic recognition of on-the-fly grading markings on the individual pieces of timber. “Grades are marked on each piece,” Mr Murray said. “And it’s a mark that only a robot could understand.” Human operator’s safety is protected by world-class safety cells and sensors utilising light curtains. Energy efficiency was also imperative in the design with advanced energy-efficient technologies employed. For example, the system automatically shuts down when timber is not coming through the production line. Lighting and motors are also energy efficient. The prime objective of this ground-breaking project was to eliminate the injuries possible with the old manual sorting and stacking lines.
Half-day workshops titled Resilience, Recovery And Rebuilding in selected bushfire-affected areas will include presentations by the RFS and CFA on preparing for and handling fire situations and architects experienced in designing with timber to BAL requirements. Source: Timberbiz “As representatives of our industry, we believe it is important to help assist communities affected by bushfires,” Eileen Newbury, National Marketing and Communications Manager of Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) said. “The long-term sustainable rebuilding of appropriate infrastructure and housing to enable the community to become fully functional as quickly as possible is vital. “Lowering future disaster risk by rebuilding to the bushfire standard and providing information and resources to do this will benefit rural and regional individuals, families and communities.” Each workshop will run for up to three hours and include presentations from the CFA or RFS (depending on the location) on planning and preparing your property, including pets and livestock. Architect Nigel Bell from EcoDesign will discuss building with timber on BAL rated sites and David Rowlinson from Planet Ark’s Make It Wood campaign will talk about the environmental and biophilic benefits of using sustainably sourced wood. The workshops will be hosted by TV personality, author, cook and craftsperson Tonia Todman who recently lost her Kyneton home and home-based business to fire. Ms Todman will share her experience and discuss what she has learned as a result. Information available to attendees will include WoodSolutions Design Guide Building with Timber in Bushfire-prone Areas that has been updated in accordance with the recently released bushfire standard AS 3959-2018 Construction of buildings in bushfire-prone areas. This 40+ page publication provides clear, concise explanations of each Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) and where and how timber may be used at each level. Attendees will also have access to the online WoodSolutions BAL calculator with which, by answering a list of questions, they can discover the BAL that applies to their site. “If any FWPA members or other industry participants would like to attend the workshops, we would be delighted to hear from them at firstname.lastname@example.org,” Ms Newbury said. Workshop locations and dates are: BAIRNSDALE, VIC – Tuesday 10 March, 9.30am – 12.30pm TUMBARUMBA, NSW – Wednesday 11 March, 9.30am – 12.30pm BEGA, NSW – Thursday 12 March, 9.30am – 12.30pm
Lack of space in Chinese ports is bringing a virtual halt to New Zealand log exports to China. The Forest Owners Association says precautions in China against coronavirus have resulted in almost no offtake of logs in China for processing and exporters understand that the remaining log yard space at most ports near processing centres is quickly disappearing. Source: Timberbiz Association President, Peter Weir says exporters had hoped that business would return to normal after the extended Lunar New Year holiday finished in China two weeks ago. “That hasn’t happened. Many Chinese sawmills are yet to get back to work,” Mr Weir said. “New Zealand exporters have nowhere else to send the industrial grade logs they harvest.” While New Zealand’s domestic sawmills usually took about 40 percent of the harvest, sawmills supplying the New Zealand housing market would only buy stiffer and higher quality sawlogs or knot-free logs from pruned trees for joinery. The upper logs from a pruned true often graded out as industrial logs, and these logs were exported. “In regions where there is no domestic sawmilling, many harvest contracting crews are being put on reduced hours or, worst case, stood down. Regrettably many of our contractors have little alternative but to lay-off skilled workers,” Mr Weir said. Log exports to China were worth $2.7 billion for the year to the end of December 2019. Over the past three months very large volumes of European spruce salvaged from forests under attack by insects have been shipped into log markets in China. Mr Weir said that that flood of salvaged logs is directly attributable to climate change with recent warm winters and longer summers. “There would have been much less inventory pressure if these exports had not arrived in China, but the concern about coronavirus has happened at just the wrong time for New Zealand,” he said. Mr Weir said the situation was fluid with different forest owners and management companies taking different approaches. “NZFOA members are doing what we can to retain our skilled labour force by sending better logs to domestic sawmills to make up for the shortfall from farm woodlots where logging has already ceased,” he said. “We continue to invest in the silvicultural work, including pruning, thinning and preparing recently harvested land before replanting begins in May or June.” He said most members would continue building safe forest roads and landings to be harvest-ready when markets recover. But that could take some months. Many larger forest companies were assisting contractors with business management and financial advice. “In Poverty Bay, we are delighted with the support we are receiving from local Federated Farmers who are looking for jobs to employ forest workers,’’ Mr Weir said. “Every few extra hours of income are most welcome.” Mr Weir said the Forest Owners Association was working closely with Te Uru Rākau in trying to lessen the impact of the log supply situation. “We are coordination with the government seeing what we can do together. Neither of us can solve this situation but working together as a partnership will lessen the impact,” he said. “Our members are not looking for handouts, but we do want to work out equitable ways for working with the government to assist the various harvesting crews. They are ones who will need the help. “We are mindful too that a substantial reduction in harvesting is likely to have a major and rapid supply chain effect here in New Zealand, with a large dedicated workforce in trucking and port loading which is also going to feel the impact.”
Kangaroo Island Plantation Timber has rejected claims that because of bushfires on the island it won’t need its proposed KI Seaport at Smith Bay for 20 years. Rather, KIPT managing director Keith Lamb said today that the need to press forward with the timber salvage operation reinforced the need for the seaport. Source: Timberbiz Yumbah Aquaculture claimed on Tuesday that KIPT “has made it clear that KI won’t need a timber wharf for perhaps 20 years, and only then if its plantations are replanted”. Yumbah Aquaculture, which claims to be the largest producer of Greenlip abalone in the world, is opposed to the construction of the seaport which would be built less than 200 metres from its Smith Bay operation. But Mr Lamb said he did not know where Yumbah got its information from. “We certainly never said that. “In fact, we said quite the contrary,” he said. “We are well track and are only weeks away from completing the final documents. “We have no reason to believe we won’t receive approval. “That will set us up to go to the next stage.” KIPT still needs secondary approvals to undertake including native title. In the meantime, the company was pressing ahead with all the planning work around procurement and construction so that once the secondary approval was granted work could commence. Mr Lamb said that would probably be about 12 months away. Yumbah said in its statement on Tuesday that it had cautiously lifted an investment freeze over its Kangaroo Island abalone farm, confident there is now no substance to the business case for a 650-metre timber export wharf less than 200 metres from its Smith Bay operation. “Kangaroo Island Plantation Timbers has made it clear that KI won’t need a timber wharf for perhaps 20 years, and only then if its plantations are replanted. So the risk that has paralysed our investment plans for Smith Bay has abated,” company director Anthony Hall said. “Like all KI residents we mourn the damage and loss resulting from the fires. However, Yumbah cannot see how Kangaroo Island Plantation Timbers can finance, build or operate its KI Seaport concept after the loss of its commercial plantations. “Objectively, the claimed KI Seaport business case no longer stacks up,” Mr Hall said.
A Newspoll published in the Australian this week which found a majority of those surveyed believed insufficient hazard reduction was the main reason for the severity of the summer bushfires. Source: Timberbiz The Newspoll, published on Monday, asked the question: “Which do you think was the main cause of the severity of the recent bushfires?” Of the more than 1500 people polled, 56% cited inadequate hazard reduction. AFPA Chief Executive Officer Ross Hampton said the Newspoll shows the community clearly understands Australia must do more to reduce bushfire risk, and that should take a whole-of-landscape approach which incorporates mechanical fuel reduction to complement hazard reduction burns. “This fire season has shown that the multiple approaches by multiple land managers and agencies when it comes to fuel load reduction isn’t working,” he said. “In many fire prone countries, the use of Mechanical Fuel Reduction alongside hazard reduction burns has proven highly effective in keeping communities safe and helping preserve forests areas. “The terms of reference for the Royal Commission into the bushfires include ‘preparedness and resilience responsibilities, which includes land management and hazard reduction measures’,” He said. “We are urging the commission to investigate Mechanical Fuel Reduction as part of its review. Now the results of this Newspoll show Australians understand that reducing fuel loads in our forests is a priority.” The AFPA recently released a report, Using Fire and Machines to Better Fire-Proof Our Country Towns, which makes the case for mechanical fuel reduction, showing its effectiveness overseas, and providing examples where it could have reduced bushfire risk in Australia.
The Bob Brown Foundation has lodged a court appeal against a ban on forest protests. Worksafe Tasmania boss Mark Cocker last week issued a ban on protest activities deemed to be a safety risk until further notice, with the threat of potential fines up to $500,000. Source: Timberbiz The move was widely applauded by industry bodies, with AFPA CEO Mr Hampton saying regulators around the country should take notice of the decision, particularly in Victoria where demonstrators are conducting similar illegal forest worksite invasions. The foundation has requested the matter be immediately listed so consideration to suspend the appeal can be made. Foundation lawyer Roland Browne said there were three grounds for appeal. “Firstly, the regulator doesn’t have power to issue a broad-ranging edict that nobody can conduct forest protests anywhere in Tasmania,” he said. “Secondly, it is contrary to the Australian Constitution because it interferes and stops communication about government and political matters. “Thirdly, the regulator has not complied with the Act to satisfy himself of what the Act says – that he has to be satisfied before issuing a prohibition notice.” In his letter to Bob Brown Foundation chief executive Steven Chaffer, Mr Cocker said: “I reasonably believe that the foundation through its officers, workers and others have through acts or omissions and without reasonable excuse, engaged in conduct that is exposing or has exposed a person(s), to whom a health and safety duty was owed, to an imminent or immediate risk of death or serious injury.” Veteran environmentalist Bob Brown said he believed the notice was “illegal and unconstitutional”. “The prohibition order, I think, is a massive bungle and the Government, not the regulator alone, should take responsibility for that,” he said. “On the face of it it’s a political document not a legal document, as I read it.” Dr Brown questioned why the notice was issued under State Government letterhead, saying “the Minister for Justice knew about it and is responsible for it”. “It ought not be that in a healthy democracy like Tasmania that the serious work by the safety regulator be interfered with or controlled by political considerations. That’s not on. “I can’t believe such a ham-fisted edict was issued under authority of the Gutwein Government.” Building and Construction Minister Elise Archer said the State Government didn’t refer the matter to Worksafe, “nor has it in any way influenced the independent Regulator to take action”. “The Government strongly supports free speech and the right to protest, but threats, trespassing and endangering workers is completely unacceptable,” she said.
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