Monthly Archives: December 2018

Bali nine: Tony Abbott urges Indonesia to ‘reciprocate’ for Australia’s tsunami assistance and aid generosity

Australians on death row in Bali: Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. Photo: Anita Kesuma Australians on death row in Bali: Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. Photo: Anita Kesuma
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Australians on death row in Bali: Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. Photo: Anita Kesuma

Australians on death row in Bali: Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran. Photo: Anita Kesuma

Prime Minister Tony Abbott is urging Indonesia to remember the huge contribution Australia made in the aftermath of the 2004 tsunami and repay that generosity by sparing the lives of the two Australians on death row in Bali.

Mr Abbott’s comments, in which he sought to remind the Indonesian people of the Australian lives lost helping Indonesians cope with the natural disaster, marks the Australian government’s strongest response to the planned executions to date.

Mr Abbott said a short delay in Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran’s planned executions was an “encouraging straw in the wind” but was no sign of clemency and warned there would be consequences if the pair are killed.

“We will be making our displeasure known, we will be letting Indonesia know in absolutely unambiguous terms that we will feel grievously let down,” he told reporters on the Gold Coast.

“Let’s not forget that a few years ago when Indonesia was struck by the Indian ocean tsunami, Australia sent a billion dollars worth of assistance,” he said.

“We sent a significant contingent of our armed forces to help in Indonesia with humanitarian relief and Australians lost their lives in that campaign to help Indonesia,” the Prime Minister reminded.

“I would say to the Indonesian people and to the Indonesian government, we in Australia are always there to help you and we hope that you might reciprocate in this way at this time,” he pleaded.

“We can’t just ignore this kind of thing,” he added.

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop welcomed the short reprieve granted to the two Australians on death row in Bali but warned Indonesia its foreign policy “runs the risk” of being seen through the “prism” of the death penalty.

Chan and Sukumaran were due to be transferred from Bali to a Nusakambangan island prison this week, an indication that they would soon face the firing squad.

But their transfer has been postponed.

Indonesia’s Attorney-General HM Prasetyo has told Fairfax Media the delay is to grant the pair more time with their families and not a sign a stay of execution will be granted.

His spokesperson Tony Spontana on Tuesday also admitted the Central Java island wasn’t prepared to handle the execution of so many people at once.

“This week, I think we can’t do the transfers because the isolation cells and other things are not ready,” he told reporters.

Later on Tuesday Indonesia’s Foreign Minister Rento Marsudi stressed the “drugs crisis” her country was facing, saying that the death penalty was a domestic “law enforcement” response and not a foreign policy position.

“Although we understand the position of the Australian government it should be underlined that this issue is purely a law enforcement issue,” she said.

Ms Bishop on Wednesday welcomed the delay and said it would be a relief for Chan and Sukumaran and their families.

But she said the death penalty was a foreign policy issue because Indonesia seeks mercy for its own nationals on death row around the world and the Foreign Minister was personally involved in making those pleas.

“Indonesia’s foreign policy runs the risk of being seen through this prism,” Ms Bishop told the ABC, admitting it had placed stress on the relationship describing it as “difficult”.

“We’re asking Indonesia to show the same mercy as they seek to be shown to their nationals who are on death row in other countries,” she said.

Ms Bishop said the government would not give up hope the pair’s execution could be stayed but threatened diplomatic repercussions.

“There are a number of options available to us particularly in diplomatic circles and we will consider all those options but our sole focus at the moment is on getting a stay of execution,” she said.

“We will not give up hope while we continue to engage across the Indonesian government.”

Ms Bishop again urged the Indonesian government from taking any steps until Chan and Sukumaran’s appeal against their rejected clemency bid which is slated for February 24.

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

Cricket World Cup 2015: Darren Lehmann says tournament is too long

Australian coach Darren Lehmann has claimed that the breaks between his team’s matches at the World Cup are too long, suggesting that the tournament could be “condensed”.
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Lehmann’s side are in the middle of a seven-day gap between their opening pool game against England, and their next match against Bangladesh in Brisbane on Saturday. The team’s third clash – against New Zealand in Auckland – is a further week later, with breaks of four days, four days and six days scheduled between their last four encounters during the preliminary stage.

The group phase of the event spans 30 days, although just 42 matches will be played across Australia in New Zealand in that period.

Lehmann, looking to become the fourth man to coach Australia to World Cup triumph argued that the gaps were excessive.

“I think we can condense the tournament a little bit to be honest. A week in between is a long time,” Lehmann told SEN on Wednesday morning.

“I’m not sure how they do it with all the media rights and all that.”

Lehmann acknowledged, however, that the spread-out schedule ensured teams would not need to rest players from games.

With captain Michael Clarke set to return against the Tigers, and all-rounder Mitch Marsh firing, Lehmann was asked whether Shane Watson was at risk of being squeezed from the Australian line-up. Lehmann said he wanted his entire squad fit and firing, which would in turn lead to selection dilemmas.

“Mitchell Marsh doing really well, that puts pressure not just on Shane Watson but a lot of people.

“With Michael coming back, if he’s fit he’s going to play so we’re going to have to make a tough decision.”

The coach said he was conscious of the widespread criticism directed at Watson, but that ultimately Australia would pick its best side for each game of the campaign.

“But at the end of the day you have to make the right call for that particular game. Bangladesh on Saturday, that’s what we’re focused on and we’ll work out what the best XI is.

“With overcast conditions we might play a different way, and it depends on the wicket.”

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

Toll Holdings recommends Japan Post takeover bid at $9.04 per share

Toll Holdings’ board has recommended investors accept a cash takeover bid worth $9.04 per share from Japan Post, valuing Australia’s largest logistics company at $6.5 billion.
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The deal will give former Toll boss Paul Little a windfall of some $340 million.

Japan Post’s offer represents a 49 per cent premium to Toll’s closing price on Tuesday of $6.08. Toll shareholders will also receive a fully franked interim dividend of 13 cents per share.

Confirmation of the dealcomes after The Australian Financial Reviewrevealed the news of the impending dealon Tuesday night.

The acquisition of Toll is part ofJapan Post’sstrategy to become a leading global logistics company, with Toll becoming a division within Japan Post and retaining the Toll name.

Toll Holdings chief executive Brian Kruger will report to Japan Post’s CEO, Toru Takahashi. Picture: Luis Ascui

“Together, this will be a very powerful combination and one of the world’s top five logistics companies,” said Toll chairman Ray Horsburgh.

Toll management will remain in place with chief executive Brian Kruger reporting to Japan Post CEO Toru Takahashi.

Mr Takahashi said the partnership with Toll would start “a new chapter of looking outward” for Japan Post and would be a “transformational transaction” for both parties.

The bid implies an enterprise value of $8 billion for Toll, including $1.53 billion of net debt.

Toll was founded in Newcastle in 1888 by Albert Toll, who hauled coal by horse and cart before acquiring trucks. In the mid-1980s, the trucking group, originally named AF Toll, was bought out by its management team, led by Paul Little, who embarked on a series of acquisitions in Australia and Asia, listing the company on the Australia Securities Exchange in 1993.

Headquartered in Melbourne, Toll now provides parcel courier, freight transport and warehousing services in more than 50 countries.

Mr Little, who ran the company for 25 years and still owns 5.2 percent of Toll, said he supported the takeover bid.

Businessman Paul Little, who led a management buyout of Toll thirty years ago and ran the company until the end of 2011, stands to make a sizeable profit from the deal. Picture: Josh Robenstone

“It’s a positive and exciting opportunity for Toll,” Mr Little said, adding the deal would allow the company to expand its Asian footprint. “Japan Post are a very large, very strong, very reputable group that are about to be IPO-ed in their own right.”

Mr Little, already one of Australia’s wealthiest people with a net worth of $820 million, will make some $340 million from the deal.

Mr Kruger, who took over from Mr Little at the start of 2012 and owns 147,870 shares, will make $1.3 million.

Japan Post, which is planning an initial public offering in the next 12 months,wants to expand internationallyto diversify away from the country’s domestic postal market, which is shrinking due to a falling population and increased use of the Internet. It already has a business alliance with France’s GeoPost and Hong Kong’s Lenton Group.

The Japanese company, which provides postal, banking and insurance services and generates $8.8 billion in annual revenues, said it would position Toll as a “platform for cultivating global business”, leveraging its expertise to expand Japan Post’s global logistics operations and sales.

It also plans to use Toll’s experience in mergers and acquisitions to “step up” acquisitions throughout Asia, Europe and North America.

The deal comes as Toll reporteda 22 per cent fall in net profit to $136.6 millionbecause demand for its logistics services fell in Australia amid the economic slowdown.

Anthony Moulder, equity analyst at Citigroup, said investors should accept the offer given the pressures facing Toll’s business, describing it as “a clear win” for shareholders.

“We do not expect a competing offer, nor any increase from Japan Post,” Mr Moulder said.

Toll’s board has unanimously recommended investors accept the offer. A shareholder meeting to vote on the offer will be held in May after the company has hired an independent expert to review the proposal.

The acquisition will be undertaken through a scheme of arrangement, meaning it will require 75 per cent of the shares voted at the meeting cast in favour of the proposal for the deal to go through.

The deal will also require regulatory approval from Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board.

Japan Post expects to complete the takeover in early June.

This article first appeared on smh’sBusinessDay.

Not so Little: Meet the $340m winner in Japan Post’s takeover of Toll

Toll Holdings chief executive Brian Kruger will report to Japan Post’s CEO, Toru Takahashi. Photo: Luis Ascui Toll Holdings chief executive Brian Kruger will report to Japan Post’s CEO, Toru Takahashi. Photo: Luis Ascui
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Toll Holdings chief executive Brian Kruger will report to Japan Post’s CEO, Toru Takahashi. Photo: Luis Ascui

Toll Holdings chief executive Brian Kruger will report to Japan Post’s CEO, Toru Takahashi. Photo: Luis Ascui

Businessman Paul Little, who led a management buyout of Toll thirty years ago and ran the company until the end of 2011, stands to make a sizeable profit from the deal. Photo: Josh Robenstone

Toll Holdings’ board has recommended investors accept a cash takeover bid worth $9.04 per share from Japan Post, valuing Australia’s largest logistics company at $6.5 billion. The deal will give former Toll boss Paul Little a windfall of some $340 million.

Japan Post’s offer represents a 49 per cent premium to Toll’s closing price on Tuesday of $6.08. Toll shareholders will also receive a fully franked interim dividend of 13 cents per share.

Confirmation of the deal comes after The Australian Financial Review revealed the news of the impending deal on Tuesday night.

The acquisition of Toll is part of Japan Post’s strategy to become a leading global logistics company, with Toll becoming a division within Japan Post and retaining the Toll name.

“Together, this will be a very powerful combination and one of the world’s top five logistics companies,” said Toll chairman Ray Horsburgh.

Toll management will remain in place with chief executive Brian Kruger reporting to Japan Post CEO Toru Takahashi.

Mr Takahashi said the partnership with Toll would start “a new chapter of looking outward” for Japan Post and would be a “transformational transaction” for both parties.

The bid implies an enterprise value of $8 billion for Toll, including $1.53 billion of net debt.

Toll was founded in Newcastle in 1888 by Albert Toll, who hauled coal by horse and cart before acquiring trucks. In the mid-1980s, the trucking group, originally named AF Toll, was bought out by its management team, led by Paul Little, who embarked on a series of acquisitions in Australia and Asia, listing the company on the Australia Securities Exchange in 1993.

Headquartered in Melbourne, Toll now provides parcel courier, freight transport and warehousing services in more than 50 countries.

Mr Little, who ran the company for 25 years and still owns 5.2 percent of Toll, said he supported the takeover bid.

“It’s a positive and exciting opportunity for Toll,” Mr Little said, adding the deal would allow the company to expand its Asian footprint. “Japan Post are a very large, very strong, very reputable group that are about to be IPO-ed in their own right.”

Mr Little, already one of Australia’s wealthiest people with a net worth of $820 million and chairman of the AFL football club Essendon, will make some $340 million from the deal.

Mr Kruger, who took over from Mr Little at the start of 2012 and owns 147,870 shares, will make $1.3 million.

Japan Post, which is planning an initial public offering in the next 12 months, wants to expand internationally to diversify away from the country’s domestic postal market, which is shrinking due to a falling population and increased use of the Internet. It already has a business alliance with France’s GeoPost and Hong Kong’s Lenton Group.

The Japanese company, which provides postal, banking and insurance services and generates $8.8 billion in annual revenues, said it would position Toll as a “platform for cultivating global business”, leveraging its expertise to expand Japan Post’s global logistics operations and sales.

It also plans to use Toll’s experience in mergers and acquisitions to “step up” acquisitions throughout Asia, Europe and North America.

The deal comes as Toll reported a 22 per cent fall in net profit to $136.6 million because demand for its logistics services fell in Australia amid the economic slowdown.

Anthony Moulder, equity analyst at Citigroup, said investors should accept the offer given the pressures facing Toll’s business, describing it as “a clear win” for shareholders.

“We do not expect a competing offer, nor any increase from Japan Post,” Mr Moulder said.

The Transport Workers Union said it is seeking an urgent meeting with management to discuss the implications of the deal for Toll’s 40,000 workers, and gain assurances that Australian jobs are safe.

“We do note that the move will allow Toll management to keep their jobs,” the union said. However, “nowhere in the statement from Toll Holdings is there any mention of what the takeover would mean for workers.”

Japan Post’s chief executive told a press conference the company was planning on keeping all existing Toll workers.

Toll’s board has unanimously recommended investors accept the offer. A shareholder meeting to vote on the offer will be held in May after the company has hired an independent expert to review the proposal.

The acquisition will be undertaken through a scheme of arrangement, meaning it will require 75 per cent of the shares voted at the meeting cast in favour of the proposal for the deal to go through.

The deal will also require regulatory approval from Australia’s Foreign Investment Review Board.

Japan Post expects to complete the takeover in early June.

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

Radovan Pavicevic signs on for two years

Picture: Dean OslandYOUNG Jet Radovan Pavicevic will remain with the club for the next two years after signing his first professional contract.
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Pavicevic, 19, has made an impressive start to life as a Hyundai A-League player, scoring in just his second senior appearance against Brisbane Roar in round 16, before making an impact off the bench in the side’s round 17 draw against Western Sydney Wanderers.

It has been a significant turn around for the youngster, whojust last year fractured his arm while playing for the club’s youth team in the Northern New South Wales National Premier League.

The injury meant Pavicevic required a plate and 12 screws to be inserted into his arm, and forced him into a lengthy lay-off leading into the current campaign.

Pavicevic said “hard work” was the key to winning a place in the club’s future plans.

“I had to work hard to get through my arm injury and to get back to where I was playing before,” Pavicevic said. “I think I have gone past where I was before, so it feels good to be offered a contract.”

“Every kid wants to grow up and play in front of thousands of people, so it feels good,” he said.

The club’s reigning National Youth League Player of the Year added that he wouldn’t have put pen to paper at the Jets unless he thought that the future at the club was bright.

“I wouldn’t have signed if I didn’t think the club wasn’t going anywhere and if I didn’t think it would take me anywhere. You can see from the last couple of games that we have taken a step forward and I think it’s only going to get better,” he added.

Jets Head Coach Phil Stubbins believes Pavicevic has plenty of development left in his game, and wants Newcastle to help him excel.

“He’s a champion kid with the right attitude, he works hard, he’s a team player, and he’s showing all the traits that you want from a young player coming through your football club.”

“Radovan’s got a long way to go and there is no pressure on him. We want to try and provide an environment that helps him reach his full potential and allows him to go on to bigger and better things,” Stubbins said.