“International education is our second most valuable export..." - Mr Perrottet said
(See Translation in Arabic Section)
Sydney - M E Times Int'l: International students are expected to be welcomed back under an NSW Government pilot plan for their safe return over the second half of the year, to help kick-start the billion-dollar industry.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said international students are a vital missing piece in the state’s economic recovery, with the sector worth $14.6 billion in 2019.
The pilot plan will initially see a limited number of international students in purpose-built accommodation adhering to the same quarantine requirements as all incoming travellers.
“International education is our second most valuable export and we need to do what we can to help students return and revive this sector as quickly as possible,” Mr Perrottet said.
“If we don’t act fast, students will turn to other overseas destinations, and it could take the sector decades to recover. “
Under the plan 250 international students will come to Sydney per fortnight from mid-year in addition to the current numbers of returning Australians.
AFIC grieves for murdered Canadian Muslim family, calls for clampdown on right-wing extremists and balanced reporting of Middle East events.
Sydney: “For the past few days, I have been devastated with the horrifying news of the murder of members of three generations of the Afzal family (in Canada). As I pray for the recovery of their surviving 9-year-old son and for their remaining family and friends, I cannot help but pose the question: what degree of evil would corrupt a 20-year-old to intentionally run-down a civilian suburban family? A grandmother, loving parents and a young girl were ruthlessly and callously murdered by a right-wing terrorist. We must weed out the root cause that precipitated in the murder to make sure it does not happen again,” said AFIC president Dr Rateb Jneid.
“As I pray for this family, I reflect on the nexus of this terrorist murder and the Israeli attacks on Indigenous Palestinians, and I draw the clear conclusion that is known to all; this murder was inspired by the anti-Palestinian and anti-Muslim reporting on the Middle East conflict. Earlier this year, AFIC made submissions to the Australian government to counter right wing extremism, we have seen ugly examples of right-wing extremism in Australia, it is time for our government and all governments to counter the threat of right-wing extremism before more innocent people fall victims to it.” said AFIC CEO Keysar Trad.
“I urge all governments and especially our Australian government to enhance the mechanisms of detection and countering right-wing extremism before we are forced to grieve the loss of more innocent people,” said Dr Jneid.
“I ask Allah to give healing to the grieving family and to admit the murdered martyrs of the Afzal family into paradise.” said The Most Eminent Abdul Quddoos Al Azhari, National Grand Mufti of Australia.
Australian PM Morrison off to UK for G7 Leaders summit, meeting with UK PM
Canberra: AUSTRALIAN Prime Minister Scott Morrison has flown to Cornwall, UK, for the G7 Leaders’ Summit at the invitation of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.
“There has never been a more important time for Australia to be at the table with the world’s largest liberal democracies and advanced economies,” he said.
“There is a lot at stake for Australia, the region and the world.”
He stopped off in Singapore for his annual Leaders’ Meeting with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.
The G7 Summit will be his first trip outside the Indo-Pacific region since the pandemic began and will be joined by other leaders like British PM Johnson, US President Joe Biden, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
PM Morrison will travel to London for talks on the UK-Australia Free Trade Agreement and visit Paris to meet with President Macron.
Partnership with Singapore
Australia and Singapore will establish a $30 million partnership to accelerate the deployment of low-emission fuels and technologies such as clean hydrogen to reduce emissions in marine and port operations.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Australia is leading practical international partnerships to make new energy technologies commercially equivalent to existing methods.
“We work with partners around the world to make clean energy affordable and reliable,” Prime Minister Morrison said.
“We are positioning Australia for success by investing now in new technologies that will support jobs and industries in the future.
Joint statement by the Prime Minister of Australia and Singapore
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong hosted Prime Minister Scott Morrison on 10 June 2021 in Singapore for the 6th Annual Leaders' Meeting of Australia and Singapore. The Prime Minister acknowledged the long-standing friendship and deep bilateral cooperation between the two countries, rooted in common strategic and economic interests. They reaffirmed the Australia-Singapore Comprehensive Strategic Partnership as unique in its ability to be constructive, broad-based and forward-looking, and welcomed the progress made since the Virtual Fifth Annual Leaders' Meeting in March 2020, despite the challenges posed by COVID-19. They also welcomed the entry into the agreement. The digital economy between Singapore and Australia comes into effect in December 2020.
Eastern states hit by cold snap and floods
Sydney: Australia's south-east has endured a wild day and night of winter weather with high winds, heavy rain and widespread snow.
The weather has been the result of a fierce low pressure system following a cold air mass from the Southern Ocean which came up earlier this week.
Orange, in the Central West of NSW, was on Thursday looking decidedly white after waking under a heavy blanket of snow.
With the snow have come power blackouts with about 1200 homes and businesses without power in and around Orange.
Several roads were also closed.
The Blue Mountains, west of Sydney, also received a dusting of snow on Thursday.
Meanwhile, in Victoria’s Gippsland region were urged to evacuate to escape rapidly rising floodwaters, after a wild storm wreaked havoc across Victoria on Wednesday night.
The Bureau of Meteorology had predicted the level of Traralgon Creek could reach a peak similar to that experienced in the 2012 flood event.
The State Emergency Service has rescued people from their cars in Traralgon where major flooding on the Traralgon Creek was inundating low lying areas of town.
Then there was the wind with gusts of more than 120km/h caused havoc in Victoria.
The SES said it had received more than 3,600 calls for assistance.
In Queensland, a cold front swept through the state is with below zero temperatures recorded Thursday morning at Wellcamp, Kingaroy, Blackall, Clermont, and Biloela.
Biden issues warning to Russia and China before heading to the UK for G7 summit
US President Joe Biden issued a warning to Russia and China as he left the US for the first foreign trip of his presidency.
He has now arrived in the United Kingdom to attend a summit of G7 leaders where he also plans to meet the Russian President Vladimir Putin.
As he boarded Air Force One he said he wants to show America's rivals that he plans to build strong partnerships with European leaders.
West Australian Premier warns against warring with China
WA: West Australian Premier Mark McGowan has lashed out at the federal government’s handling of tensions with China, describing comments from some officials as “off the planet”.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison this week called for the World Trade Organisation to be strengthened, and Defence Minister Peter Dutton said a conflict with China over Taiwan “should not be discounted”.
Peter Dutton says he wants more US marines in the Northern Territory and US navy ships to operate out of Western Australia.
Mr McGowan has repeatedly warned the government should “rethink this language” about a war.
“I have never heard something so insane in my life, this discussion about this issue,” he told reporters on Thursday. “It’s absolute madness … it’s off the planet.”
As tensions have escalated, China has hit Australia with a series of tariffs on goods including crayfish, barley and wine.
But Mr McGowan urged the federal government to stop making inflammatory comments.
“I have the view that they’re our biggest customer – we sell them literally 20 times as much as we buy from them. Why do we want to undermine that?
Meanwhile, Australia and Japan’s joint statement in opposition to China’s coercive behaviour presents a “united front” ahead of the G7 summit, according to a political journalist.
The joint statement, which comes after two hours of virtual meetings between Australia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Marise Payne, Defence Minister Peter Dutton and their Japanese counterparts, labelled China’s economic behaviour as undermining “the rules-based international system”.
Journalist Sarah Ison says the declaration was “a really pointed statement” against Beijing.
“It was very much the two countries coming together and presenting something of a united front in this statement and it no doubt has already gained criticism from China,” Ison said.
The remarks come after Mr Morrison addressed the nation with a major foreign policy speech ahead of his trip to Cornwall for the G7 Summit.
"The real guts of Morrison's speech was the part where he was talking about democracies cooperating economically as well as strategically," Mr Sheridan said. "What I think is happening, but who knows if it's going to follow through, is the world is sorting itself out into a US-led coalition and a China-led coalition.
"The US-led coalition is mainly democracies but with some sort of fellow travelling authoritarian regimes like Vietnam.
"The Chinese system is overwhelmingly authoritarian systems, Russia, Iran, and North Korea are in the Chinese camp."
Mr Sheridan said the way Australia will deal with China's trade coercion was to "trade less" with China and to develop "alternative trade markets".
NSW Budget set to expand Cost of Living Service with $6.6m funding boost
Sydney: The NSW Government’s Cost of Living Service is being expanded as part of the 2021-22 State Budget.
$6.6 million in funding will help customers access the full range of benefits with another $7.6 million from the Department of Customer Service redirected towards upgrading the service.
Service NSW will also hire extra staff, which will allow for up to 500 customers a day to benefit from the service.
This means that potentially every minute someone will save up to $600 per appointment.
This support will make it easier for customers to find and apply for government rebates and savings, access personalised support with face-to-face appointments gradually resuming from July 11.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian said easing the cost of living for households remains a top priority for the Government in the 2021-22 Budget.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said this year’s Budget would continue to drive the economic recovery from COVID-19.Sydney: The Australian's Foreign Editor Greg Sheridan says the world is "sorting itself out" into two coalitions, one headed by the United States while the other is headed by China.
Is the world going into two coalitions...?