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- A deficit of $40.4 billion in 2014-15, over $10 billion more than the $29.8 billion deficit forecast just seven months ago in the Budget.
- The first surplus not expected until 2019-20.
- Unemployment to stay at 6.5% for some time, only dropping to 5.75% in 2017-18.
- Economic growth of 2.5 per cent in 2014-15 and then increase to near trend in 2015-16.
- Huge falls in commodity prices, which have led to the biggest drop in the terms of trade since records began in 1959, leading to company tax estimates dropping by $2.3 billion in 2014-15 and a further $14.4 billion over the forward estimates.
- Weaker wage and employment growth will hit income tax receipts by $2.3 billion in 2014-15 and $8.6 billion over the next four years.
- Delays in the Senate passing Budget measures will cost the budget $10.6 billion over four years.
- $3.7 billion in savings over four years through cuts to the foreign aid budget;
- $500 in savings over four years through the axing or consolidation of 175 government agencies; and
- $373 million in savings over four years by increasing the application charge for visas within the Permanent Family Migration stream.
- Establish a $100 million fund to support the creation of 100,000 full time jobs by providing payroll tax relief to companies hiring unemployed Victorians.
- Create the Premier’s Jobs and Investment Panel of industry leaders to provide direct advice to the Premier on the expenditure of $500 million for jobs and investment.
- Establish a $200 million Future Industries Fund to support job-creating projects in six identified high-growth areas, including pharmaceuticals, new energy, food and fibre, and international education.
- Establish Infrastructure Victoria to identify and priortise infrastructure needs; and Projects Victoria to deliver them.
- Set up Start-Up Victoria, a $60 million body to bring the most promising and innovative ideas to life through business case development, investment attraction and intellectual property advice.
- Increase the funding and resources for Victoria’s leading research institutions.
- Commission a review by the Victorian Competition and Efficiency Commission to recommend new procurement guidelines for innovation, research and development.
- Ministerial responsibilities - Finalising his ministerial team with an announcement expected later this week.
- Public Service reshuffle - Changes are expected to the Victorian Public Service in the form of structural changes to agencies as well as their leadership.
- East West Link - Releasing the contract details for the East West Link with the aim to convince industry and the public at large that the road is not the number one infrastructure priority for Victoria.
- Back to Work Act – Finalise the policy ready for introduction into Parliament during the first sitting week, which is expected to be brought back before Christmas.
Ogilvy Public Relations has been shortlisted for five awards which include Howorth, Pulse Communications and Ogilvy PR Melbourne.
B2B campaign: Mercer: Expectations vs Reality of Retirement in Australia. Launching a game changer – Mercer with Ogilvy PR (comprising Howorth and Ogilvy PR Melbourne)
PR-led event or activation of the year: eBay: Christmas Shoppable Windows – Pulse Communications
PR Leader of the year: Richard Brett – Pulse Communications
Large PR agency of the year: Pulse Communications
Best use of research / insights: Kronos: Australia’s Dilemma – Live to work or work to live? – Ogilvy PR
Congratulations to all of the teams and Richard Brett and we wish them the best of luck at the awards dinner on Wednesday 18th March.
You can view the full list of awards here.
Nino brings a wealth of experience to the role, having advised political, corporate and community leaders on strategic communications and issues management for more than 15 years.
He was a trusted adviser to a former Australian Prime Minister and managed media and stakeholder campaigns across the Ministry whilst in the PM’s office. He was also a senior media adviser to a former Deputy Premier of New South Wales.
Prior to joining Ogilvy PR, Nino delivered business critical strategies and campaigns to CEOs and leadership teams from peak Australian companies, multinational corporations and government departments on crisis management, political engagement, media issues and community projects.
He began his career as a journalist and gained a national profile as a respected workplace relations and senior political reporter with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Nino also has international experience, having directed large-scale education campaigns as a marketing head in the United Kingdom.
Ogilvy PR’s Group Managing Director – Corporate, Susan Redden Makatoa, said Nino is a welcome senior addition to a growing practice: “We’re working with complex challenges with multiple stakeholders, so we need smart thinking and excellent implementation capability.
“With his experience and influential contacts across the business, media, education, technology and community sectors, Nino is well placed to deliver excellent counsel and in depth quality thinking for Ogilvy PR’s clients.”
Ogilvy PR Australia is a joint venture between WPP and STW Group, Australia’s leading marketing
content and communications group.
ABOUT OGILVY PUBLIC RELATIONS:
Ogilvy PR Australia is the country’s largest PR and public affairs agency with offices in Sydney, Canberra and Melbourne. It is 51% owned by WPP and 49% owned by STW. For more information, visit our website at http://www.ogilvypr.com.au or follow us on Twitter at @ogilvypraus.
For more information contact:
Rebecca Tilly, STW PR ph: +61 410 501 043
This morning, 39 members of the Government’s Parliamentary team voted to spill the leadership – an effective vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister’s leadership of the Government. If, as suggested, the majority of the Cabinet team voted against the spill, then the Prime Minister has lost the support of an increasing number of his backbench, which may, as one journalist suggested this morning, spell a ‘death blow’ to his leadership.
This cloud will hang over the Prime Minister and the party as Parliament returns today and the Government moves on with its legislative agenda, with only five sitting weeks remaining before the next Federal Budget in May.
The Prime Minister faces a mammoth task to repair the party, his relationship with his Deputy, Julie Bishop, which has suffered during this leadership debate, and the Government’s fortunes. The Prime Minister gave an impassioned speech asked his party room for unity following the vote and subsequently stated to the public: “We think that when you elect a government, you elect a prime minister, you deserve to keen (them) until you change your mind.”
This is likely to inflame the backbench who will continue to push for change. In fact, the Prime Minister’s immediate challenge may be to survive the rest of the week as disgruntled back bench and a hungry media, who sense blood in the water, continue to whip up momentum. The New South Wales election in seven weeks’ time will be a defining moment for the Prime Minister if he can hang on.
What’s missing at the moment is a leadership contender. In the absence of a challenger, the backbench are voting against the Prime Minister rather than for any potential candidate (Julie Bishop, or Communications Minister Malcolm Turnbull are names touted). The game will change should either go public with their leadership ambitions with Turnbull in particular a divisive figure who splits the party. This may slow down any push to move.
The Prime Minister is due to appear at a press conference before today’s Question Time.
Peta Lange, Associate Director Parker & Partners
A curious twist emerged in the early weeks of January with the release of new data related to the sales figures for books (you know, physical books, those hefty, page-ridden relics of yesterday which were heading the way of the dinosaurs).
Well, miracle of miracles, it seems that book sales are on the rise again.
Waterstones, the UK’s biggest bookseller, reported a five per cent sale rise in December over the previous December. Foyles, Waterstones’ rival had an eight per cent rise. Nielsen Book-Scan reports that the number of physical books sold in the US last year rose 2.2 per cent, the same rise that Nielsen Book-Scan reported for Australia.
And, according to the head of Waterstones, the demand for the Kindle e-reader has all but disappeared.
What this all means is anyone’s guess but the cautionary part is for marketers and those who feel that logic and reason are the only determinants of future behaviour.
There is no doubt that using an e-reader is easy: online books can be purchased cheaply, quickly and effortlessly. E-readers – and the physical books they replace – take up no space in your house. You never have to feel guilty about ripping a page or creasing a corner by turning down a page ear again.
Every logic points to books disappearing. Yet for some reason they hang on, and the reason is that people don’t always act rationally. Quite simply we have become emotionally connected to these wads of paper.
People can act with the herd – as witnessed in the massive swings in recent elections; they can act in defiance of valid information – climate change sceptics; or they can act for intangible (an often unpredictable) reasons such as liking the smell, touch and look of books or vinyl records. You can just see the marketers of e-readers pulling their hair out at the sheer behaviour of people “but e-readers are just better, why can’t you see that!?”.
We know people like choice, but we also know they are paralysed by too much choice. We know that habit is a determinant that can override logic and rationality. We also know that emotion is an essential component of decision making, which is why storytelling has become such an important facet of media training.
Facts are important, but without giving people some emotional content to go with it, facts alone just won’t fly.
Sam North, Media Director
Ogilvy Public Relations again partnered with the Sydney Business Chamber to hear from Carnival’s Vice President of Corporate & Government Affairs, Peter Taylor, as he shared the journey from brand protection to brand promotion as part of the much discussed Corporate Affairs round table series.
More than 40 selected Corporate Affairs leaders and CEO’s joined the lunch, in a week where Sydney was suffering incredible heartache. Peter spoke about his role, the increased demand and repeat customers of the cruise industry, as well as creating a brand where customers and staff ‘feel the love’.
Peter was entertaining, informative, and hit a great balance of personal insight and corporate know-how. He could use real life examples to show how Carnival had benefited from proper brand engagement, and a drive for customer satisfaction.
Ogilvy Public Relations have been long time supporters of the Sydney Business Chamber, and welcome the opportunity to provide the business community with similarly engaging speakers to open the conversation and bring greater focus on the Corporate Affairs function.
All up they’re pretty depressing figures – depressing for the economy and, it must be said, for the Government’s chances of being around for a second term, let alone the third term which would enable it to usher in the first projected surplus in 2019-20.
After hanging their electoral appeal on the supposed economic mismanagement of the two previous Labor Governments, the rapid economic deterioration is likely to be worn by the current government. There is no doubt the Treasurer can legitimately point to the unexpected erosion in iron ore prices and other global measures as reasons behind the poor performance but the government’s call for understanding is diminished by the memory of their strident rejection of similar calls by former Treasurer Wayne Swan.
The high unemployment rate – when it hit 6% in February it was the first time since 2003 that it had a number with a 6 in front of it – will prove another hurdle for the Government, especially as it is forecast to continue to remain stubbornly high up to and including the expected time of the next election.
Unemployment causes economic, social and political problems – especially amongst the lower socio-economic groups which are normally disproportionately disadvantaged. It is this group – tagged John Howard’s battlers – which has been responsible for much of the Coalition’s success in recent elections.
As the MYEFO showed, the Treasurer’s problems have been exacerbated by the continued rejection of elements of the May Budget – by both the Senate and the voting public.
The highly unpredictable Senate is a political problem but one gets the feeling that the government has still to come to terms with the reasons behind the electorate’s rejection. History shows that voters will accept harsh Budgets if the measures are explain and the pain is shared. Voters judged this Budget to be unfair.
Savings are the order of the day with foreign aid and the public service once again feeling the brunt of the Government’s commitment to return the budget to surplus. Although, the Government resisted the urge to sneakily include measures under the cover of Christmas ignorance as some have done in recent years. The key measures include:
The Government has used MYEFO to signal a shakeup to child care and paid parental leave in 2015. This comes as forecasts to social security payments such as the child care rebate and payment blow out by $2.4 billion over the next four years.
Where to now for the Federal Government…149 sleeps from the Budget
The Government has commenced the journey ahead for the next Federal Budget with meetings of the Expenditure Review Committee (ERC) – chaired by the Prime Minster – well underway to identify spending priorities and importantly key savings on offer across portfolios.
The Government seemed to change its tone today on spending, with the Minister for Finance suggesting that the Government won’t chase “chase down” losses to revenue through cuts to spending.
The Government appears to believe it’s getting its spending back under control. Savings remain the order of the day though and are crucial to Ministers successfully getting any new expenditure through the ERC and Cabinet. With an increasingly bare cupboard of policy cuts that won’t hurt members of the community, the Government’s ears will be open to any savings measures on offer.
In the meantime, the Government will return to the table to negotiate the remaining 25% of budget measures, including significant structural saves, from the 2014-15 budget. Failure to do so will make the job ahead of it even harder.
Elizabeth Broderick, Sex Discrimination Commissioner and named as Westpac’s 2014 Woman of Influence, shared her belief in the power of sharing personal stories to effect change at Executive Women’s Australia’s lunch event late last month.
On the same day, two reports from the Defence Abuse Response Taskforce were tabled in Parliament, discussing historical abuses. As Commissioner Broderick reflected on the news of the day she shared some of her approach to the work she is doing in investigating the current situation and ensuing change in our armed forces – and the power of stories in moving the issue from the head to the heart. She said she could see the penny drop when she brought women who had endured abuse face-to-face with the leaders of our armed forces.
Commissioner Broderick spoke compellingly about enlisting men in positions of power to stand alongside women in order to commit to action as equals for the greater good.
“Gender equality is not a zero sum game. It is an issue of balance with good, fabulous, decent men working with us and standing beside us.”
She called upon both men and women to commit to activism by sharing information on domestic violence at the beginning of any talk they give, wherever they were and regardless of the topic they were there to discuss. She spoke of the importance of acknowledging White Ribbon Day and of the urgent need to take on an issue impacting more women across the world than malnutrition. She also spoke of the 1.2 million Australian women currently living in an intimate relationship characterised by violence.
Commissioner Broderick’s message was deceptively simple. Small actions can have a powerful impact. Sharing a story can change hearts, minds, and consequently, our culture for real improvement.
Commissioner Broderick’s speech was an inspiring reinforcement to me of the power of storytelling, which is one of Ogilvy PR’s underlying tenets. We can all play our part for social change.
Georgina Morris, Account Director Ogilvy PR Health
Yesterday’s Victorian election result was nearly 60 years in the making. For the first time since 1955, Victorians have removed a first term government with Daniel “Dan” Andrews and his Australian Labor Party (ALP) taking the helm of the nation’s second largest state economy.
A highly disciplined and targeted campaign with an ability to motivate grassroots supporters delivered a 3% swing to the ALP who appear to have secured a likely 48 seats to the Coalition’s 39 seats. The election of Green’s candidate, Ellen Sandell, in the seat of Melbourne has made history for the party (their first seat within the Victorian Parliament) and a second seat remains within reach.
While the result was considered a foregone conclusion for many; it’s the voting in the upper house that has put a smile on many political pundits’ faces. A wide range of minor parties including the Shooters, Fishers, Country Alliance and Greens are likely to hold the balance of power after the ALP fell short of a majority. This will add an additional level of complexity for the ALP to navigate in legislating its agenda.
First priorities for the Premier-Elect
Following the heady celebrations of last night, Premier-elect Andrews has woken up to reality and the sobering thought that it appears easier to win an election than to effectively govern in the current economic climate. Victoria owns the highest unemployment rate on the mainland and faces a tapering economy with thousands of jobs to go in the manufacturing industry alone. A growing population is placing additional pressure on infrastructure such as roads, public transport, schools and hospitals at a time when the budgetary pot looks empty.
Chaos is one word to describe the likely Upper House that the Premier-Elect must successfully navigate in order to meet the community’s expectation that things will change for the better.
Within the industry space, the Premier-elect Andrews has a number of commitments to meet including:
The immediate focus for the Premier-elect will be:
The Opposition must regroup
“It’s time for renewal, it is time for change.” With that, former-Premier Denis Napthine stepped down as the head of the Victorian Liberals – a position he only held for some 630 days. The result is a further example that removing a first-term Premier without explanation is likely to hurt you at the ballot box. More importantly, the result demonstrates that the electorate wants action and measured improvement, and is increasingly likely to dump governments who they see as unable to make a marked improvement – and do so quickly – no matter the leader’s popularity.
The majority of next generation of Coalition rising stars have managed to hold their seats resigning this election result to a potentially embarrassing road bump rather than longer-term damage. Former Treasurer, Michael O’Brien, and former Minister for Planning, Matthew Guy, appear to be in a two-horse race for the leadership. They must learn the lesson from this result that Opposition is more than holding the Government to account; you must present real policies to the electorate in order to be seen as a government-in-waiting.
The big question is whether the Liberal and National Parties will move forward as a Coalition, or as separate parties, following the news that the Nationals will review the agreement following the party’s ‘grim’ campaign performance, which has seen them lose at least one seat.
A shudder will be felt in Canberra . . . and Sydney and Queensland
The reverberations from last night’s result will be felt all the way up the Hume Highway into Canberra as well as within the two Coalition-governing states of Queensland and New South Wales who both face the electorate next year for the first time since coming to power. The size of the buffer in these states means that a change in government is unlikely, but a comparable voter backlash would provide both governments with a fright, and a difficult second term.
While state issues dominated the campaign, there can be no doubt that voters have struggled to isolate their concerns and hostility towards the Federal Government, its Budget, and its recent political performances, which will strike fear into the concerns of an already-fretting backbench.
Parliamentary Secretary, Josh Frydenberg called the result a ‘wake up call’ and stated that there are ‘some very serious lessons’ with the party set to ‘go back to the drawing board’. At first glance, the Federal Government may just wish to survive the last sitting week of the year this week, and then take a deep breath when they consider that the next Federal Election remains two years away.
Peta Lange – Associate Director Parker & Partners
This month, the Howorth team were tasked with the job of launching the new Al Jazeera brand campaign into the Australian market. The campaign, Hear the Human Story, focuses on the importance of telling human stories without prejudice, in the most authentic way possible. It was launched at Quay restaurant, where a cross section of influential journalists, academics and NGO’s came together for a celebration of courageous storytelling.
Guests of honour were the family of detained Al Jazeera journalist Peter Greste, who heard Al Jazeera English Managing Director Al Anstey deliver an impassioned address calling for the release of Peter and his colleagues, Baher Mohamed and Mohamed Fahmy. The keynote speech was given by Professor Gillian Triggs, President of the Australian Human Rights Commission, who spoke about the vital role the media plays in raising awareness of human rights issues that might otherwise go unnoticed.
In the lead up to the event, the Howorth team arranged a comprehensive media program for Al Anstey, who was interviewed by ABC TV breakfast, ABC Radio National breakfast, ABC 702, ABC Radio PM, SBS, AAP, The Guardian, B&T, Adnews, Mumbrella and Marketing Magazine.
The Al Jazeera team left us with some kind words before heading back to Doha, “Thanks for doing such a great job for our trip to Sydney. Your organisation, planning, and execution of the event and all the PR was excellent. Well done. And thank you.”
The PAA’s are Ogilvy PR’s worldwide internal awards where we share and celebrate the best work from across the globe.
Ogilvy PR Australia has won Public Affairs category for our entry titled “Ogilvy PR Australia joins up with Microsoft to ignite an innovation movement”.
Microsoft and Ogilvy PR partnered to create a compelling thought leadership program on innovation that would be unique and actionable, to help Australia improve its innovation potential.
First, a position was developed that was based on research and analysis of policy trends of global leaders. This found that whilst Australia generally has the right conditions in place to innovate, it happens in pockets and silos. Joined-Up Innovation (JUI) is Microsoft’s approach to addressing this problem by improving connections within our innovation ecosystem to create a better environment for all Australians to innovate.
The JUI vision was tested by designing and convening a roundtable discussion with hand-picked Australian innovation experts, who also developed a set of recommendations for accelerating innovation in Australia. The first phase of the Joined-Up innovation campaign was then rolled out internally and externally via a public relations campaign that is still generating conversations today.
This campaign also was awarded a 2014 Gold Asia Pac Sabre Award.
More on Joined-Up Innovation here.
We are continuing to work on the program with launch elements planned across the next 18 months. A very big congratulations to the Microsoft team on this well-deserved win.