THE Joint Standing Committee on Migration will hold a public hearing in Sydney on Monday April 12 at the NSW Parliament.
Committee Chair Julian Leeser MP said, "Following the tabling of the interim report on 18 March 2021, the focus of the committee will be the remaining terms of reference such as the skills lists, the administrative requirements for Australian businesses and the complexity of Australia’s skilled migration program.
"Australia has always been an attractive destination for migrants and the current challenge is to ensure that we can streamline processes to make it easier for Australian businesses to find and hire the skilled workers they need," Mr Leeser said.
"Hearing from the peak associations as well as their small businesses will assist the committee in its consideration of the issues at all levels."
More details on the inquiry and the hearing program are available on the Committee website.
Public hearing details
Date: Monday 12 April 2021
Time: 9am to 5pm
Location: Macquarie Room, NSW Parliament (not open to the public)
The hearing will be broadcast live at aph.gov.au/live.
THE Joint Standing Committee on Trade and Investment Growth recently commenced an Inquiry into the prudential regulation of investment in Australia’s export industries.
The inquiry is investigating the potential impact of changes in practices by banks, insurers and superannuation funds, as well as the advice and guidance provided by financial regulators, on the investment opportunities for Australian exporters.
Committee Chair, George Christensen MP, said the committee was particularly interested in hearing from businesses that have experienced difficulty in sourcing funding or insurance for their export businesses.
‘It is vital that the committee hear how changes in practices or guidance from financial institutions and regulators may impact on Australia’s exporting businesses, in sectors such as resources, agriculture and services. Businesses should be reassured that they can make a submission confidentially, and we can also arrange for hearings to be held in private."
Submissions from interested individuals, businesses and organisations are invited by Friday, April 30, 2021. Requests can be made for a submission to be kept confidential, or to be published with a name withheld if required.
More information about the inquiry, including the full terms of reference and further details on how to lodge a submission, is available on the committee’s webpage. The preferred method of receiving submissions is by electronic format lodged online using a My Parliament account.
MORE INVESTORS Are prioritising investments that generate positive social outcomes and avoiding or divesting assets that harm the environment or community such as fossil fuels and gambling.
Stoic Venture Capital Partner Geoff Waring said more investors were turning to socially responsible investing strategies that allocate more towards companies in sectors such as healthcare and technology addressing climate change.
“Recent disasters such as the pandemic and NSW floods and bushfires have led more investors even further towards socially responsible investing,” Dr Waring said.
“Investors want to know that their money is working towards positive social goals and are seeking more rigorous reporting from companies about how they achieve those goals.”
Another area investors are keenly focusing on is diversity and inclusion in line with increasing community concern about progress towards equality, he said.
“Start-ups that rank higher in terms of diversity and inclusion are preferred among companies whose technology has positive social impacts,” Dr Waring said.
“Investors understand that companies which prioritise gender diversity and supporting more inclusive places for LGBTQI+ are more socially sustainable in the longer term.
“Investors are taking proactive steps to urge fund managers and companies to do more and be more transparent about advancing real change.”
Dr Waring said to answer the sustainability wishes of the public, large fund managers and individual wealthy sophisticated investors are looking at allocating more to venture capital managers as they invest in nimble and fast-growing start-ups that target big unmet environmental and social needs.
“The high performing venture capital firms will be those that concentrate on innovative and economically viable solutions to society’s big problems,” he said.
“This is seen as a more socially responsible alternative to listed equity funds that focus on more established companies using mature technologies with poorer environmental and social outcomes.
Dr Waring said socially responsible venture capital investing could generate attractive returns, but it was important that investors were careful when selecting the right venture capital managers.
“You must be rigorous in assessing whether a venture capital manager invests in genuine socially responsible start-ups, and still has the ability to generate superior returns” he said.
“These are managers that select companies who value diversity along with solving social problems or who offer sustainable solutions.
“In the long-run these companies offer investors attractive returns along with the comfort that their funds are working towards the greater good.”
About Stoic Venture Capital
Stoic Venture Capital provides financing for early-stage companies, particularly those arising from university research. Stoic is unconditionally registered as an Early-Stage Venture Capital Limited Partnership (ESVCLP) and takes a collaborative approach to investing in the highest potential companies. Atlas Advisors Australia AFOF is the major limited partner for the Fund.
Stoic Venture Capital’s investments include:
Cardihab (Digital cardiac rehab);
Ena Therapeutics (Enhancing immunity to fight respiratory diseases);
Certa Therapeutics (Drug for treating kidney disease);
Wildlife Drones (Drones tracking animals);
Agerris (Agricultural robots);
Kinoxis (Addiction rehabilitation);
Occurx (Drug to treat eye damage from diabetes);
Que Oncology (Breast cancer side effects treatment);
Ferronova (Magnetic nanoparticles for cancer diagnosis); and
Q-Sera (Blood collection);
PERKii (Probiotic drink);
Occurx (Eye damage from diabetes).
THE NSW Government’s digital licensing revolution continues, with trade licences to be added to the digital wallet within the Service NSW app.
Minister for Better Regulation and Innovation, Kevin Anderson said under the next stage of the state’s digital transformation, the NSW Government would digitise the licence card for more than 30 Home Building and SafeWork licence categories.
“Currently tradies are required to carry anywhere up to 15 plastic licence cards with them on the job. It's an outdated system that is costing tradies time and money,” Mr Anderson said.
“Under these changes tradies will finally be able to say goodbye to the plastic licences clogging up their wallets and have quick and easy access to all the work licences they need on their smart phones.”
The White Card – which permits the holder to undertake construction work in NSW – is the first category to go digital, followed by a range of other categories including Home Building industry contractors, supervisors and tradesmen, and high-risk work licences.
Minister for Customer Service Victor Dominello said the reforms build on the success of the digital driver licence, which has been downloaded by more than 2.54 million motorists since its launch in October 2019.
“There are close to 1.5 million site managers, surveyors and tradies who hold a White Card in NSW and whose lives will be made easier by this reform,” Mr Dominello said.
“We know people love the convenience of a digital licence and this is another example of NSW leading the nation on digital transformation.”
Customers will need a MyServiceNSW account and to download the Service NSW app in order to display their digital White Card.
More information about the Digital Trade Licence program is available at www.nsw.gov.au/nsw-government/projects-and-initiatives/digital-trade-licence