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From the Desk of the Executive Director

Ken Phillips is co-founder and Executive Director of Independent Contractors of Australia. He is a published authority on independent contractor issues and directs research on related commercial and trade practices issues. Through his numerous articles in newspapers and think-tank and academic journals, Ken is known for approaching issues from outside normal perspectives and is frequently sought out for media comment.

How Abbott is rebuilding the construction landscape

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

There are plenty of naïve people at the big end of town who haven’t yet realised the extent to which the Abbott government is changing the landscape of business in Australia.

The first dramatic signals came early this year when the government announced the end of corporate welfare. This had substance, with the rejection of taxpayer bailouts to Holden, Toyota, Coca Cola’s subsidiary SPC Ardmona and Qantas. The message to corporations was straightforward: grow up and stop your dependency on taxpayers! More...


Reaping the rewards of a fair go for small business

Monday, April 28, 2014

The Abbott government’s review into competition laws organised by Small Business Minister Bruce Billson shouldn’t just be considered as a revisiting of the laws' technicalities. The design of competition laws say a lot about the moral authority of the very system of market capitalism.  More...


Abbott’s competition review will weigh on big business

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

There’s concern from large business interests that in the competition review being organised by the Minister for Small Business, Bruce Billson, big business is going to be unfairly targeted, perhaps even clobbered.

Reflecting this view, Stephen Bartholomeusz last week expressed relief that the review panel is a “surprisingly balanced one" (Muscle and might: A panel to protect Australian competition, March 27). Further, that “the review won’t be loaded against competitors purely because of their size.” More...


Mall for one but not for all

Monday, January 20, 2014

You’ve got to feel sorry for the billionaires and highly paid executives of the multi-billion dollar corporations who own and control Australia’s major shopping centres. At least that’s what you’d take from the article (Mall owners are wrapped in red tape) in Business Spectator last week by their representative lobbyist, Milton Cockburn of the Shopping Centre Council. More...


Saying no to corporate welfare

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has promised to do away with corporate welfare. Thank goodness!

Corporate welfare is effectively a business prop, most frequently for big businesses that aren’t well run. In the last 16 years $30 billion has been given to car manufacturers. What’s that achieved?  Mostly wasted money and painful delays to the ultimate closures of Ford and Holden! More...


Political card tricks

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Small business people lose out under Abbott government. Incompetent big business wins

Last week the Abbott government did two things that signal it as a big business, big union, big government operation. This is probably surprising to most people who thought the Coalition was a union hater. But not so!  More...


Caution will reign in the Abbott government

Friday, September 20, 2013

Now that it’s clear that Labor and the Greens have lost control of the Senate as well as government, the nature of Tony Abbott as national leader comes into sharper focus. As prime minister, Abbott has the numbers (with reasoned Senate negotiation) to effectively govern.   More...



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