News Wrap

IN THIS morning’s News Wrap: BHP spinoff branded South32; Rio Tinto takes on taxman in Pilbara remote housing spat; and responsible fraccing is good, says US energy secretary.

Lou Caruana

BHP spinoff branded South32

BHP Billiton says the company it plans to demerge in 2015 will have global aspirations, despite bestowing it with a name that recognises its focus on the southern hemisphere, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.

The proposed company will be named South32, to acknowledge the line of latitude upon which its major operations in South Africa and Australia are located.

The new brand and its yellow zest coloured logo of woven perpendicular lines was launched on Monday evening, 16 weeks after the demerger was announced under the working title of Newco.

Rio Tinto takes on taxman in Pilbara remote housing spat

Rio Tinto wants the Australian Taxation Office to hand over nearly $600,000 in tax credits for its remote housing costs in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, in a battle playing out in the Federal Court, according to the Australian Financial Review.

The case relates to just one quarter of 2010. If Rio wins, it could result in the giant miner demanding more refunds and trigger copycat claims by other employer-provided housing used in mining and defence communities.

Responsible fraccing is good, says US energy secretary

Mistakes have been made in extracting coal seam gas, or fraccing, but it is possible to use the resource in an environmentally responsible way, according to former United States Energy Secretary Steven Chu, according to the Australian Financial Review.

“I think many things in energy are over-politicised. That’s one of them,” he said. “It has to be thoughtfully regulated. I emphasise the word thoughtfully. Not regulated in some blind, stupid way.”

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