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Speech: Export Finance and Insurance Corporation Amendment (Direct Lending and Other Measures) Bill 2014

Senator RHIANNON (New South Wales) (09:43): The first part of the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation Amendment (Direct Lending and Other Measures) Bill 2014 does extend the mandate of Efic's activities from supporting the export of capital goods, to all goods. So we are really going from a situation where so many of Efic's loans went for large mining projects and the infrastructure that supported them, and other related projects, to really being about services, consumer goods and many aspects of what are called SMEs, small and medium sized enterprises.

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Estimates: Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Legislation Committee (Export Finance and Insurance Corporation)

CHAIR: We will now move on to the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation.

Senator RHIANNON: Mr Hunter, in your letter to the Canberra Times on the ninth of this month you stated:

EFIC's independent directors have additional directorships within the finance community.
I am actually really tight for time; the chair is on my tail. So, if that is not a short answer, can you take this on notice? Can you state what those additional directorships are for your independent directors?

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Estimates: Education and Employment Legislation Committee (Department of Education and Training)

Senator RHIANNON: You said earlier, Ms Paul, I think it was on 25 November, that it was determined that the planned advertising campaign complied with guidelines. Principle 4 of the department's guidelines for expenditure on advertising state that they should be 'instigated on the basis of a demonstrated need…' Other than the government's desperation to pass its legislation, what was the demonstrated need for the advertising campaign?

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Estimates: Education and Employment Legislation Committee (Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency)

Senator RHIANNON: Thank you, Professor Saunders. I noted you said that the staff numbers are currently 56, down 10. What were the staff numbers when TEQSA started?

Prof. Saunders : We had a staff level of about 100—not when we started, but we built up to staff level of about 100.

Senator RHIANNON: In what year, please?

Prof. Saunders : We started in 2012, so it would have been sometime during 2012 that those numbers built up.

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Estimates: Education and Employment Legislation Committee (Department of Education and Training)

Senator RHIANNON: This morning when we were trying to explore some of the advertising issues, I asked some questions that I would like to return to. Principle 4 of the department's guidelines for expenditure on advertising states, 'Any campaign must be instigated on the basis of a demonstrated need.' It is a quote you would obviously know well. Other than the government's desperation to pass its legislation, what was the demonstrated need for this advertising campaign?

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Estimates: Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee (Australian Electoral Commission)

Lee Rhiannon 24 Feb 2015

Senator RHIANNON: On 18 October 2011, Mr Rogers, your predecessor, Mr Ed Killesteyn, told estimates in relation to disclosures coming in past the deadline:

We have ... put on record a consideration that ... there would be value in consideration being given to an administrative penalty, which we believe might assist in compliance. But that is for strict objective penalties, such as late lodgement. There are other areas of offences such as misleading statements and so forth ...
Do you agree with the previous commissioner's comments?

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