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Business news and updates: Daily roundup (August 9, 2021)

Dynamic Business brings you a daily rundown of the most recent business news and developments from Australia and around the world. Here’s the roundup for August 9: 

Wesfarmers, Jemena seal deal to supply zero-emissions hydrogen for transport

Under a landmark agreement between Australian conglomerate Wesfarmers and gas giant Jemena, zero-emissions hydrogen will be made available for the first time in 2022 for fuel-cell trucks, buses, and vehicles across New South Wales.  

Jemena intends to deliver hydrogen generated by its $15 million Western Sydney Green Gas Project to Wesfarmers-owned Coregas.

Agriculture visa will be ‘up and running by Christmas’, minister says

According to Minister David Littleproud, the farm visa will be in place by the end of the year. In October 2018, the Prime Minister pledged to develop an agriculture visa, which the sector has long desired in order to provide a harvest workforce to pick fruit and vegetables.

Companies that received JobKeeper to remain secret after government rejects bill

Big corporations that got JobKeeper will be able to keep the financial support a secret, thanks to the federal Coalition’s rejection of a push to make it public and the Labor Party’s retreat from insisting on it.   

At least $4.6 billion was distributed through the JobKeeper wage subsidy scheme to businesses whose earnings increased during the critical months of COVID-19 lockdowns last year.   

Enterprises such as retailer Harvey Norman have been put under pressure to repay the money after making profits in 2020, despite the fact that the wage subsidy was designed for companies experiencing a 30% drop in turnover.

Tesla excluded from Biden’s electric vehicle summit

At the White House, President Joe Biden celebrated automakers’ ambitious electric vehicle targets. General Motors and Ford executives, as well as Stellantis, joined Biden. 

Tesla, on the other hand, was not invited. “Yeah, seems odd that Tesla wasn’t invited,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk tweeted. 

One possible explanation for the seeming snub is the United Auto Workers union. The UAW represents workers at GM, Ford, and Stellantis, but has so far been unsuccessful in organising Tesla workers at the EV maker’s Fremont, California, plant.

US business lobby Biden for a trade deal with China

More than 30 business groups, including the Chamber of Commerce, the Business Roundtable, the Semiconductor Industry Association, and representatives from retail, agriculture, and manufacturing, urged Biden to lower tariffs and reopen trade discussions with China. 

The letter stated: “A worker-centred trade agenda should account for the costs that US and Chinese tariffs imposed on Americans here and at home and remove tariffs that harm U.S. interests.”

Boeing eyes China’s approval for 737 MAX

The world’s major aviation regulators, including the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), and Transport Canada (TC), have all approved Boeing for commercial usage after the company reportedly addressed all aircraft safety issues. 

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), on the other hand, is one of the few major aviation agencies that have yet to reapprove its operation. 

After two catastrophic incidents in Ethiopia and Indonesia which claimed 346 lives, China was the first country to ground the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in 2019.

Saudi Aramco sees H1 earnings climb to $47 billion

Saudi Arabia’s oil-producing company, Aramco, announced a net income of around $47 billion for the first half of the year, double of what it earned over the same period last year when the coronavirus grounded travel and pummelled global demand for oil. 

This puts Aramco back squarely where it was before the pandemic struck and sunk earnings to $23.3 billion in the first six months of 2020.

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Yajush Gupta

Yajush Gupta

Yajush is a journalist at Dynamic Business. He previously worked with Reuters as a business correspondent and holds a postgrad degree in print journalism.

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