The aim of our Global Issues Forum is to hear the opinions of qualified people on relevant Global Issues

Please note, The Committee has decided NOT to continue holding any more Global Issues Forums at 8.45 on meeting days. The view is that TWO 45 minute speakers is TOO much and in any case the numbers that attended these excellent presentations were insufficient (30-40 attendees). These speakers should have been speaking to the WHOLE CLUB.

August 2017 – Chris Renwick, Former CEO Hamersley Iron on – Australian Iron Ore Industry

July 2017 – Jim Minifie, Grattan Institute – Australian Policy in a low growth world

April 2017 – Michael Heffernan.

Here is a summary of Michael Heffernan’s interesting and positive talk – courtesy of John Bushby:

Michael promised a comprehensive assessment of the effects of both Brexit and Donald Trump (not to mention the triumph of the Bulldogs in the 2016 season). There were initial fears, he said, that Brexit would mean mass exodus of British businesses and jobs going to Europe, that Britain would suddenly slip into recession and bad things would happen. “In fact, it is the reverse. Since Brexit, the economy has been the best performing economy in terms of growth in GDP of all European countries.

On Trump, he said, we all remember the outrageous promises during the election campaign. “But one ingredient that did not get much attention was his economic policies,” Michael said. “It was not until the acceptance speech that he mentioned that he intended to spend something like $1 trillion on much -needed infrastructure spending on roads, ports, hospitals, bridges, railways and the link.”
Australia should do the same as Donald Trump and embark on a major wave of much-needed infrastructure spending

Bottom Line: the good economic plans of Donald Trump are more likely to be put in place while his harsher social agenda has been blunted. However, what the Trump ascendancy and what Brexit has done is provide a circuit-breaker to the now tired policies implemented since the GFC.

In Michael’s view, Australia should do the same as Donald Trump and embark on a major wave of much needed infrastructure spending on roads and rail in particular such as in Melbourne with a circle road, a further Yarra crossing and a rail link to the airport,  just to name a few. The same could be replicated in other states to enhance Australia’s economic growth. “Fortunately there are some signs that this may be happening,” Michael concluded.