The FT’s Lex on taxing mining companies:
A 40 per cent resource tax was Australian prime minister Kevin Rudd’s undoing. Chilean president Sebastián Piñera, whose proposed tax hike is linked to the price of copper, Chile’s biggest export, should avoid that fate. Australia’s Henry tax was reviled by miners, including BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Xstrata and subsequently watered down. Yet Chile’s tax has evinced no such reaction from copper producers, including – unsurprisingly – state-owned Codelco, the world’s biggest producer. The differing reaction is best explained by the way the tax was proposed, even if the popular justifications are similar.
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A new panel of on global sustainability was revealed on Monday by Ban Ki-moon, United Nations’ secretary-general, asked to ”think big” about ways to “lift people out of poverty while tackling climate change and ensuring that economic development is environmentally friendly”.
Quite a task. Excuse the cynicism, but why not add world peace to the list? Just for good measure.
The 21-person unpaid panel is a mix of serving and former leaders and ministers, including Han Seung-soo, former prime minister of the Republic of Korea, and Sheikh Abdallah Bin Zayid Al Nahayan, foreign minister of the United Arab Emirates, as well as representatives from the private sector and civil society from developed and developing countries.