In this podcast Steve Knott, AMMA Chief Executive is interviewed by Peta Credlin on Sky News Live. The interview focuses on the implications of the potential merger of the CFMEU and MUA for Australia’s resources and energy industry.

Key points raised by Knott included:

  • the threat to the resources supply chain and Australia’s export revenues if the merger is allowed to proceed.
  • the unprecedented financial resources available to the proposed new union which would allow it to continually break the law, flout the courts and pay fines as a cost of doing business.
  • the need for a Public Interest Test for proposed union mergers to be legislated by the government within the next two weeks.

Credlin played an excerpt of a video made by the CFMEU to promote the merger and noted she thought the CFMEU was proud of its violence, intimidation and coercion as shown in the video.

Knott noted that the CFMEU had coverage of drag line operators, machinery and locomotive lines, meaning these unions had the ability to target the entire supply chain and damage economic activity right across the country.

Credlin mentioned the Fair Work Commission and its imminent approval of the merger. She added the Coalition Government had promised to introduce by legislation a public interest test, citing the legislation is sitting in the Parliament.

Knott said both AMMA and the Master Builders Association have represented the employer community in this matter and were hoping the legislation would be passed within the next few weeks.

Knott cited the size and scale of the union and stated it had $150m worth of turnover, 20 or 30 times the turnover of most business groups.

Credlin mentioned Opposition Leader Bill Shorten’s statement at the National Press Club, stating the unions were back in town and he was dissatisfied with the Fair Work Commission, which is a Labor creation.

Credlin mentioned Mr Shorten’s backflip on his support of jobs in North Queensland arising from the Adani project during the recent state election campaign. She added he was fighting with the Greens in Victoria in the Seat of Batman. Knott warned there would be implications if the broader business community doesn’t start pushing back on the Green-activist groups and better highlight the benefits to Australians from resources and energy projects.

See a segment of the interview here.

Download the Credlin Show Tuesday 6 February.