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‘Whizz-kid’ forms right-wing Austrian government

Sebastian Kurz greets voters in Graz on September 4th. Photo: AFP

Austria's conservatives..

Sebastian Kurz greets voters in Graz on September 4th. Photo: AFP

Austria's conservatives and the far-right agreed a coalition deal on Friday, two months after elections that saw the Alpine country move to the right and capping a year of successes for Europe's nationalists.

The accord between Sebastian Kurz's People's Party (OeVP) and the anti-immigration Freedom Party (FPOe) announced late Friday will see Kurz, 31, become chancellor and also the world's youngest leader.

"We are happy that we have reached this agreement. Tomorrow (Saturday) we will inform the president about our programme and our team," Kurz, foreign minister in the outgoing government, told reporters in Vienna.

"Voters gave us a clear mandate to take into account their concerns, particularly when it comes their security," FPOe chief Heinz-Christian Strache told the same news conference.

The OeVP came first in the October 15th vote with 31.5 percent after Kurz, nicknamed "wunderwuzzi" ("whizz-kid"), rebranded the staid party as his own personal "movement", promising to get tough on immigration and lower taxes.

The anti-immigration FPOe came third with 26 percent of the vote, double the stunning 13 percent notched by Alternative for Germany (AfD) in elections the month before.

Both the OeVP and the FPOe ran on promises of cutting benefits for all foreigners, even from the rest of the EU, slashing bureaucracy and stopping the European Union having too much say in national affairs.

They stoked concerns about newcomers following a record influx of migrants in 2015 and fatigue with the previous unhappy "grand coalition" of the OeVP with the centre-left Social Democrats (SPOe).

This was mirrored elsewhere, with Geert Wilders' Freedom Party now the second-largest in the Netherlands, France's National Front in a runoff for the presidency in May and AfD entering the Bundestag and re-drawing Germany's political map.

Real power

But the FPOe is rare in western Europe in having translated its ballot box success into real power. Last year it came close to winning the largely ceremonial presidency.

Strache, 48, is set to become deputy chancellor. According to Der Standard's online edition, the party has also secured the interior and the defence ministries.

A seasoned diplomat close to the FPOe, although not a member, is set to be foreign minister. The OeVP will obtain the finance, economy and justice ministries, amongst others, Der Standard said.

The paper said in an editorial that coupled with an expected "extremely restrictive refugees policy", it was "sinister and worrying" that all intelligence services will be FPOe-controlled.

The last time the FPOe entered government, in 2000 under controversial then-leader Joerg Haider, now dead, Austria was briefly ostracised within the European Union.

This time though the reaction is likely to be much more muted with the FPOe seen as having mellowed and with Europe more inured to right-wing parties.

Several different groups including the anti-fascist "Offensive against the Right" have said they plan to stage demonstrations on Monday in Vienna.

'Dangerous' Merkel

The FPOe, which has a partnership with Russian President Vladimir Putin's ruling party, wants EU sanctions on Moscow lifted and says Islam is not part of Austria.

In 2016 Strache called German Chancellor Angela Merkel "the most dangerous woman in Europe" over her open-door migrants policy, and warned of "civil war in medium term" because of immigration.

The FPOe is also ambivalent about the European Union.

But Kurz said on Thursday that the "pro-European" stance of the incoming government "has been secured". He reportedly aims to retain control of Austria's EU affairs.

Further details on the new coalition's plans were expected Saturday once the two parties approve the agreement. The government will be sworn in next week.

One notable measure to have emerged so far from the coalition talks is a pledge to scrap a law that would have banned smoking from all bars and restaurants from May 2018.

The parties are also said to have agreed on cutting tax and other salary charges and loosening labour laws. The FPOe also wants more "direct democracy".

By Simon Sturdee

Original Article

The post 'Whizz-kid' forms right-wing Austrian government appeared first on News Wire Now.

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Australia

Argonaut Resources directors show faith in company by participating in oversubscribed SPP

Argonaut Resources NL (ASX:ARE) directors have demonstrated their faith in the company’s copper-zinc strategy by participating in the recently closed share purchase plan (SPP).

Independent non-executive chairman Patrick Elliot purchased more than 4.465 million shares at 0.55 cents per share in an indirect interest.

He now holds 5,876,159 shares in that interest with another 20,324,574 held in a separate indirect interest.

Independent non-executive chairman Malcolm Richmond acquired more than 5.454 million shares in a direct interest, increasing the number held in this interest to almost 15 million with another 1 million held in an indirect interest.

Overwhelming response to SPP[hhmc]
The company was overwhelmed by the response to its SPP which closed early and more than twice oversubscribed with the target subsequently increased to $2.5 million from $1.2 million.

Subscriptions in excess of $3 million were received and as a result, the SPP was closed with immediate effect.

Money ..

Argonaut Resources NL (ASX:ARE) directors have demonstrated their faith in the company’s copper-zinc strategy by participating in the recently closed share purchase plan (SPP).

Independent non-executive chairman Patrick Elliot purchased more than 4.465 million shares at 0.55 cents per share in an indirect interest.

He now holds 5,876,159 shares in that interest with another 20,324,574 held in a separate indirect interest.

Independent non-executive chairman Malcolm Richmond acquired more than 5.454 million shares in a direct interest, increasing the number held in this interest to almost 15 million with another 1 million held in an indirect interest.

Overwhelming response to SPP


The company was overwhelmed by the response to its SPP which closed early and more than twice oversubscribed with the target subsequently increased to $2.5 million from $1.2 million.

Subscriptions in excess of $3 million were received and as a result, the SPP was closed with immediate effect.

Money raised under this SPP and from the recently completed $2.7 million share placeRead More – Source

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Strickland Metals shares jump 39% ahead of drilling base metal target near DeGrussa

Strickland Metals Ltd (ASX:STK) shares surged 39% today ahead of its maiden drilling program at the Doolgunna Project, which will include a diamond drilling program that is likely to begin by the end of this month.

As a part of the program, a minimum of four diamond holes will be drilled to a depth of 500 metres to test a VMS target similar to the nearby DeGrussa deposit of Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR).

Heritage survey[hhmc]
Exploration activity has recommenced on the Doolgunna Project following completion of heritage surveys to allow land access to areas where the company wishes to complete exploration drilling.

The target for drilling is a compelling base metal prospect that exhibits geological characteristics that are interpreted to be similar to Sandfire Resources’ DeGrussa deposit about 30 kilometres to the east of the project.

The prospect has a 3-kilometre-long electromagnetic conductor that lies below an outcropping copper-zinc gossan that has been mapped over a 1.2-kilomet..

Strickland Metals Ltd (ASX:STK) shares surged 39% today ahead of its maiden drilling program at the Doolgunna Project, which will include a diamond drilling program that is likely to begin by the end of this month.

As a part of the program, a minimum of four diamond holes will be drilled to a depth of 500 metres to test a VMS target similar to the nearby DeGrussa deposit of Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR).

Heritage survey


Exploration activity has recommenced on the Doolgunna Project following completion of heritage surveys to allow land access to areas where the company wishes to complete exploration drilling.

The target for drilling is a compelling base metal prospect that exhibits geological characteristics that are interpreted to be similar to Sandfire Resources’ DeGrussa deposit about 30 kilometres to the east of the project.

The prospect has a 3-kilometre-long electromagnetic conductor that lies below an outcropping copper-zinc gossan that has been mapped over a 1.2-kilometre strike.

Diamond core drilling


The company plans to start the diamond core drilling by the end of this month.

A multi-purpose drill rig has been contracted to enable the minimum planned program wRead More – Source

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Australia

Pan Asia Metals has positive discussions on plans for Thai lithium project

Pan Asia Metals Ltd (ASX:PAM) has had positive discussions with authorities in Phang Nga Province, Thailand, including the provincial government, for its Reung Kiet Lithium Project.

PAM has submitted a presentation covering all aspects of the project including methods of ongoing exploration, conceptual mining and concentrate production, and the potential for downstream value-adding industries in Phang Nga and Thailand.

The presentation and subsequent discussions were aimed at assisting Phang Nga Provincial Government in their considerations for the proposed mining and industrial development areas.

Provincial Government discussions[hhmc]
Pan Asia was recently invited by the chief executive officer of the Phang Nga Provincial Administrative Organisation (PAO), a Phang Nga Provincial Government coordinating body, to represent PAM and the Reung Kiet Lithium Project.

The meeting was also attended by the head of Phang Nga Provincial Industry along with the representatives of the Phang Ng..

Pan Asia Metals Ltd (ASX:PAM) has had positive discussions with authorities in Phang Nga Province, Thailand, including the provincial government, for its Reung Kiet Lithium Project.

PAM has submitted a presentation covering all aspects of the project including methods of ongoing exploration, conceptual mining and concentrate production, and the potential for downstream value-adding industries in Phang Nga and Thailand.

The presentation and subsequent discussions were aimed at assisting Phang Nga Provincial Government in their considerations for the proposed mining and industrial development areas.

Provincial Government discussions


Pan Asia was recently invited by the chief executive officer of the Phang Nga Provincial Administrative Organisation (PAO), a Phang Nga Provincial Government coordinating body, to represent PAM and the Reung Kiet Lithium Project.

The meeting was also attended by the head of Phang Nga Provincial Industry along with the representatives of the Phang Nga Provincial Public Works and Town Planning Office.

Phang Nga Provincial Industry head has been appointed by the Phang Nga governor as chairman of the Phang Nga New Town Planning Committee.

During the meeting, the chairman of the committee conveyed its support for the Reung Kiet Lithium Project.

PAO wants to ensure that the requirements of the Reung Kiet project are incorporated into the town planning committee’s zoning plans to ensure that the project can progress once exploration and feasibility results prove positive.

“Can bring opportunities”


PAM managing director Paul Lock said: “We have been working hard in Phang Nga province and we are very happy with the positive reception that the Reung Kiet Lithium Project is receiving from the Phang Nga Provincial Government and surrounding communities.

“Reung Kiet is strategically located and based on peer feasibility work the project is positioned to potentially be one of the lowest-cost suppliers of lithium chemicals in the global peer group.

“This is a project that can bring substantial opportunities and value to Phang Nga and Thailand.”

Pan Asia is planning its second Reung Kiet drilling program with expectations that this will begin in the coming months following the conclusion of the current Khao Soon drilling program.

Potential cost curve leader


Reung Kiet is a hard rock project with lepidolite rich pegmatites chiefly composed of quartz, albite and lepidolite with minor cassiterite and tantalite as well as other accessory minerals including some rare earth.

Lepidolite does not require roasting and has a suite of by-products which are recoverable at the concentrator and processing stages of the flow sheet.

Peer feasibility work has Read More – Source

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