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Styrian dream or stygian nightmare? Austrias Brexit car roulette

Brexit could also hurt Austria's tourism industry, some fear. Photo: Austrian Tourist Board

In manufacturing, tourism and the car industry, Brexits spectre looms over several key Austrian regions and sectors, Alex Macbeth writes.

Styria, Austrias automobile manufacturing hub, could benefit from Japanese British-based car makers relocating to the southeast Austrian region. But the southeastern Austrian region could also face its own Stygian nightmare if car supply chains are destroyed in a no-deal scenario.

“The region of Styria has an important position for the economic relationship with the British. Jaguar Land Rover started building cars there in 2017, which has been a tremendous boost to the Austrian economy,” Barbara Kolm, director of the Austrian Economics Institute, told The Local, commenting on the growing car hub around the city of Graz.

“Austria will probably be hit less by Brexit than many other EU member states – the German ifo Institute expects a rela..

Brexit could also hurt Austria's tourism industry, some fear. Photo: Austrian Tourist Board

In manufacturing, tourism and the car industry, Brexits spectre looms over several key Austrian regions and sectors, Alex Macbeth writes.

Styria, Austrias automobile manufacturing hub, could benefit from Japanese British-based car makers relocating to the southeast Austrian region. But the southeastern Austrian region could also face its own Stygian nightmare if car supply chains are destroyed in a no-deal scenario.

“The region of Styria has an important position for the economic relationship with the British. Jaguar Land Rover started building cars there in 2017, which has been a tremendous boost to the Austrian economy,” Barbara Kolm, director of the Austrian Economics Institute, told The Local, commenting on the growing car hub around the city of Graz.

“Austria will probably be hit less by Brexit than many other EU member states – the German ifo Institute expects a relatively modest decline of GDP of 0.1 percent because of Brexit,” added Kolm.

Nearly 50 per cent of all Austrian exports to the UK are in manufacturing. And it is Austrias car industry that is perhaps most exposed to the roulette effects of Britains departure from the European Union.

“The only sector that might profit from Brexit is the car industry, especially in Styria,” Barbara Kolm told The Local. “Jaguar Land Rover could outsource even more of its production to Austria after Brexit, and the industry hopes to be able to lure Toyota to Austria as well. Fiat Chrysler has already announced that it will move its production of tractors to Styria.”

But Brexit could also turn out to be a two-edged sword for Austrian car makers. “All of this could just as easily go wrong as well, for example if Jaguar Land Rover instead were to decide to move completely back to Britain in the long run,” added Kolm.

Austria has a trade surplus with the UK and more than 100 Austrian companies are nevertheless active in the UK market – “among them Novomatic, Wienerberger, and Zumtobel,” adds Kolm.

Alpine states such as Salzburg, where tourism is a key industry, could feel a heavier Brexit burden. Nearly one million Brits, mainly winter ski tourists, visit Austria each year.

“Especially during the winter months in the Alpine regions, tourism is of substantial scale and must not be neglected,” Kolm told The Local. British visitors constitute the 4th largest visiting national group in terms of overnight stays.

Seasonal Businesses in Travel (SBIT) is a lobby group of more than 100 British tourist operators, created in response to Brexit, that aims to “increase awareness of the potential impact of Brexit on the UK outgoing travel industry,” through lobbying of “UK and European governments.”

When it comes to financial services however, experts agree that Austria is unlikely to win or lose much in the battle to lure financial services firms from the UK.

Most major Austrian banks, such as Raiffeisenbank, are fairly insulated against Brexit because they are focused on Central and Eastern Europe, Richard Grieveson, an analyst with The Vienna Institute for International Economic Studies (WIIW), told The Local. Only the few intimately intertwined with the City of London could suffer.

Vienna has also emerged as a potential new low-cost aviation hub in light of Brexit. EasyJet announced that it will operate its new airline easyJet Europe out of Vienna. All of the budget carriers EU27 aircraft will be re-registered at the new hub by March 2019, according to easyJet.

Ryanair is also looking to Austria as a post-Brexit stepping stone to the European market, having taken a stake in LaudaMotion, the low-cost airline founded by Austrian former Formula 1 world champion and airline pioneer Niki Lauda, reports The Local Austria.

Beyond the challenges in each sector, Austrias current coalition government could also be an unpredictable force in the Brexit negotiations.

“With the centre-right and far-right in coalition, you see the implications on policy and it makes them unpredictable on Brexit,” Richard Grieveson, WIIWs analyst, told The Local.

On July 1, Austria – traditionally a mainstream, moderate, member state – will take over the revolving six-month EU presidency.

Austria is most likely to use its term at the presidency to exert pressure on its neighbours rather than to get any special Brexit concessions, says Grieveson. While Germany is calling for all member states to make a larger contribution to the post-Brexit EU budget and fill the deficit left by the UKs departure, Austria is reluctant to do so.

Another contentious issue on the horizon for the EU and for neighbours Austria and Italy is the future of South Tyrol.

With a high possibility that Italys far-right The League could enter government across the border in Italy, tensions over the much-disputed Italian region of South Tyrol (known as Alto Adige in Italian) could ignite again between the two EU neighbours.

In December 2017, the current right-wing Austrian coalition government sparked outrage in Italy when it offered Austrian citizenship to German speakers in the bilingual region, the majority of which are German speakers, reports The Local Italy.

A pro-Austrian group in the Italian region, the Südtiroler Heimatbund, responded by placing ads on billboards in Vienna that read: “South Tyrol thanksAustria.”

The Leagues controversial leader Matteo Salvini has promised “not to touch the autonomy” of the region, reports Italian news agency ANSA.

With regards to Brexit, the rights of Austrian citizens in the UK and Brits in Austria remain a quagmire issue. More than 10,000 Brits live in Austria, according to the Austrian national statistics agency Statistik. Approximately 25,000 Austrians live in the UK.

This article originally appeared in Europe & You, The Local's weekly newsletter about how Brexit is affecting mainland Europe and the Brits living there. Sign up here, free.

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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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Australia

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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