Well, things are going from bad to worse. An American company offered to bail out Arrium to the tune of $1.4 Billion Dollars – $950 million and the remainder raised by Arrium Shareholders. The financial backers and creditors of Arrium rejected the deal and trading was halted on Arrium in the Australian Stock Market. It’s not looking good and there is now talk of the major banks and
creditors extending a $400 Million loan to Arrium to try and pay off some of its debts, but the sting in the tail is that the Banks and Creditors will appoint an Administrator. We have had politicians, senators and others here all day and there was one thousand people strong rally and march through part of the town – mainly around the CBD and the main street. And no, I was not involved in either. I was at the hospital with Annabell and later in the afternoon we had Benji at the Vet for a check-up. We don’t know about injections and I have not managed to get much information from the rescue people so what we decided is to leave him for the moment and in a few months we will give him the five-in-one injection. Overall his health is very good although I did get a bit of a slap on the wrist because he has put on weight since his first visit in November of last year. I find this difficult because he is well exercised – walks close to 60 miles a week – with me – is not overfed and does not get a lot of treats. And it’s a walk, not a casual stroll – with a few stops along the way. Anyway, I’ll have to cut down his food intake a little and get his weight down. Today (Wednesday) is not helping since it has been chucking it down for most of the night and it’s still raining.
Our major employer – Arrium Mining – has gone into Voluntary Administration with debts of over $4 Billion, $3 Billion of which is owed to the banks, over $1 Billion owed to other creditors and $500 million owed to the Staff. Things are not looking good and trading has been suspended. But what gets me is that the management have run the place into the ground, it owes money everywhere, but somehow it’s the Government’s fault. And the reason it’s suddenly the government’s fault is that the Federal Treasures and the Prime Minister didn’t visit with their cheque book and hand over a free of any interest cheque for $5 billion and bail the company and its management out right there and then. Well it probably is the government’s fault and I just don’t understand how these things work. Things are not looking so good and there is now open talk of a break-up of the group and parts being sold off. It is a very worrying time for everyone and $5 Billion is a lot to make up and in order to save the company and 8,000 jobs, the major loss making steelworks may have to be sacrificed. On the news tonight the government pleaded with Arrium management not to put the company into Administration, but the banks put pressure on the management and they caved in and appointed an approved Administrator. In these last few days I have met some of the people who were with Link Engineering and have lost their jobs. One family was the son of one of our families at church.
The new lady dog will arrive tomorrow at 8am. Sooah and her husband have to clear out the house this weekend so she is bringing me the lady tomorrow. Her name is Kongsoon, which is not too bad. The name, I found out means “Little Bean” Sooah is of the opinion that she is coming back so really we are only fostering her dog for a while – at least that’s the plan. We’ll see – I hope she is right but I have my doubts at least for the present. Well, there you are! I thought we were safe since my son didn’t work for Arrium however, he is a Systems Engineer with Logicamms and now that Arrium is in Receivership all contracts have been suspended until further notice. Arrium cannot pay the contractors until the Receiver has completed his investigation and authorities the money to be paid. Andrew is still being paid, of course, but the company now has someone sitting around doing nothing – and getting paid. This being the case, they want him to go down to Adelaide and assist with some of the projects they have down there – at least until Arrium is up and running again and authorized to pay out the cash to its contractors. However, the company have asked him to consider re-locating to Adelaide. So the Arrium crisis is having an effect on us.