Mining tax evil, says Fortescue founder

The founder and chairman of Fortescue Metals says his company's High Court challenge to the Federal Government's mining tax is a case of good versus evil.

Andrew Forrest has told Radio National that taxes that discriminate against individual states are unconstitutional, and he is confident his legal team will prove that in the High Court.

"Our enthusiasm to run this case is because we believe it's fundamentally unconstitutional - it interferes in the rights of states," Mr Forrest said.

"I really can't add anything further but to say it should be challenged, and all it takes for evil to conquer is for good people to do nothing, and we've decided to not be one of the ones to do nothing." Mr Forrest also warned that Australia should not become complacent about its relationship with China, particularly in the supply of key resources such as iron ore.

Mr Forrest says he has met China's incoming president, Xi Jinping, who has said he plans to ensure the country's prosperity reaches every citizen.

"He intends to build up that economy to eradicate any major measurable poverty in China," Mr Forrest said.

"That's got to be great for Australia.

We need to knuckle down and take advantage of that opportunity and not let other countries supply those services and supply those resources, which they can if we take that Chinese relationship for granted." Yesterday, Fortescue Metals announced it had taken a $4.2 million stake in the Melbourne-based oil and gas company, Oil Basins, which operates in WA's Canning Basin.

It is the company's first investment outside iron ore.

Market Data

  • Currencies
    Currencies
    NamePriceChange% Chg
    0.9328-0.0004-0.04%
    AUDUSD=X
    0.5556+0.0001+0.02%
    AUDGBP=X
    0.6753-0.0002-0.02%
    AUDEUR=X
  • Commodities
    Commodities
    NamePriceChange% Chg