I wish to raise comments that were made in a contribution in this house in the last sitting week. They were in relation to Alcoa being a large philanthropic organisation. It was stated that Alcoa was not in a position to donate to schools programs like the KIDS Foundation in Ballarat because of the costs of the carbon tax. That was a fairly serious allegation that was made, and it motivated me and my office to contact the government relations officer at Alcoa for a response. The response on the telephone was that that was not the case. We then sought a written response, and the response from Alcoa’s Victorian operations states:
“… Alcoa’s Victorian operations have come under significant pressure due to the strength of the Australian dollar, higher input costs and a low international aluminium price.”
This has resulted in a reduction in discretionary spending such as sponsorships and partnerships.
Nowhere in Alcoa’s response are the words ‘carbon tax’ mentioned. The comments made in the last sitting week cannot go unchecked. Alcoa is an important asset for the Victorian economy through many avenues, including its philanthropic contributions. It is not an organisation to be used politically by any member of this house to conjure up false and misleading statements to suit a disingenuous and deceitful anti-carbon tax campaign.