Gina Rinehart Warns of Australia Moving Towards Becoming Another Greece, Spain or Portugal

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By Vittorio Hernandez | November 26, 2012 9:53 AM EST

Due to perceived bad policies put in place by the Gillard government, Australia's richest woman Gina Rinehart warned on Thursday that the country may risk following the model of financially challenged European nations.

"We don't want to see Australia continue on a course with too many heads buried in the sand, critical investors discouraged by bad policies, even hated, too few understanding the problems while Australia moves towards being another Greece, Spain or Portugal," The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Ms Rinehart at the launch of her book titled Northern Australia and Then Some - Changes We Need to Make Our Country Rich.

The book launch, held Thursday evening in Sydney, was attended by over 300 people including her daughter Ginia, Fairfax Media Director Jack Cowin, Lachan Murdoch, Ian Plimer, former Future Fund Chairman David Murray and Lennox Hewitt, and Lady Flo Bjelke-Petersen and Hancock Prospecting Chief Executive Watroba in Brisbane.

To avert a financial disaster for Australia, Ms Rinehart pushed for more focus on earning and not spending, and to ensure a good environment for investment. She added the mining industry must cut costs to survive the global decline in commodity prices.

"People overseas aren't going to buy our produce because we're Australians and we're nice people. They're going to buy our produce if we keep our costs down," she pointed out.

Ms Rinehart, also the world's richest woman, reiterated her opposition to new and higher taxes such as the minerals resource rent tax and carbon tax and the soaring cost of regulation, citing more than 5,000 approvals for her Galilee Basin coal and rail projects.

The book is a collection of political essays which editor Eden Cox described as "a compendium of speeches, articles and images that offers the readers a comprehensive insight into her (Rinehart's) thoughts about national prosperity, and an intimate glimpse of the life and times of this prominent Australian, who has assumed the mantle of Western Australia's resources pioneer."

The Thursday launch coincided with the 60th anniversary of Lang Hancock's flight in his Auster when he first discovered the large iron ore deposits in Pilbara on Nov 22, 1952.

The book, priced at $40, includes previous articles published in mining journals, transcripts of Ms Rinehart's TV interviews and her speeches. She dedicated the book to her father, Mr Hancock, and daughter Ginia, but not unexpectedly, her three estranged adult children, whom she is engaged in a bitter legal battle, were not mentioned at all in the book.

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