The Facts on Australia’s Live Sheep Export Industry | Livestock

The live sheep export industry is an important industry to Australia, providing a vital market for sheep producers to sell their livestock to and underpinning the domestic sheep farming industry.The majority of sheep are exported from the port of Fremantle in Western Australia, with almost three quarters of Australian sheep exported from this port in 2009. Over 50% of sheep from the sheep production industry in Western Australia are exported live overseas, making the industry especially important to the Western Australian economy. Other ports that export live sheep include Portland and Port Adelaide.Australian sheep are exported to countries across the Middle East, primarily Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Bahrain, Jordan, Qatar and the UAE. In 2009 over 3.5 million sheep were exported to these countries, with Kuwait taking 950,000 head and and Bahrain taking 747,000 head of sheep respectively. The number of sheep exported in 2009 represented a drop of 15% on the previous year, with demand for the live export of sheep far outstripping supply in the Australian sheep production industry last year. This has resulted in calls for the sheep farming industry to rebuild sheep flocks in the coming years.In 2009 the live export of sheep contributed A$323 million to the Australian economy.Australia also has a live cattle export industry and a live goat export industry, primarily exporting to countries throughout South East Asia. Indonesia is the primary market for the live cattle export industry, and Malaysia is the primary market for the live goat export industry. The live cattle export industry contributed A$662 million to the Australian economy in 2009, and the live goat export industry contributed A$11.5 million.Australia is also involved in the meat export industry, exporting chilled and frozen beef, sheep and goat meat products to countries across the world in addition to exporting livestock. This is because there is demand for red meat products as well as livestock from overseas countries, and Meat and Livestock Australia invests in promoting all of these products to consumers overseas.This is why arguments that Australia could cease supplying live sheep exports and replace them with sheep meat exports are not realistic. The two trades are complementary, and it is not as simple as replacing one trade with the other as they serve the needs of different consumers in Middle Eastern markets.Meat and Livestock Australia and LiveCorp invest heavily in improving the welfare of sheep, cattle and goats throughout the livestock export industry.This investment involves programs to improve the welfare of live sheep exports once they arrive in the Middle East. This includes employing a team of animal welfare experts that work with local veterinarians, stockmen, truck drivers, feedlot operators and port staff to improve how Australian sheep are cared for in the region.This team provides training courses to local workers, upgrades facilities and installs new equipment and infrastructure to improve the care of Australian sheep overseas.Highlights of this work in 2009 included the development of a sheep trolley, which assists local workers in the Middle East to move sheep humanely and efficiently. The trolleys have been distributed to each major importing country in the region and allow sheep to be comfortably wheeled from feedlots to processing facilities.It also included the installation of new port discharge facilities in Kuwait, which have ensured sheep are able to be unloaded in Shuwaikh Port safely and securely.This work has made a significant difference to the welfare of live sheep exports from Australia, and the live sheep export industry is committed to continuing to improve animal welfare in the countries we export to.

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Five Factors To Consider Before Investing In Residential Real Estate | Real estate

During the past decade, many people have jumped into residential real estate investing. This was never so true as during the recent real estate boom. People read all the “get rich quick” schemes that litter the book shelves of libraries and book stores — use other people’s money, use no money of your own, and make millions! A lot of people did make great sums of money during the most recent boom; but now those, who did not get out before the market cooled, are seeing those investments in foreclosure due to their inability to make the mortgage payments.Just because the real estate market isn’t over the top, as in the past few years, does not mean you no longer can make money in residential real estate. The difference between now (post-boom) and during the market boom is that the “get rich quick” schemes will not work.Do You Have What It Takes?Investing in real estate is not for the faint hearted, the non-risk takers. It is for investors who are in it for the long haul, who can easily sit on their investment (if need be) until the market shifts in their favor. It also is for those who truly enjoy this type of investment. They are the ones who are the most successful in real estate investing.You must be willing to invest time — upfront and before each potential investment. If you do not take the time to research the properties and your target market, you probably will not be very successful. You also must gather knowledge on how to make a real estate deal that works in your favor. That requires educating yourself to understand the jargon and game rules. Today, it takes a careful, methodical approach to residential real estate investing, especially when acquiring your first property.Besides needing time and money, being a risk taker, and being willing to commit to a long-term investment, if needed, there are five additional factors you must consider each time before you make an investment in residential real estate.Supply and Demand — Where Is the Current Market?The economics of supply and demand is what makes the long-term investors successful in residential real estate. They are willing to weather the ups and downs of the real estate market, waiting for an advantageous market to sell their property.Supply and demand is influenced by many economic factors, which in turn affects the residential real estate market. Well-located residential real estate will endure fluctuations in the market and continue to appreciate in value. Knowing your market means knowing when to buy or not to buy, which deals will work when, and when to sit on an investment or sell it.Your CreativityAnother factor to consider is your own creativity in managing your investments. Residential real estate is one type of investment that allows for a lot of creativity:o You may invest for the long term, renting the property to continue making a profit while waiting to sell at a more advantageous time. You can purchase a home to fix up and resell immediately for a profit.o There are many financing options available for residential real estate, allowing for even more creativity. You also can invest on your own, with a group of partners, with a corporation, or even with a Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT — a mutual fund with real property assets or mortgage securities).o There is an abundant variety of residential real estate types in which to invest — single-family homes, townhouses, condominiums, and duplexes.The more creative you are in creating and managing your real estate investments, the more profitable and successful you will be.Other People’s MoneyA third factor is knowing how you can use other people’s money to your advantage without landing in foreclosure, as so many people now are who subscribed to the “get rich quick” schemes during the boom.You can begin with only a few thousand dollars, using other people’s money to underwrite the remaining mortgage. You must know all the different ways available to finance your investment. This goes back to taking the time to educate yourself, before you begin investing, and creatively making the best use of financing.Other People’s TimeWhether you are fixing up real estate to sell or renting it, it will take time, effort and management. If you already have a full-time job and a family, you probably cannot do it all yourself, and I doubt you wish to be woke up at 2 a.m. by a renter with a plugged toilet.Using contractors to fix up the property or experienced property managers to handle your rental real estate makes for less profit in your pocket on your individual investment properties. However, it frees up your time to invest in more properties, making your overall profits much higher.Your Tax AdvantageResidential real estate investing is quite unique. It offers you tax write-offs not available in other types of investments. There are many deductions available to you — deducting the mortgage interest or refinancing without being taxed are just two examples. There are many benefits to real estate investing that reduce your tax liability and increase your profits.If you believe residential real estate investing is for you, begin by learning more about it. There are thousands of books and resources on the topic. Stay away from anything that sounds too good to be true. It probably is, especially in today’s real estate market.

How to Take a Cheap Vacation | Travel vacation

I can’t think of many people that don’t like traveling. Most of the people that I run across are planning vacations, enjoying their down time, and exploring the world. That’s how I am. I love exploring new places and getting around to different places.What I don’t like is paying for the experience. Regardless of where you travel, vacations are going to be a huge financial commitment. No matter what you do, you’re almost always going to spend more than you originally plan.There’s really no such thing as a cheap vacation but, there’s nothing wrong with taking steps to reduce the price. Here are some of the things that you can do to get the most inexpensive vacation possible.Be Flexible With Your DatesThere’s a huge benefit to being flexible with your dates. If you’re looking at getting an airline ticket, then the prices are going to fluctuate depending on the season. However, if you’re just looking at a hotel it can benefit you as well. If you’re flexible with your days you’ll be more open to different discounts that hotels might offer. They might offer a discount for certain days, or give lower unpublished rates. Either way, it creates more opportunities to save money.Plan Something CloseThe farther you travel, the more expensive your vacation becomes. If you plan a weekend getaway a couple of hours from where you live, then you’ll end up paying a lot less than what you would have paid otherwise. Look for something a couple of hours away that you’ve either enjoyed in the past, or never done before.Avoid Heavily Visited AreasHeavily visited areas usually cost more. When you’re planning your trip you should try to find something that people don’t usually do. Look for something that’s going to be fun for your family, yet cheap at the same time,Get CreativeThink about the things that your family enjoys that you’ve never really tried before. Maybe you’ve never gone horseback riding, or hiking, or windsurfing. Look for something fun that you can plan a vacation around.Plan With a Coupon BookCoupon books can be great vacation planners. Why? Because they give you different ideas for fun activities, and a lower price at the same time. You can also try using a website like Groupon to get even better deals. Groupon is a great website for finding fun things to do because so many companies use it to announce discounts.