Monday, 18 February 2013 08:39
Mining billionaire Gina Rinehart will be on the agenda at the Australian Workers' Union national conference.
AWU national secretary Paul Howes will raise with 500 delegates at the national conference in Queensland on Monday what he says are the real issues facing workers.
"We are going to talk about people like Gina Rinehart who think it is okay to pay people $2 a day," he told ABC television.
Last year, Ms Rinehart made a video appearance in which she warned that Australians needed to become more competitive to compete with places like Africa where some people will work for less than $2 a day.
Mr Howes will also discuss the mining industry.
"We are going to talk about the fact that time and time again we see the mining industry in this country threaten and cajole and try to use their substantial resources to threaten the way democracy works," he said.
"I think there is nothing wrong with taking up the fight to this sector."
Mr Howes applauded Prime Minister Julia Gillard's $1 billion plan to invest in innovation, provide venture capital funding for small business and give Australian manufacturers a fairer shot at major contracts.
"It will deliver real benefits quickly and surely to the Australian manufacturing industry," he said.
"The fact that the mining industry is opposing it is a good thing."
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