Fact check

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China’s Minister of Commerce Dr Gao Hucheng and Australia’s Prime Minister Tony Abbott signed the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement in mid-July. AAP Image/Mick Tsikas

FactCheck: could foreign workers be paid less under the China-Australia FTA?

Unions have warned that there is no clear statement in the China-Australia free trade deal that says foreign and Australian workers have to receive the same conditions and pay. Is that correct?
Shadow Assistant Treasurer Andrew Leigh has said the GST is as inefficient but less equitable than income tax. AAP Image/Mick Tsikas

FactCheck: is the GST as efficient but less equitable than income tax?

The Shadow Assistant Treasurer, Andrew Leigh, has said the the Government's latest tax discussion paper says the GST is as inefficient as income tax, adding he thinks it's less equitable. Is that right?
Prime Minister Tony Abbott has suggested Australia has been true to its emissions reduction commitments but that other countries have not. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

FactCheck: has Australia met its climate goals, while other nations make ‘airy-fairy promises’?

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has described other countries' emissions reduction targets as "airy-fairy promises that never come to anything." How does that statement stack up against the evidence?
Cory Bernardi is a vocal opponent of same-sex marriage, saying children do best when they are raised by both a mother and a father. AAP/Alan Porritt

FactCheck: is having a mum and a dad the very best thing for a child?

Liberal senator Cory Bernardi, a vocal opponent of same-sex marriage, has said that "the very best thing" for the development of a child is to have a mum and a dad. What does the research say?
The Chief Justice of the Federal Circuit Court suggested Australia had an obligation to track down and look after the welfare of such children. AAP Image/April Fonti

FactCheck: is Australia legally obliged to look after children abandoned after commercial surrogacy?

Fresh details have emerged of a 2012 case of an Australian couple who were delivered twins via a commercial surrogacy arrangement in India, but brought only one twin home. Does Australia have obligations to ensure the other twin's welfare?
BHP Billiton’s Andrew Mackenzie said his firm has an effective tax rate of 45%. AAP Image/Tracey Nearmy

FactCheck: Is BHP Billiton Australia’s largest taxpayer, averaging $8-10b in tax a year?

BHP Billiton's Andrew Mackenzie says his firm is Australia's largest taxpayer, pays an average of $8 - $10 billion of tax in Australia every year and has an effective tax rate of 45%. Is that right?
Has any other country achieved a greater reduction than Australia in the intensity of their emissions per unit of GDP over between 1990 and now? AAP Image/Dan Peled

FactCheck: Has any country bested Australia in emissions intensity reduction since 1990?

Recent comments by Federal Minister for the Environment, Greg Hunt, implied that Australia is leading the world in reduction of greenhouse gas emissions per unit of GDP. Is that right?
Social Services Minister Scott Morrison has said eight out of 10 income taxpayers go to work to fund Australia’s welfare bill. AAP Image/Lukas Coch

FactCheck: do eight out of 10 taxpayers work every day to pay our $150b welfare bill?

Implying that 80% of Australian income tax goes straight towards the welfare bill overlooks the fact that a large proportion of income taxpayers benefit from social security.
Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s figures were taken form the Intergenerational Report, but we should be wary of economic projections that claim to see 40 years into the future. AAP Image/Joel Carrett

FactCheck: was Australia on a debt trajectory heading to 122% of GDP?

Any forecast 40 years ahead is fraught with uncertainty, so we should be wary of warnings Australia was on a trajectory of debt and deficit heading to 122% of GDP.
It’s hard to know for sure what role climate change played in the intensity of Cyclone Pam. AAP Image/Dave Hunt

FactCheck: is global warming intensifying cyclones in the Pacific?

A causal relationship between cyclone behaviour and anthropogenic global warming is a very real possibility. But most climate scientists hesitate to attribute any single event to global warming.

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