Australian governments to partially fund Forbes conference

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Wednesday, August 24, 2005

The Australian government and the New South Wales State goverernment are going to fund the Forbes Global CEO Conference, to be held at the Sydney Opera House next week. The State government has said that the contract prevents it from revealing how much taxpayers money will be spent.

A spokesman for the Deputy Premier, John Watkins, said that they could not divulge the costs "under the contract arrangements". A government source suggested to the Sydney Morning Herald that the state and federal governments are spending up to $1million each.

The State government has been criticised for providing free police protection at the conference. Security will require 200 police a day, at an estimated cost of more than $500,000.

According to the government, the large police presence is required because ASIO has assessed the event as "medium risk". A number of Global justice and peace groups have pledged to protest at the conference. The number of protestors is currerntly projected to be around 2,000.

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