Victorian taxis to start setting own fares … Specialty Fashion Group expects big earnings drop … Victoria ditches the plastic bag


The Victorian Government will introduce legislation today to allow the state’s taxis to set their own fares.

The new rules will also change how the state’s taxis communicate fares to customers, allowing customers to receive fare estimates from cabs when booking them via an app so they can “shop around” for the best deal.

Fairfax reports the industry shake-up means when passengers hail a cab on the street, the driver will also be required to give them a fare estimate before the trip begins.

The legislation looks set to come into effect in 2018.

Specialty Fashion Group forecasts earnings drop

The owner of fashion brands Katies and Rivers has told the Australian Securities Exchange it expects its earnings for the first six months of the year to be down at least $13 million compared with last year as the business continues to face a tough retail landscape.

Specialty Fashion Group told shareholders this morning that “difficult market conditions experienced to July have continued over the first quarter”. This puts the company’s earning expectations for the first half of 2018 between $14 and $17 million, compared with last year’s $30.4 million figure.

“The business is completing a robust improvement program,” the company said in a statement, and confirmed it has rolled out an e-commerce platform to capture online shoppers.

Bag ban extends further across Australia

The days of single-use plastic bags look numbered in Australia, with Victoria the latest state to start consultations with businesses about how to remove single-use plastic carriers from circulation.

The ABC reports this means the bag ban now covers most of the country, with South Australia, the Northern Territory and Australian Capital Territory all ditching plastic, while Queensland and Western Australia will commence the ban next year.

In July, Coles and Woolworths confirmed they would be phasing out single-use plastic bags over the next 12 months, charging 15 cents for reusable plastic bags instead.

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