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  Jewish donors were among the biggest corporate and individual contributors to party political funds in 2001 and 2002 -- Australian Electoral Commission

Australian Jewish News
Melbourne, February 20, 2003


Jewish donors back main political parties

Bernard Freedman

JEWISH donors were among the biggest corporate and individual contributors to party political funds in 2001 and 2002, the Australian Electoral Commission revealed in its political donations return released last week.

Westfield shopping mall developer Frank Lowy topped the list of Jewish donations with $624,200 - $311,900 to the Australian Labor Party (ALP) and $312,300 to the Liberals.

The bulk came from Lowy's private company Croissy Pty Ltd, supplemented by smaller donations under $10,000 from Westfield Capital Corporation.

Harry Triguboff's Meriton Apartments gave $250,000 to the Liberals' fundraising front The Free Enterprise Foundation. Another $27,917 went to the Liberals in NSW. The ALP's NSW branch received $107,400 in two $50,000 donations and a number of other smaller donations.

Packaging magnate Richard Pratt, through Pratt Holdings Pty Ltd, was also a major contributor to The Free Enterprise Foundation with a $200,000 gift. Another $6000 went directly to the Liberals and $2500 to the National Party in NSW. The ALP's Victorian branch received $100,000 and the ALP in NSW $25,000.

Both the Liberal Party and the ALP benefited from the Gandel Group and another Gandel company, Northgan. The ALP received $95,000, the Liberals $86,300.

Isador Magid gave $50,000 to the Victorian branch of the ALP.

Donations to the ALP headquarters and state branches from all over Australia totalled $60,268,768. The Liberal Party, nationally and in the states, received $58,250,015; the National Party, $9,180,641. Pauline Hanson's One Nation, despite its virtual demise, received $1,482,929.



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