Palmer is nation's biggest political donor after $10m to PUP

EMBATTLED MP Clive Palmer was the nation's biggest corporate donor in 2014-15, pouring almost $10 million into his political party.

Australian Electoral Commission political donations data was released yesterday, showing a big fall in major party receipts in the non-election year.

Those figures included donations and other income, with Liberal Party receipts down about 40% to $75 million from more than $125 million in 2013-14.

Labor had a 15% fall to $65 million, down from about $77 million, The Greens' receipts more than halved to $9 million, and Nationals receipts fell 7% to $12 million.

Despite sacking 237 workers from his Queensland Nickel refinery in Townsville last month, Mr Palmer's refinery donated $5.9 million to the Palmer United Party in 2014-15.

Mr Palmer's Mineralogy also donated about $3.6 million to the party, while his Palmer Coolum Resort donated about $120,000.

The next biggest corporate donor was the Australian Hotels and Hospitality Association, donating $414,149 across Liberal, Labor and Nationals.

Prominent individual political donors included Ros Packer, widow to Kerry Packer, who donated $100,000 to the Liberal Party.

Bankers Macquarie Group donated $325,500 across Liberals, Labor and the Nationals, while National Australia Bank donated $275,000 over the Liberal and Labor parties.

Mining figure Paul Marks similarly donated $340,000 to the Liberal Party.

Google Australia made its first political donation, of $60,000 to Labor, while gas firms Woodside, Origin and Santos also donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to both major parties.

Despite pledges from then prime minister Tony Abbott that the Coalition would not accept tobacco industry donations, the Nationals received $10,780 from Philip Morris.



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