Annual Report 1998/99 Trade Development Zone Authority
Tabled Paper 1647
Tabled papers for 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001; Tabled papers; ParliamentNT
Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory under Standing Order 240. Where copyright subsists with a third party it remains with the original owner and permission may be required to reuse the material.
C H A I R M A N 'S R E P O R T The 1998/99 financial year has been marked by the expected challenges of maintaining momentum against a backdrop of global industry slowdowns and continuing monetary instability in several regions including South East Asia. The Trade Development Zone Authority (TDZA) has experienced a quiet year as a result of such factors but has still managed to achieve important outcomes that will stand it in good stead for the year ahead. In keeping with its planned goals for 1997/98, the Trade Development Zone Authority has actively encouraged Commonwealth Government initiatives to enhance the position o f Australia's export manufacturing sector. These initiatives include new tax arrangements (Goods and Services Tax) to do away with inhibitive tax costs associated with product export, and the development of new legislation that moves closer to the recognition of export processing zones. The TDZA has been working closely with southern authorities coordinating introduction of the zones. The Northern Territory was the first region o f Australia to create a trade development zone and its closest competitors to-date have been Malaysia, Philippines, Indonesia, Taiwan and China. It has only been in the past few years that the impetus to set up similar zones, to that operated in Darwin, has emerged in other parts of Australia. Government committees throughout Australia are now keenly pursuing the concept, and the TDZA staff who already have valuable experience in setting up and managing a successful trade zone, will have a ongoing key role to play in guiding new interstate developments in this field. During the year, the TDZA welcomed the Commonwealth Government's introduction of the Manufacturing-in-Bond (MIB) scheme and progress on its plans to establish new Export Processing and Free Trade Zones within Australia. Only one Manufacturing in Bond licence has been issued so far to a company in Queensland. Some teething problems were encountered but the Commonwealth Government is working with the stakeholders to improve the system. The Commonwealth Government is also advancing its proposal to develop the TRADEX system in conjunction with the Manufacturing in Bond initiative. This scheme should provide experienced manufacturers with similar conditions to those enjoyed in overseas foreign trade zones. The TDZA has welcomed moves in this direction which, combined with new business incentives to flow from introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on 1 July next year, should provide an improved working environment and cost structure for exporters in Australia, thus enhance the Authority's ability to attract new investors. The GST is expected to provide exporters with relief from all sales tax on inputs to goods manufactured for export. The Trade Development Zone Authority reviewed its 1998-2000 Business Plan during the year and established new goals to enhance the zone's performance and the part it will play in developing the Northern Territory in the future. 2
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