Debates Day 1 - Tuesday 23 May 1995
Parliamentary Record 11
Debates for 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997
Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)
Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES - Tuesday 23 May 1995 Work in the areas of range management, weed and pest control and the development of farming systems reflects the departments commitment to achieving appropriately high environmental standards in our industries. The Territorys primary industries, including our fisheries, registered strong growth during 1994 and have continued to play an important and expanding role in the development of the Northern Territory. Estimated gross value of all production for 1994 shows an increase of 32% to $336m, compared with the 1993 value of $255m. Cattle and buffalo production in 1994 was preliminarily valued at about $171m, an increase of approximately 68% compared with 1993. However, the increase was a combination of better prices received from mid-1993 and increased cattle turn-off. Live cattle exports increased by 58% to 110 000 head, due to increased demand from South-East Asia. The live cattle export trade has emerged as a buoyant and dynamic sector of the pastoral industiy and has become a valuable marketing option for the cattle producers in the Northern Territory and other parts of northern Australia. Horticultural production continued to perform strongly in 1994. The total value of horticultural production, including the nursery and cut flower industry, increased during the year by 32% to $41m. Except for mangoes, most Territory horticultural commodities enjoyed good prices during 1994. Overall, the horticultural industry has grown and diversified markedly in recent years, illustrating a progressive realisation of the industrys wide potential. The Territory enjoys certain advantages as a result of its capacity to supply early season and out-of-season markets, both interstate and overseas, with a range of produce, especially fruit. In recognition of the demand from these diversified markets, the areas planted to fruit trees and the number of fruit tree varieties are both steadily increasing. For 1994, the value of the Territorys commercial fishing industry was approximately $108m which was an increase of around 2% compared with the 1993 figure. Wild stock prawns and pearl farming accounted for 89% out of the total, or $96m. Effective management of the wild stock is an integral component of the Territorys long-term, ecologically sustainable resource use management strategy. Fishery resources with growth potential in the short-to-medium term include demersal trawl, Timor Reef, shark, coastal net and coastal line fisheries. Long-term prospects are evident in aquaculture and I hope to make announcements of major developments in this respect in the near future. In general, demand from the Asian region for high-quality seafoods remains buoyant thanks to growing affluence and improved transport links. Demand from southern Australia for fresh seafood is also strong, although to date the potential of these markets has not been fully exploited. The expansion potential is demonstrated by the 12 new commercial fishing vessels ordered, under construction or operating in the Territory during the last 12 months. These boats have a value of millions of dollars, and the investment is evidence of the fishing industrys confidence in its future. World economic growth is forecast to strengthen in 1995-96, with stronger growth in western Europe and Japan more than offsetting moderating growth in the United States. Reflecting the improved outlook for the world economy, commodity prices are forecast to rise further in the remainder of 1994-95 and in 1995-96. To our north, the countries of East and South-East Asia achieve very high comparative rates of economic growth. Live cattle, buffalo, various seafoods and horticultural products are in high demand. The value of Northern Territory rural and fisheries products exported to Asia in 1993-94 was estimated to be $125m which is a 24% increase on the previous year. Mature industries, such as the pastoral/livestock industry, are introducing new production technologies as well as marketing and management 3513
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