Territory Stories

Debates Day 1 - Tuesday 23 November 1999



Debates Day 1 - Tuesday 23 November 1999

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Parliamentary Record 20


Debates for 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 8th Assembly 1997 - 2001




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Tuesday 23 November 1999 International relationships will always play an important part in the development of economic and business ties between countries. Student and teacher exchanges enhance ties with many of the countries in which the Northern Territory government has already established economic links. Mrs BRAHAM (Housing): Mr Speaker, I move that the minister be granted an extension of time. Motion agreed to. Mr ADAMSON: Mr Speaker, I thank the House. It will take only a few moments to complete my statement. Certainly, the international maintenance of successful long-term programs such as exchange programs to the UK, the US and Canada and teacher and student exchanges between the Northern Territory and Indonesia continue to build those links. The exchanges also provide opportunities for teachers to increase then- professional skills and knowledge in other languages and cultures. The Department of Education also manages the South-East Asia and Pacific Region Educational Administrators and Managers Symposium (SEAPREAMS), which provides the basis for principal partnerships for professional development in the region. From an employment and training perspective, the Northern Territory Employment and Training Authority is working towards ensuring that Territorians are equipped with the skills to handle the future. Some of the key mechanisms identified for achieving this foundation are to establish Darwin as a major training centre in the region and to build the Northern Territory IT&T industry capability and capacity by leveraging outsourcing and skills development. Another key strategy is to establish the Territory as a major tertiary education and research centre for the region, particularly in arid-zone, tropical, solar and health research. All of these strategies fall within NTETAs range of activities and operations, and accordingly the authority will have a key role in their implementation. The authority has recently undergone a significant review of its own, resulting in many changes to the organisation that will give it a more strategic focus. It has identified a series of strategic initiatives to work towards diversifying the economy through service industry growth. The House will be pleased to know that the new NTETA is very well placed to deliver real outcomes under the umbrella of Foundations for Our Future and to ensure that the workforce of the Northern Territory is equipped to meet the challenges of the future. I commend the statement to the House. Mr HATTON (Nightcliff): I rise to support this statement, along with all of the statements that have been brought forward in the Foundations for Our Future series. What we can see emerging is an integrated program - almost a battle plan, one could say - for the development of the Northern Territory, assessing our strengths and opportunities, and developing strategies to implement for the benefit of all Territorians. This adds significantly to a very important and emerging industry area of the world. In particular, when one looks at our strengths, one sees the high level of computer literacy in the Northern Territory. We have an educationally advanced population with technology and infrastructure in place to support industries such as information technology, telecommunications, international banking and finance, and related services. These create a great opportunity to add to the growth and development of the Northern Territory and our continuing long-term strategic aim of building closer links with regional economies in South-East Asia. Many of these strategies are geared towards that objective, to see Darwin as a regional hub for many of these services in the region of the world in which we live. I encourage the government to give serious consideration to developing this very important strategy. I noted this morning in respect of the Northern Territory railway that we can see coming into place critical key infrastructure facilities that open up so many other opportunities for other industry development. Getting those core infrastructure facilities in place, around which you can build on and meet your objectives in many of these areas, is so important. In most of the industries referred to in this Foundations for Our Future statement a key and critical factor has to be the availability of quality, reliable power. This is absolutely essential to developing international best practice in the delivery of these services. Nothing could be worse than to have an international banking operation caught out by power failures or, given the reality of our tropical climatic conditions, for our power distribution system to be placed at risk by events such as destructive cyclones. The reinforcement and assurance that can come from enhancing the quality, reliability and the security of our power, I submit, is a critical foundation stone for major international corporations and even small businesses to invest significantly into these areas to grasp the opportunities. 4794