Debates Day 3 - Thursday 21 October 2010
Parliamentary Record 15
Debates for 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 11th Assembly 2008 - 2012
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES - Thursday 21 October 2010 We hosted a number of events outside the conference. Many deals are done afterwards and strong relationships are formed. One of our key initiatives is the pre-inspection facility. This continues to go from strength to strength, enabling business to have easy access into Indonesia and is vital. The Shanghai World Expo was also mentioned. We were a Silver Sponsor of the pavilion, which enabled us to have a week at the expo. I have quoted figures in the House: 450 000 people per day attended the Expo; about 50 000 per day went through the Australian pavilion. We had a VIP area to hold functions for business people, tourist operators, and a range of other people. What was significant about the 50 000 people per day going through was the NT content they were exposed to. The poles from Maningrida were a prominent display, and the 10 or 12 foot high picture of Connie Jape on the wall telling the story of the Northern Territory. Ayers Rock was significant. It was very good for the NT. Approximately 75 000 000 people will go through the Expo over the six months. It is the biggest Expo ever held. There has also been the Guangzhou trade show in China and SEAAOC here. The calibre of people attending, both onshore and offshore, was extremely significant and I congratulate the Chief Minister for doing such a great job in hosting it. The Chief Minister mentioned the Bulky Goods Retailers Association Annual Conference at the Convention Centre. Those annual conferences are phenomenal. I spoke to Malu recently about bookings; it is booked out until Christmas. That is bringing a range of people into the Northern Territory who would not usually come here. I have attended many functions there and always point out people should take a good look because Darwin has the capability for businesses - certainly offshore businesses - to find skilled staff in the Northern Territory. We have had a range of visitors. The Chinese Vice President, Mr Xi Jinping ,visited in June this year; a significant visit. He is being touted as the next President of China. His visit to the Northern Territory has formed a relationship. The Indonesian Minister for Agriculture also visited, and various governors - strong relationship are being formed. The minister for Education, in his adjournment speech last night, talked about Sail Indonesia. Again, it is a productive and relationship-building exercise between the two countries and financially rewarding with yachts coming into Darwin. They were here for several weeks. Tourism and the recreational boating fraternity is a market to look at in the future. Madam Speaker, we offer a great deal of support to business. The Trade Support Scheme is heavily utilised by local business and has a high degree of success. This government is punching above its weight in the trade area. We want to take a very businesslike approach to trade with markets to our north. I tell them, and local business, we are in the box seat for a productive future. In the past the economy of the world centred on Europe then shifted to North America. Now it is Asia, and we are sitting in the box seat to do a great deal of trade as the nearest neighbour. We look forward to a positive future. I thank members for their contribution. Motion agreed to; statement noted. MOTION Note Statement - Establishment of Marine Supply Base Continued from 19 August 2010. Mr ELFERINK (Port Darwin): Madam Speaker, I will not be long - I am not going to talk too much about the statement per se. Suffice to say this is another example of a government struggling to fulfil its duties to the people of the Northern Territory. There is no shortage of items of legislation on the Notice Paper. There is no shortage of things to discuss in this House, yet despite consultation and discussion today and last night from the Whip - I know he is not the Whip; he is merely the messenger - Hermes. In spite of our messages from Hermes which were quite clear, at the very last death knell someone has looked at the clock and said: Oh, my God, we are going to be home too early; we had better bring on the Marine Supply Base statement otherwise we will be accused of not doing enough. I am wondering who is relying on the Personal Injuries (Liabilities and Damages) Amendment Bill passing through this House. I am wondering who is relying on any other number of legislative instruments such as the Penalties Amendment (Justice and Treasury Legislation) Bill passing through this House. Yet, we find ourselves dealing with government filibusters because they are afraid of being embarrassed about not having enough work to do, or not being able to bring enough work into this House. This is what we expect from this government. They are tired; they have had enough; they despise this House because it holds them to account - and how they need to be held to account. This is what I expect from this government - the notification members on this side of the House had for the advancement of this statement was four or five minutes. Members on this side of the House make an effort to prepare, which is why we have communications behind the 6520
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