Territory Stories

Debates Day 4 - Tuesday 30 October 2012



Debates Day 4 - Tuesday 30 October 2012

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Parliamentary Record 1


Debates for 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 12th Assembly 2012 - 2016




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Hansard Office

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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 30 October 2012 237 I know my government is already committed to increased tourism and education opportunities as part of our plan. When it is said that: Australian food producers and processors will be recognised globally as innovative and reliable producers of more and higherquality food and agricultural products, services and technologies to Asia I am heartened by our concrete commitment to increasing the opportunities for business and workers in the mining and energy sector and the attached benefits that will flow through the economy. However, most importantly, it is more than just my governments vision, the job is to bring the Commonwealth to the table and preparing to: work together with business and the Northern Territory government to accelerate Darwins evolution as a sophisticated, liveable city built around a gateway to Asia, and a regional hub for a large number of goods and services, through coordinated infrastructure planning and international engagement activities. I have commissioned the Office of Asian Engagement to immediately develop a response to the White Paper to guide the Territorys strategic planning and policy formation to best capitalise on this exciting part of the Territorys future. Our plan for a three-hub economy was developed with a firm eye on Asian engagement and expanding links with our Asian markets. My government also has plans to establish an Australia/Indonesia forum conducted at Charles Darwin University where senior figures from both countries will meet and develop ideas. Achievements so far: the government has committed to broadening the NTs export base to make the pastoral sector more sustainable. Further developing livestock export markets is an important step to ensuring the long-term sustainability of this vital industry to the Territory. Earlier this month, I was pleased to meet a delegation from Trung Dong Corporation that visited Darwin to witness the loading of cattle prior to its departure to Vietnam. This was a consignment of 1500 head of cattle which marked the start of imports for this company and the second shipment of cattle to depart for Vietnam in recent times. Discussion with the Trung Dong Corporation indicated that based on the success of the first shipment they would be looking at importing approximately eight shipments a year or around 12 000 head of cattle. This will inject around $10m to $12m into our pastoral sector. The Commonwealth still has plenty of work to do to convince Asia it is serious about improving links. The ban on live cattle trade to Indonesia eroded trust in the region and undermined confidence. It is no coincidence that my first overseas visit as Chief Minister will be to Jakarta and early next year I will have some meetings in Japan. The minister for Primary Industry has already travelled to Indonesia with a view to increase the Territorys live cattle export trade which was severely damaged by Canberras kneejerk and irresponsible decision to ban the trade overnight. Minister Westra van Holthes visit gave him the opportunity to see firsthand how the effects of the live cattle ban have impacted upon all facets of the trade and associated businesses. The challenge now is to begin the process of rebuilding our relationship through partnerships and open discussion. Indonesia welcomes the significant work undertaken by Australian and Indonesian industry in regard to live cattle exports which has seen a dramatic improvement in animal welfare standards through the export supply chain assurance system. This open and transparent system allows for complete traceability of cattle exported from Australia to ensure the animal welfare requirements are being adhered to. The strengthening of this industry is vital to the regional and remote areas of the Territory where much of our cattle production takes place. We have also had early success in our plan to build international partnerships in education. The Territory has an agreement that will see students from a leading South Korean university based in Darwin for training and job placement. Under the agreement between Ansan University and Darwinbased International College of Advanced Education, final last-year hospitality students will transfer to Darwin for up to four months to further their English language skills and to work in local businesses. An initial tranche of about 20 South Korean students will arrive in Darwin at the end of January, with the potential for up to 100 students to be placed here every year. The program will help students develop language and job skills while Territory hospitality businesses will benefit from the skilled-up staff. The Korean students will be employed as cooks, waiters, food and beverage attendants. They will be in Darwin on working holiday visas and will be paid at or above the industry award. While the signs are encouraging, there is still plenty of work to do in engaging with private and public training provider schools and Charles Darwin University to ensure that more overseas students take advantage of the Territorys rich educational and training opportunities. For example, my government is supporting Charles Darwin Universitys plan to establish a campus in the Darwin Central Business District which will