Territory Stories

Parliamentary record : Part I debates (19 November 1985)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (19 November 1985)


Debates for 4th Assembly 1983 - 1987; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 4th Assembly 1983 - 1987




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

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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 19 November 1985 particularly Darwin, is adopted as the shore base for fishing and marketing operations and that the operations of foreign fishermen are progressively displaced by Australian enterprise. Norgaard has identified the lack of shore-based facilities in the Territory as the greatest single impediment to fisheries development. He has indicated that, if the Territory is to have a major fishing industry, it will require an act of faith on the part of this government to put facilities in place as the catalyst for development. He estimates that the value of the fishing industry to the Territory could amount to $100m per annum. In March-April of this year, I accompanied Mr Norgaard and the Secretary of the Department of Ports and Fisheries on a visit to Denmark and Alaska to see at first hand the nature of developments that have taken place there. Denmark is the state of the art so far as fishing industries go. We were able to see types of facil ities provided to the fishing industry by the Danish government and the substantial benefits that flow to the Danish people from the resultant strong fishing industry. In Alaska, the Danish experience is being transplanted with the help of Danish experts, including Norgaard. The ports of Homer and Seward that we visited would be 3 to 5 years ahead of our development here and are proving the benefits to be obtained from good planning and the provision of infrastructure by government. Fishing basin developments were an essential part of each port with handling facilities, cold stores, ice plants, ship repair facilities and IT,arketing facilities firmly integrated. It is by following the example of these types of development that the Territory can expect to benefit by capitali~ing on the northern Australian fishing industry. Expansion and development of the Territory industry must be led by the establishment of adequate and appropriate infrastructure. Steps have been taken recently to upgrade fishing industry facilities at Frances Bay. These include the extension of the Fishermen's Wharf, which was completed last month at a cost of about $lm, the installation of careening piles and the development of a refuelling service. Improved services are being developed in the Hornibrooks Wharf area and a private developer is constructing a marine service industry complex on land leased from the Port Authority adjacent to the Fishermen's Wharf. These improvements and associated developments are most important but they do not go far enough to achieve our objectives. The government recognises that Darwin lacks a number of essential infrastructure components for fishing industry development. These include an anchorage or vessel storage facility safe from cyclonic conditions, fish receival and handling facilities, and fish processing, cold store and sale hall facilities. The 240-stong northern prawning fleet is at present generally laid up in Queensland and Western Australian ports during the closed season which corresponds with the cyclone season. The benefits to the Territory economy from vessel maintenance and repairs conducted at this time are lost to other ports. The benefit from the landing of the catch cannot be fully exploited until processing and marketing is also Territory-based, and so the government must act directly to ensure that this infrastructure is developed as a catalyst for the generation of a full-scale fishing industry. This view is strongly reinforced by the findings of my overseas visit. 1821 [ I

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