Territory Stories

Parliamentary record : Part I debates (11 November 1986)



Parliamentary record : Part I debates (11 November 1986)


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




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





Publisher name

Northern Territory Legislative Assembly

Place of publication


File type



Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

Copyright owner

Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



Parent handle


Citation address


Page content

DEBATES - Tuesday 11 November 1986 It is evident that the benefits which flow to the Territory's tourist industry come not just from the funding provided by this government to the commission, but from many other areas within the framework of the budget. This budget reinforces the government's commitment to tourism. That commitment, evidenced by the Treasurer's increased allocation to the commission this year, must be applauded. It provides financial stimulus to an industry which is proving to be the Territory's lifeblood. In my por'tfolio of Business, Technology and Communication, there has been important progress with the Trade Development Zone. The Australian Industries Assistance Commission has produced a draft report which flies in the face of the Prime Minister's widely publicised initiatives to resurrect Australia's export manufacturing sector. It is quite amazing to me that the lAC, at this most critical time for Australia's economy, is actively proposing what can only be described as disincentives to this country's export-orientated resurgence. The draft report recommends against special assistance to trade development zones. This is an illogical action when both the Prime Minister and his Industry Minister, Senator Button, have supported the concept of trade development zones. There is no place for negativism in relation to such a vital Northern Territory government initiative as the TDZ. While the lAC draft report is a sad indictment of that body's capacity to grasp reality and is naturally of concern to this government, I must assure honourable members that the government's commitment to the zone is as firm as it ever was. There will be no retreat from the stand we took more than a year ago with the support of this Assembly: to ensure that Australia's first Trade Development Zone not only worked, but became a model manufacturing base. The potential of the Trade Development Zone, in terms of job and wealth creation, is enormous and cannot be understated. I invite all members to inspect progress at the zone and to become fully acquainted with what this export manufacturing base will mean for the future of the Northern Territory. The recent budget allocation of $5.6m for capital works, together with additional funding of $770 000 subsequently approved, will cover completion of the 4 warehou~es in the administration building, currently under construction, and an additional warehouse at a cost of $650 000. As a result of an intensive ongoing marketing program, 14 manufacturers from Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore have been signed to invest and establish in the zone. In addition to the marketing thrust into South-east Asia, the authority has initiated a program to attract import-orientated Australian companies to invest in the zone. Seminars have been held in Sydney and Melbourne and a selective advertising campaign will lead to heightened awareness of the zone among Australian companies. The authority is continuing to target appropriate manufacturers as well as making contact through various industry bodies. The Trade Development Zone Authority is a major element in the government's interdepartmental trade and marketing strategy. Its network of consultants and subconsultants in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand can be used by other Territory government agencies such as the Trade and Marketing Services Bureau, now Nortrade, and the Departments of Mines and Energy, Ports and Fisheries etc to facilitate local contacts. The authority's consultants are instrumental in arranging visits to Darwin by groups of potential investors who, might I remind honourable members, travel to the Territory at their own expense. While I am discussing the Trade Development Zone, I would add that recent comments and allegations that have been made about the activities of the zone 843