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





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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 11 November 1986 to be established. It would seem that we are in a basic agreement with the government. If our compromise proposal is adopted, a very valuable precedent will have been set. Common sense will have prevailed and, in recognition of this, we suggest that the park be called the Uranium Province National Park. How far we have moved to the left in recent times from the position taken by people before us who sought to advocate the development of Australia. How far we have sunk. Australia is 39th on the international credit list, between Cyprus and Barbados. That is where the world's greatest Treasurer has taken this country at the moment and it is going backwards at the rate of $1400m a month. With a debt now at $100 OOOm, we are fast achieving the status of a banana republic. Within the next 12 months,all we will be able to do is pay the interest bill on that debt. That is where the Labor Party has us now and that is where the Northern Territory Branch of the ALP will ensure that we remain: as a third world country. I look forward to hearing the contributions from the opposition spokesman on mines and energy; I want him to tell the miners of Australia what the alternative government in the Northern Territory would do for them. I do not hold much hope for them, but I could stand to be corrected. Let me give the shadow minister for mines and energy a few figures on the wealth of mining and what it does for Australia. It employs over 200 000 people directly and supports another 300 000, which is 7% of Australia's work force. Last year, it paid $1200m in taxes and royalties and it spent $1800m on capital equipment in 1984-85. It produces 50% of Australia's export dollars. That is what the mining industry does for this country, which is now rated 39th on the international credit list, a country that is between Cyprus and Barbados. Despite this, the federal government will deny access to our huge mineral deposits. Assay samples came back from Coronation Hill just recently. In one 2 m core sample, there were 64 g of gold. At least 11 t of gold and perhaps 30 t of gold are locked up at Coronation Hill. Platinum and palladium are also available. I am not sure whether the Senate candidate opposite wants to mine in stage 3 or not. I know what his party platform tells him and, of course, I know what his Prime Minister says. His Prime Minister says that the ALP will mine. I will be interested to hear just what he will do if he gets to the Senate. Of course, he has to be careful, and he had to impress his new boss the other day. He needs the vote of the left and it is the left that Mr Hawke is trying to appease at the moment. I would have liked to have been there with the member for Arafura the other day. He has told us about Professor Ovington and how good he is at managing the park and the cultural heritage there. He did not tell members that Big Bill had to wash off a painting that he did the other day because Professor Ovington did not like it. He did not mention that the cultural history that was being put on stone out there had to be removed under order from the ANPWS hierarchy and Professor Ovington, the man who served his apprenticeship under Professor Me11anby whom the member for Arafura rubbished. Professor Me11anby was also Derrick Ovington's professor. What went wrong when that man transmigrated with the magpie geese and the whistling ducks into Kakadu? What went wrong was that he saw an opportunity to empire build. That has not stopped. Remember that it is ALP party platform policy to include stage 3 in Kakadu and that that runs into Eva Valley. Do we remember Eva Valley, the freehold land that was bought by an Aboriginal group and immediately turned into Aboriginal land under the Aboriginal Land Rights (Northern Territory) Act? Remember what Eva Valley 764

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