The Northern Territory news Thu 11 Jun 2020
The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT
Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin.
News Corp Australia
Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.
News Corp Australia
THURSDAY JUNE 11 2020 NEWS 05 V1 - NTNE01Z01MA CHIEF Minister Michael Gunner, SA Premier Steven Marshall and WA Premier Mark McGowan have been called on by their jurisdictions peak business bodies to unite and form a Centre-West Travel Triangle. Business SA has joined forces with the Chamber of Commerce NT to deliver the call for the Centre-West Travel Triangle to be opened between the SA, NT and WA. They say the closed borders are costing the respective states and NT millions in lost tourism dollars with thousands of jobs also on the line. This united call to re-open the borders between South Australia, the NT and Western Australia is about keeping businesses alive and protecting jobs, Business SA CEO Martin Haese said. Together, we recognise the vitally important role tourism plays in our local economies. Chamber of Commerce NT chief executive Greg Ireland has warned Territory businesses were being pushed to breaking point. He said domestic spending was at an all-time low directly impacting the revenues of local business and there was never a better time for a Centre-West Travel Triangle. Without increased volume from interstate visitation many Territory businesses will be pushed to breaking point, he said. Typically, the NT gets more than one million interstate visitors who provide a substantial contribution to our economy. Territory business is crying out for the borders to be opened to maximise this unique opportunity to be the destination of choice for many Australians. It is holding up a number of investment decisions for business and jobs. Mr Haese said opening the borders of the Centre-West Travel Triangle would provide an immediate boost to the more than 18,000 tourism business in SA with further knock-on benefits for other businesses such as transport, cafes and restaurants and retail stores. While we understand the need to protect South Australians from the further spread of COVID-19, the best opportunity to open our borders is with those states and territories that have flattened the curve. The Territory has zero cases while Western Australia has less than 30 active cases. Both jurisdictions are BRING DOWN THE BORDERS Peak bodies uniting on border push GARY SHIPWAY Business Editor also well advanced in easing their restrictions up to Stage 3. The SA, NT, WA travel triangle makes a whole lot of sense. Were neighbours and there is a natural affinity between us all. The WA Chamber of Commerce and Industry says the coronavirus successes of its state, South Australia and the Northern Territory could represent opportunity. CCIWA chief executive officer Chris Rodwell has already made it clear that the easing of border restrictions cannot come soon enough. The sooner that border restrictions can be safely eased, the better for the many businesses who rely on tourism for their livelihoods, Mr Rodwell told the NT News. Great Southern Rails chief operating officer Luke Walker said demand for The Ghan and Indian Pacific rail journeys was still strong. Guests are telling us that theyre ready to travel again and keen to explore SA, NT and WA, he said. Our journeys have been suspended since March and while we understand that COVID still poses a small risk, we have worked hard to provide a safe and responsible environment for our guests and crew with our own Journey Safe experience plan and we are prepared for services to recommence. As of yesterday, there were two people in intensive care with coronavirus across Australia. There have been 1.65 million tests conducted. Chamber CEO Greg Ireland A sign at the NT-SA border warning of coronavirus restrictions Border closure court snag A LEGAL challenge against the constitutional right of the Queensland government to keep the states borders closed has hit a snag. The High Court in Brisbane has refused an application from lawyers for the Travel Essence challenge to access the documents used by the government when it decided to close the border. Chief Justice Susan Kiefel said yesterday the application was a fishing expedition and subsidiary to the constitutional matter at hand. The matter will return to court for a directions hearing alongside two challenges by businessman Clive Palmer. Mr Palmer is challenging border closures in Queensland and Western Australia. Nationals in surprise backing of Labor to keep NT seats EVERY Nationals senator has supported Federal Labors push to stop the NT losing one of its two Lower House seats, signing off on the first step to enshrine the move in law. The NTs Lower House seats of Lingiari and Solomon are under threat due to population changes. Senators Malarndirri McCarthy, who was not actually in the House after being kicked out to get tested for COVID-19, and Don Farrell put forth a motion to have the Bill introduced. In a surprise twist, all five Nationals senators supported the motion, signalling Federal Labor will probaly have their support when a vote comes. The senators were Susan McDonald and Matt Canavan from Queensland, Perin Davey from NSW, Bridget McKenzie from Victoria and NTs Dr Sam McMahon. At the 2019 election, Lingiari and Solomon had a combined 139,326 registered voters. In comparison, an average Federal seat is meant to have about 111,000 voters. If the Australian Electoral Commissions planned redistribution comes to pass, the NT could end up being the nations single largest federal seat, spanning 1.4 million sqkm and taking in two faraway islands, unless changes instigated by Federal Labor are enshrined into law. The party has drafted a Bill to stop the NT losing one of its seats. MADURA MCCORMACK