Friday 1 December 2023
Property Council NT champions bold blueprint for Northern Australia
The Property Council of Australia’s Northern Territory Division has welcomed the release of the Joint Select Committee on Northern Australia’s report on Workforce Development, which sets a clear path forward in balancing the region’s natural resources and cultural richness against social and economic challenges.
Property Council NT Executive Director Ruth Palmer noted the report outlines the region’s workforce development issues stemming from inadequate social infrastructure, limited telecommunications, community infrastructure, as well as transportation challenges.
“The report’s focus on critical areas such as housing, infrastructure, and skilled labour shortages echo the Property Council’s long-standing advocacy for the development of Northern Australia, and its recommendations highlight the urgent need for strategic interventions in the Northern Territory and Northern Australia,” Ms Palmer said.
“The call for a review into the Federal Assistance Grants distribution formula is crucial.
“Ensuring equitable distribution and assessing the program’s effectiveness in remote and very remote areas is vital for local governments struggling with service delivery and sustainability.
“The review into current tax incentives to encourage living in Northern is essential for attracting and retaining a workforce, particularly in our remote regions.
“The recommendation for incentives for modular homes addresses the immediate housing crisis, a significant barrier to workforce development.
“As we’ve long argued, without adequate housing, attracting, and retaining local and migrant workers is exceedingly challenging.
“The development of a Northern Australia focused Regional Infrastructure Strategy and the exploration of a Regional Infrastructure Fund are steps towards building a sustainable infrastructure pipeline.
“Such initiatives will not only address skilled labour shortages but also bolster the housing and construction industry in regional areas.
“Importantly, the recommendation to fund and support long-term projects for training and employing First Nation’s peoples in housing construction and maintenance is a forward-thinking approach.
“The Property Council NT Division has been at the forefront of advocating for the development of Northern Australia, participating in roundtable discussions, forums, and working groups with local and federal ministers. This report’s recommendations align closely with their vision for the region – a vision of sustainable growth, inclusive development, and a vibrant community.
“We stand ready to collaborate with all stakeholders to implement these recommendations and drive forward the development of Northern Australia,” Ms Palmer concluded.
Media contact: Ruth Palmer | 0450 428 314 | [email protected]