Article – The Kimberley’s megalopolis site

by 11 July 2014

27 June 2014 Vernon Graham Queensland Country Life

THE shores of Lake Argyle in Western Australia’s Kimberley region have been unveiled as the preferred site for a new mega city in northern Australia.

The location was announced at the Northern Development Summit in Townsville organised by the ADC Forum, an independent think-tank.

An ADC working group looking at future population and infrastructure needs, headed by retired Admiral Chris Barrie, surprisingly chose Lake Argyle as the [...]

Article – Push to relocate Canberra public servants to northern Australia

by 10 July 2014

7 July 2014 Phillip Thomson Sydney Morning Herald

Sun-soaked cities at the top of Australia are crying out for Canberra’s federal bureaucrats to be relocated to the nation’s north.

Regional centres in northern Australia are energetically lobbying the federal government to decentralise the bureaucracy which, at the moment, keeps 40 per cent of its 160,000-strong workforce in the ACT.

The City of Townsville has even suggested limiting public service jobs offered in Canberra, faster career [...]

Article – Conflict over growth rate

by 2 July 2014

22 June 2014 Chris Burns North West Star

THERE could be a political contradiction involving the predicted fate of Mount Isa and received Royalties for the Regions funding.

The federal government’s green paper on Developing Northern Australia released two weeks ago shows that Mount Isa is expected to have the highest population growth among northern Australian regional towns within 12 years.

But Deputy Premier Jeff Seeney said Mount Isa’s resource industry was not growing last [...]

Article – Economic plan to ready Northern Australia for Asian population explosion and tap growing `middle class’ demand

by 13 June 2014

10 June 2014 Peter Michael Courier Mail

NORTH Queensland is pushing to be declared a Special Economic Zone – a tax haven with relaxed migrant work visas, and more dams, ports and power stations to build into its $60 billion-a-year economy.

Deputy Prime Minister Warren Truss will launch the Northern Australia green paper in Townsville today. The paper outlines plans to double Australia’s agricultural output and growing tourism and energy exports.

Asia’s middle class – [...]

Article – Own brand to open up north

by 12 June 2014

11 June 2014 Shane Wright and Andrew Tillett The West Australian

Northern Australia could have its own brand, tax breaks and special employment visas in a plan to develop the region into an economic powerhouse.

A Green Paper on northern development suggests a bigger role for the private sector in delivering a range of infrastructure but plays down calls for new dams.

The Government went to the election promising a northern Australia White Paper that [...]

Article – Asian workforce plan for Top End farms gets political backing

by 12 June 2014

5 June 2014 Matt Brann ABC Rural

The Northern Territory’s new parliamentary secretary for Northern Development has backed calls from Top End growers to expand the Seasonal Worker Program to address labour shortages in horticulture.

Country Liberal MLA and mango grower Gary Higgins, says the Territory’s mango industry would be better off, and could even expand, if workers were allowed in from South East Asian countries such as Vietnam.

He says the industry needs an alternative to [...]

Article – Bid to bypass visa dispute

by 4 June 2014

30 May 2014 Nick Butterly The West Australian

The Abbott Government will attempt to clear the way for companies to employ foreigners in some roles around major projects in WA’s booming oil and gas industry in a move that is likely to infuriate unions.

Assistant Immigration Minister Michaelia Cash will concede today the coalition may not be able to repeal a Bill pushed through in the dying days of the Labor government that demanded employers [...]

Article – Northern Australia: Housing, mining top agenda as teenagers share perspective on NT development

by 30 May 2014

24 May 2014 Mark Di Stefano ABC News

Teenagers from the Northern Territory have expressed negative views about living “down south” amid fears for the future of the mining sector in the Top End.

The 16- and 17-year-olds were brought together by the ABC to discuss the issues surrounding the Northern Australia White Paper as Federal Parliament’s joint select committee holds public hearings in the Territory.

Gary Higgie from Taminmin College pointed to the mining [...]

Article – Development in northern Western Australia held up by red tape, high living costs, MPs told

by 9 May 2014

6 May 2014 Erin Parke and Gian De Poloni ABC News

High living costs and government red tape are inhibiting economic growth in Western Australia’s north, a parliamentary committee investigating the development of northern Australia has heard.

A public hearing of the Inquiry into the Development of Northern Australia was held in Broome and MPs heard from more than a dozen organisations about what could be done to boost populations and productivity in the Kimberley.

[...]

Article – Darwin growth spurt fuelled by LNG

by 8 May 2014

28 April 2014 Carl Curtain ABC Rural

The face of Australia’s most northern city is changing.

High rents, high-vis clothing and high-rise buildings are now synonymous with living in Darwin.

It hasn’t always been the case, though.

Not so long ago, this now bustling capital city was described as a small country town, on the edge of the coastal outback.

But now, the strong demand for a cleaner source of energy in Asia is bringing [...]