12 February 2014
Karratha’s business lobby is hoping its recent talks with Federal Government representatives will help shape the proposed northern Australia white paper.
The town’s chamber of commerce and industry is preparing to make a submission to the Committee on Northern Australia after a federal delegation visited the Pilbara last week.
Chamber president John Lally says topics discussed included the large fly-in, fly-out population, developing infrastructure to boost tourism and cutting red tape for local businesses.
He says the most important issue is the possibility of tax benefits to attract people to permanently live in the region.
“They are serious about it. There’s a lot of misinformation going out all the time continually and that’s the main thing,” he said.
“What taxation arrangements can they make to make living here more attractive than flying people in, we talked about that.
“The other thing we talked about was is there potential here for developing some sort of defence base in this area? They seem to be genuinely interested in having a crack at it.”
The deputy chairwoman of the committee says it has a very rushed time frame to complete the white paper.
The Federal Government expects the final report to be completed by July.
The committee has extended public submissions and will go on the road for six weeks starting this month to visit several towns to hear from local residents.
Deputy chairwoman, Labor’s Alannah MacTiernan, says although it is a rushed time frame, she expects the paper to be comprehensive.
“We really do want to hear from the average person up there,” she said.
“We really want people to come and tell us what their vision is and where they would really like to see their region going.”
Courtesy of ABC News
12 February 2014