Minister for Indigenous Affairs and Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, has paid tribute to the outgoing Giles Country Liberals Government and congratulated Labor leader, Michael Gunner, on today’s win in the NT election.
Senator Scullion said the government led by Adam Giles had left the Territory in a much better state than when it came to office and it had much to be proud of.
“The Giles Country Liberals Government significantly paid down the NT’s debt level and eased cost-of-living pressures with petrol, electricity and housing all more affordable today than when the Country Liberals came to office,” Senator Scullion said.
“The Country Liberals Government also did much to diversify the Territory’s economy, particularly through a focus on increasing tourism numbers. In 2016, there was a 29 per cent increase in tourism numbers on the previous year, and iconic developments like the new six-star hotel and waterfront development in Darwin, along with the Indigenous light festival in Alice Springs, are sure to see continued strong growth in tourism.
“The Giles Government did much to stimulate the business sector and this helped to drive better employment outcomes. Today, the Territory has the highest workforce participation rate in the country and the second lowest unemployment rate at 3.7 per cent.
“More broadly, I applaud the Chief Minister’s personal commitment to improving outcomes for our First Australians and call on the incoming Government to match Adam Giles’ approach.
“Under the Country Liberals, outcomes in Indigenous Affairs programmes have improved and delivered a more prosperous economy for Indigenous communities in the Northern Territory.
“For example, more than 1000 Indigenous people in the Northern Territory have now been employed in new jobs in the civil and construction sectors, Indigenous employment rates in the public service have increased to more than 2000 people and contracts are now being awarded to more Indigenous businesses than ever before in remote areas.
“The Country Liberals under Adam Giles’ leadership have given Indigenous Affairs the priority it needs and I look forward to working with the incoming Chief Minister, Michael Gunner, on maintaining this effort.”