Business bulletin - 24 September 2015

Opportunities in new development

The Gwalwa Daraniki Association is poised to take advantage of a major development about to commence in Darwin.

Under an agreement with the Northern Territory Government, the Gwalwa Daraniki Association (GDA) plans to unlock the economic potential of the land it administers, which includes the communities of Kulaluk and Minmarama.

The Northern Territory Government will work with the GDA to develop an economic master plan for three square kilometres of Crown land between Ludmilla Creek and Nightcliff.

Most of the Kulaluk lease will remain as conservation land, but plans have already been approved to develop a retail precinct and medical centre on land between Dick Ward Drive and Bagot Road.

Developer Citiland has awarded GDA a contract to identify, relocate and maintain all the cycads on the site.

Citiland Managing Director Alan Jape says this contract is the first of many to be awarded to the organisation, "GDA will maintain the cycads until we begin our landscaping and the cycads will be reinstated and form a feature of our landscaping plan."

He said the commitment to engage GDA is expected to generate employment, develop skills, and create opportunities for Aboriginal-owned businesses.

"We have developed a very good working relationship with the Board of the GDA over many years, and it is very pleasing to be able to begin the development process," Mr Jape said.

The Gwalwa Daraniki Association was granted a Crown lease in perpetuity in 1975 and today 140 people live at of Kulaluk and Minmarama.

Helen Secretary, chairwoman of the GDA, said the agreement opened up a brighter future for her community.

"This is about creating jobs and opportunities for our kids. Now the community will say what happens on our land," Ms Secretary said.

Darwin Port Trade Report

Increases in cattle exports, cement imports and cruise ship visits are among the major gains made by the Port of Darwin in the past year, according to trade results released last week.

The Port of Darwin 2014/15 Trade Report shows significant increases in key trade lines, positioning the Port to drive economic growth and job opportunities for the Northern Territory.

Key figures from the Port of Darwin 2014/15 Trade Report include:

  • World record cattle exports - 613 473 head, up by 51%
  • 125% increase in cement imports
  • 36% increase in rig tender visits, supporting the off shore oil and gas fields
  • Increased cruise ship visits
  • Imported cargo increased by 5%
  • China was the top trading partner with 48% of total cargo trade, including all dry bulk mineral exports.

Alice on the up and up

Alice Springs is set to gain an 'urban village' involving new apartments, tourist accommodation and shops, after a $100 million development of the old Melanka Resort site was approved last week.

The development is expected to create around 300 jobs during its construction phase.

As well as 190 new dwellings and 86 serviced apartments, the development will also include offices, a licensed club and child care centre.

With three buildings of eight storeys, the development will be the tallest in Alice Springs.

The exceptional development permit was granted for the planned eight-storey complex following extensive public consultation.

The Northern Territory Planning Commission has previously recommended that the CBD’s building height limit be lifted to eight storeys from three storeys.

Long term view for Asian engagement and trade

The draft NT Asian Engagement, Trade and Investment five year Strategic Plan has been launched before 400 Darwin business and stakeholder groups.

The key goals of this Strategic Plan include increased economic returns from a diversified range of exports; positioning the Territory as a pre-eminent supply and service hub in our region; building strong relationships with more Asian partners; making NT business more internationally competitive and improving our profile in the region.

Business Minister Peter Styles said the NT Government will work with local businesses to capitalise on opportunities for supply and service work with international oil and gas, minerals and defence sectors.

"Over the next five years the Northern Territory will be a gateway between Asia and Australia, with a high level of connection making us a natural hub for the region," Mr Styles said, "We are determined that Territory business will reap the rewards from this.”

The Strategic Plan is available for comment online at

Local firms interested in expanding their business internationally are encouraged to contact the Office of Asian Engagement, Trade and Investment for support and advice by phoning (08) 8999 5091 or emailing

Safe Work Month: register now

October Business Month and Safe Work Month coincide in October bringing Northern Territory businesses the opportunity to gain insights into best practice in worker safety.

NT WorkSafe and partner organisations will host 30 events across the Northern Territory, with workshops included this year, provided in response to participant requests for more in-depth discussion and instruction.

Territory businesses are invited to attend workshops on resilience, risk assessment and return to work plans.

As part of amendments to the Return to Work Act, businesses will be required to develop and implement a return to work plan if one of their workers is injured and incapacitated for more than 28 days. The purpose of a plan is to allow an injured worker to remain engaged with their workplace, receiving support and assistance to recover and successfully return to work.

The Safe Work Month program of events is available at

Having trouble finding staff?

We want to hear from you. The Department of Business is reviewing the Northern Territory Skilled Occupation Priority List (NTSOPL).

This list identifies the occupations critical to the functioning of Territory businesses, where supply of suitable workers isn’t meeting demand.

The Skilled Occupation Priority List guides decision-making in:

  • Northern Territory Government decisions on how to allocate funding for training, and employer incentives for apprentices.
  • Targeting skills in the Territory’s national programs to attract workers.
  • How business and industry plan their workforces.
  • How career counsellors in schools inform students of potential career opportunities.
  • Development and delivery of courses by Territory universities and registered training organisations.
  • Targeting qualified overseas workers to fill skills shortages through skilled migration schemes (including the NT’s Designated Area Migration Agreement).

If you are experiencing specific occupational shortages or difficulties please contact the relevant industry training advisory council. Go to the Northern Territory Government website to find an advisory council.

Read more about hard to fill jobs on the Northern Territory Government website.

Submissions are due to the Industry Training Advisory Councils by close of business Monday 26 October 2015.

To find out more contact Rob Floreani on (08) 8999 7758.

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Last updated: 14 February 2019