Speech to NT Resources Week
I would like to begin today by acknowledging the Traditional Custodians of the land on which this event is taking place, the Larrakia people, and pay my respects to their Elders past and present.
I extend that respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in the audience today.
As you all know we will have a referendum on October 14 to grant constitutional recognition to First Nations people and to create a Voice to Parliament.
This is a once in a generation opportunity for every Australian to bring our country together and change it for the better.
Indigenous Australians are asking us to say Yes.
So I would ask everyone in this room to say Yes to recognition and to listening.
Thank you to the Northern Territory Government and Informa Australia for inviting me to speak.
I would obviously love to be there in Darwin with you all but I still greatly appreciate the opportunity to be a part of Northern Territory Resources Week.
Resources Week in the Territory is always a significant event and a terrific chance to reflect on the major contribution the Top End makes to the nation’s resources sector.
The road to net zero runs through the resources sector.
And the Northern Territory has a central role to play in supporting the transition to net zero.
Critical minerals will be crucial to both achieving net zero and to Northern Australia’s economy.
I announced the Government’s new Critical Minerals Strategy in June.
It outlines the Albanese Government’s vision to grow Australia’s wealth, create Australian jobs in mining and manufacturing, strengthen global clean energy supply chains, and support the world to achieve net zero emissions.
As one of the first policy decisions under the strategy, I announced the Government would target 500 million dollars of new investment into critical minerals projects in the north, via the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF).
Investing in infrastructure through vehicles like the NAIF will position Northern Territory businesses to harness new economic opportunities presented by the critical minerals boom.
Lithium and battery supply chain projects
There are already several critical minerals and battery projects making an impact in the Top End.
Core Lithium is developing the world-class Finniss lithium project, which lies in one of the most prospective areas for lithium in the NT.
I was pleased to see Core Lithium’s first shipment of high-grade Finniss project spodumene concentrate from the Darwin Port in April 2023.
We have committed one-point-five-billion-dollars in planned equity to build common-user marine infrastructure at Middle Arm.
As your Chief Minister Natasha Fyles says, Developing Middle Arm as a sustainable development precinct will create opportunities for the energy transition, exports and jobs.
It will unlock market opportunities in emerging industries, including green hydrogen, advanced manufacturing, carbon capture and storage, critical minerals processing and lower CO2 emissions from LNG, along with manufacturing of precursor battery cathode materials as proposed by Avenira.
Future Gas Strategy
I announced the development of a Future Gas Strategy at this year’s Budget.
Gas will continue to play a critical role as a flexible and dependable source of energy as we transition to renewables.
The Future Gas Strategy will consider the role of gas in this shift.
Public consultation will open soon, and I encourage everyone to participate in this conversation.
I am excited about working with all stakeholders across the Territory to ensure that resources continue to prosper, providing the NT and the nation with a pipeline of secure, well-paying jobs and a robust economy for years to come.
Thank you, enjoy the week and I look forward to visiting the Territory again soon and seeing many of you in person.