Economy worsens: Higgins


p2239-Gary-Higgins-2LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Sir – The Territory government continues to preside over a worsening economy, reinforced by a terrifying $1.18b wiped from real estate sales (for 2017/18) in comparison to sales for the 2014/15 year.
The latest figures were released by the Real Estate Institute of Northern Territory in its Real Estate Local Market Report (June Quarter 2018).
Sales and occupancy figures paint a bleak picture for the Territory’s economy, government income through stamp duty and population growth.
The NT desperately needs a population growth stimulus.
The government’s focus must be to create jobs and grow the population, not just talk about it as they been doing.
The just released CommSec State of the States Report reinforces just how badly Labor has managed the Territory economy, steering it from good to bad, and bad to worse.
The NT continues to trail almost all of the rest of Australia, holding seventh position (out of eight, only just ahead of Western Australia).
The weak local conditions are highlighted when one sees that the NT remains the weakest for housing finance with trend commitments 26.1% lower in the June quarter over the decade average.
The CommSec report illustrates what Territorians and businesses are already saying – that the Labor government has failed to attract private investment, failed to stimulate the economy and failed to drive population growth.
Population growth for the Territory is crucial to a turnaround for our economy. The report rightly points out that the outlook for the NT is constrained by weak population growth.
Equipment investment in the Territory is down 17.1% over the decade average, which reinforces that Labor has no plan to plug the investment hole left from INPEX.
There is a lot of talk from Labor about the economy, but put simply, the government is failing the Territory and Territorians.
Gary Higgins (pictured)
Opposition Leader


  1. Refugees, asylum seekers should reside in Alice Springs for three years or be sent home.

  2. Alice Springs is a very small place with a very high crime rate – the population will keep going down until something is done about it.

  3. What a total crock of shite.
    The reason why property prices are plummeting is because the previous government that Gary was a part of did nothing in terms of planning for future projects after INPEX was finished.
    The real reason why this happened was because it was too busy imploding on itself and the CLP squabbling amongst themselves rather than governing properly or addressing the fact (perhaps deliberately as they saw the writing on the wall for their government) to the fact that we were careening towards the economic cliff edge.
    And people wonder how things have snowballed since? (Facepalm), it genuinely baffles me.
    And now Gary who was one of the few survivors who made it after voters punished them is now trying to disassociate himself with his own legacy and shift it onto anyone but himself. Were you not born with a backbone? Take some bloody responsibility.
    So here we are.
    Now with INPEX over and with thousands of workers packing up and taking off, Darwin and the areas immediately around it are experiencing drops in rental prices and property prices as these extremely high paid jobs take off elsewhere and the landlords who for years were price gouging locals are forced to accept that few people outside of those industries are prepared to pay that much for their inflated apartments or properties (see “reality check” for further details).
    This was always going to happen unless other projects were started well prior to keep the wheels of the economy turning.
    Elsewhere in the Territory, prices are still fairly business as usual and in places like Alice Springs, rentals are actually climbing and the local economy is in many ways stable or growing, particularly around tourism.
    What people fail to appreciate is that big projects and plans take years or even decades to get off the ground.
    If there was going to be something to plug INPEX it probably would have needed to start before the current government took the reins to go through all the legal compliance, planning and approval stages for it to be properly underway before INPEX finished (which it only just did). It is as simple as that.
    Meanwhile (and think what you will about the current government) but the current government realising that the writing was on the wall when they took the “books” over and saw the looming crisis in its first administration (see “poisoning the well”).
    To try to sort this it has made a desperate attempt to keep the ball rolling and to prevent further cuts to its GST budget by approving fracking to keep these gas workers here (or at least bring them back) and has been approving new mines left right and centre, along with this $200m hotel district in Darwin they’ve just signed off on in an attempt to push things along again. (Yet again however, it will take years to get these things properly sorted).
    If Mr Higgins had the foresight to do something he probably would have. Regrettably it seems he does otherwise it would seem to suggest that his side put the politics of sabotaging the incoming government in an attempt to derail the NT economy above the principles of sensible governance and the prosperity of his fellow citizens.
    And now to top it off, his Liberals team and Malcolm Turnbull (see “puppet master”) have cut the GST in an attempt to drive our Territory into further crisis.
    You want something done about the social crises in the NT? How do you intend to pay for it?
    Nothing could be more reckless than to kneecap our economy through either deliberate scorched earth political policy or outright incompetence and then to exacerbate the social issues we have by encouraging the Feds to cut back to push the Territory to breaking point.
    And then this smoke and mirrors misinformation?
    Mr Higgins, if you have a shred of honour and decency about you, fall on your own sword Sir. Seriously. Fall on your own sword.


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