“I look forward to continuing to work with the Northern Territory and await further advice from Treasurer Manison on how they intend to get their budget back on track.”
This statement was made Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg (pictured) today, in reply to questions put to him and Prime Minister Scott Morrison by the Alice Springs News Online.
The statement indicates that no bailout has been offered by Canberra.
Mr Fryenberg said: “I had a constructive discussion with the Northern Territory Treasurer this week about the economic challenges facing the Territory.”
The News put the same questions CLP Senator for the NT, Nigel Scullion, but received no reply.
The questions were:–
• Will the Federal Government bail out the NT Government?
• If so, on what conditions?
• How much will it spend?
• Given that the NT is not a state, and Canberra can overturn NT decisions, and that the preceding (Giles) government, without Federal consent and knowledge, sold the 99 year lease to Port Darwin to a Chinese company with reported links to that country’s military, is there a case for Canberra to pay more attention to what happens in the NT?
• If so, to what avail?
• If so, does Canberra have ultimately responsibility for the current NT Budget crisis?
• If so, what will you do about it?
• Is return to “Canberra control” such as it existed before self-government, an option being considered?