'Catastrophic' drop in construction work


Sir – The Territory has suffered a catastrophic 74% drop in the volume of civil / engineering construction work, according to ABS figures released on June 26.
It’s the largest reduction in activity of any State or Territory.
I agree with the Master Builders Association of Australia when they said infrastructure work gives a great bang for its buck.
As well as providing visible, confidence-building work in the immediate term, it also expands the economy’s capacity, flexibility and liveability for decades to come.
Action is needed now to address the Territory’s economic crisis. It is clear that there is no confidence in the private sector, as private investment in the NT is at historic lows.
Government-run stimulus programs were slated in the Langoulant Review as ‘unsustainable’ so it is time for the Gunner Labor Government to look at alternatives.
During Estimates, the Opposition uncovered that the Gunner Labor Government paid a WA company $139,185 for a report called Alternative Approaches to Funding and Financing Infrastructure.
The Opposition have asked the Chief Minister to table this report in Parliament and he refused.
We now call again on the Chief Minister to make this report public. What is he hiding?
We need to create a climate that encourages private sector investment.
Opposition Leader Gary Higgins (pictured).


  1. What sort of democracy is it when the taxpayer has funded / purchased a report yet for no apparent reason (it’s hardly an issue of national security) is the government willing to make public.

  2. Governments are addicted to outsourcing this kind of basic policy advice.
    It gives the Government a veneer of competence, while avoiding the possibility of being held accountable for something.
    However, once upon a time NT Treasury was more than capable of producing advice in this area – and likely still is.
    Perhaps the line of questioning on this could be expanded at the next committee sitting. As in: “Why is Mr Gunner wasting money on something his own Treasury is able to do?”

  3. @ Alex. The difference between democracy and tyranny is this: In democracy you are free to talk and keep talking while the government does what it wants.
    In tyranny you are told to shut your mouth while the government does want it wants.

  4. And yet I still can’t get a tradie around for a quote for house upgrades, because they are too greedy for juicy Government works.
    Rare to find a tradie nowadays who doesn’t own multiple properties early on in their work life.
    I chose the wrong career path obviously.

  5. @ Evelyne (Posted June 28, 2019 at 3:15 pm): Perhaps you should ask people working within the public service/bureaucracy about the difference between democracy and tyranny. On second thought, don’t bother – they all have to keep their mouths shut.

  6. “The best government is that which governs least.”
    Try to remember that kids.
    Don’t become a slave to the system.


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