The Territory Labor Government today delivered the 2022-23 Budget – with a strong focus on making sure that our future growth benefits all Territorians, right across the Territory.
Budget 2022 is about investing in new industries and jobs, strengthening essential services, tackling the hard social challenges, and protecting the great Territory lifestyle.
To ensure the Territory can lock in future growth, as well as manage growth responsibly, the Government is investing more than $200 million to fast-track residential and industrial development across the Territory, including work on:
· The Middle Arm Sustainable Development Precinct;
· New suburbs of Holtze and Kowandi in Greater Darwin;
· New residential and industrial subdivisions in Katherine and Tennant Creek; and
· Substantial investments in residential and industrial development for Alice Springs.
As part of our ambition to build a $40 billion economy by 2030, Budget 2022 invests $21 million to progress the recommendations of the Territory Economic Reconstruction report, including accelerating the Territory’s Hydrogen industry, establishing a national centre for tropical aquaculture and advancing investment opportunities for our parks and reserves.
Budget 2022 also makes a $58 million investment to grow the tourism industry, including additional investments in international marketing, boosting major events, and funding a third round of the hugely successful Roadhouse to Recovery grants.
Budget 2022 continues record investment in infrastructure, including partnering with the Commonwealth on upgrades to the Stuart Highway, the Victoria Highway, the Barkly Highway, the Tanami Track, the Mereenie Loop and the Outback Way.
The Budget also builds on Government’s record investments in police, health, housing services and education – and supports hundreds of additional students to enrol in school-based vocational training to bolster the Territory’s workforce.
It also invests in rolling out the next stages of Territory Labor’s historic Aboriginal Justice Agreement.
The Budget shows the Territory’s economy is strong and getting stronger – estimated to grow by 8.8 per cent this financial year and 5.4 per cent next financial year. Jobs, unemployment and wages growth forecasts are all better compared to last Budget’s forecasts.
The Budget bottom line is also substantially stronger. The 2022-23 Budget forecasts a fiscal balance of deficit of about $1.1 billion – and is forecast to fall to just $17 million in 2025-26. This shows the Budget is heading back to balance and on track for surplus in 2026.
The Territory Budget has improved thanks to higher own-sources revenues, higher GST collections, and the continuation of the Government’s Budget repair strategy.