with The Hon Martin Ferguson AM, MP
More Indigenous people will have access to job and training opportunities following the purchase of the Ayers Rock Resort by the Indigenous Land Corporation.
The Minister for Indigenous Affairs, Jenny Macklin, the Minister for Tourism, Martin Ferguson, and the Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development, Mark Arbib, today welcomed the Indigenous Land Corporation’s commitment to train and employ local Indigenous people as part of the Board’s decision to acquire the resort.
The Indigenous Land Corporation will establish a National Indigenous Training Academy at Yulara to train new resort staff and support the development of an Indigenous tourism and hospitality workforce for other facilities across the country.
The Indigenous Land Corporation expects the academy will train 200 people each year from 2013.
The Indigenous Land Corporation has acquired the Ayers Rock Resort from property group GPT in partnership with Wana Ungkunytja, representing business interests in the nearby communities of Mutitjulu, Imanpa and Docker River.
At present just a handful of the 670 staff at the resort are Indigenous, the Indigenous Land Corporation is aiming to employ 340 Indigenous staff by the end of 2018.
Each year, 172,000 international and 148,000 domestic overnight visitors travel to Uluru. As part of this acquisition the Land Corporation will help ensure that local Indigenous people get the opportunity to be involved in the tourism industry through targeted training and employment.
This new initiative complements the Australian Government’s commitment to increasing Indigenous economic development, and aligns with the approach outlined in our draft Indigenous Economic Development Strategy.
In May, the Government released the draft of the long-term strategy, which will be used to guide and inform future policy decisions in Indigenous economic development.
It focuses on five key areas for improving the prosperity of Indigenous people: education and individual capabilities; sustainable job opportunities; supporting business and enterprise development; financial security; and strengthening the foundations for economic development.
The development of an Indigenous tourism and hospitality workforce is a great example of practical solutions for delivering jobs and supporting sustainable economic development for Indigenous Australians.