Northern Australia Indigenous Engagement

Photograph of an Aboriginal girl

PM&C responds to calls from Indigenous leaders for greater engagement.

In June 2017, the Northern Australia Strategic Partnership, consisting of the Prime Minister and first ministers of northern jurisdictions, agreed to establish a Ministerial Forum on Northern Australia. In response to calls from Indigenous leaders for greater engagement, the first Ministerial Forum will be focused on improving engagement with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.

In addition, project-specific collaboration is under way to maximise employment and economic development opportunities for traditional owners as a result of the significant Commonwealth investment in northern Australia. For example, the Department is implementing measures under the Our North, Our Future - White Paper on Developing Northern Australia in 2016–17 to create local development, including:

  • initiatives to help Prescribed Bodies Corporates (native title corporations) build their capacity to engage with and attract potential investors
  • land administration and township leasing to enable economic development on communal land in the Northern Territory
  • land tenure pilots to broaden economic activity on communal land.

PM&C is a participant in the Whole-of-Government Inter-Departmental Committee on Northern Australia and is responsible for:

  • reviewing progress and preparing monthly reports on outcomes and risks on Indigenous land-related measures
  • advising on policy issues, government and industry priorities and program risks relevant to Indigenous land-related measures
  • delivering land-related measures and reporting to the inter-departmental committee on policy issues that may be pursued through the Office of Northern Australia or the Strategic Partnership.