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The Northern Territory wants more people to come and live up north and is offering cash incentives to families, couples and individuals willing to do so.
The government says it will invest $9.3 million to attract more people, including migrants, to the Territory with families being offered more than $15,000 over five years to move to NT to work in "high priority jobs".
This announcement is part of the Northern Territory Population Growth Strategy 2018-2028, where the government hopes to add 21,000 new jobs and $10.4 billion to the NT’s economy in the next decade.
The incentives include relocation costs, one-off local spending benefit and retention bonus and will be made available to individuals, couples and families willing to move to NT.
Singles will receive $3000, couples will receive $6000 and families will receive $7000 as a relocation bonus.
The one-off local spending benefit of $1250 will be offered after six months of living in the NT which may be used towards costs incurred within the Territory, including vehicle registration, child care and eating out.
After five years in the Territory, families will receive another $7000 retention bonus, Singles and couples will receive $3000 and $6000 respectively.
"Just about every regional centre in Australia is trying to grow their population. It's a national trend," Chief Minister Michael Gunner said.
“From November 2018, people who migrate to the Northern Territory from interstate and enter High Priority occupations listed on the Northern Territory Skilled Occupation Priority List will be eligible for these incentives,” the strategy says.
“NT wants accountants, engineers, chefs”
Over 53 occupations have been listed as high priority occupations and it includes accountants, hotel managers, software engineers and mechanical engineers.
High priority occupations
|ANZSCO CODE||OCCUPATION||ANZSCO SKILL LEVEL|
|111111||Chief Executive or Managing Director||1|
|121312||Beef Cattle Farmer||1|
|131112||Sales and Marketing Manager||1|
|133111||Construction Project Manager||1|
|133513||Production Manager (Mining)||1|
|135111||Chief Information Officer||1|
|135112||ICT Project Manager||1|
|139911||Arts Administrator or Manager||1|
|141311||Hotel or Motel Manager||2|
|142111||Retail Manager (General)||2|
|223111||Human Resource Adviser||1|
|223311||Training and Development Professional||1|
|241111||Early Childhood (Pre-primary School) Teacher||1|
|242211||Vocational Education Teacher||1|
|2611*||ICT Business and Systems Analysts||1|
|2621*||Database and Systems Administrators, and ICT Security Specialists||1|
|3131*||ICT Support Technicians||2|
|321211||Motor Mechanic (General)||3|
|342111||Airconditioning and Refrigeration Mechanic||3|
|351411||Cook (includes Ethnic Cuisine)||3|
|411511||Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Worker||2|
|411712||Disabilities Services Officer||2|
|411714||Parole or Probation Officer||2|
|421111||Child Care Worker||4|
|423111||Aged or Disabled Carer||4|
|423313||Personal Care Assistant||4|
* Four digit ANZSCO Unit Group code incorporates occupations within this group. Example ANZSCO Unit Group code 2544 - Registered Nurses has 13 individual occupations within the next level.
Source: NT Department of Trade Business and Innovation.
In addition, the Northern Territory Government will also negotiate a refreshed Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA II) with the Commonwealth Government to allow Territory employers to sponsor skilled and semi-skilled overseas workers in areas experiencing skill and labour shortages.
“Arresting population decline and boosting economy”
The strategy mentions research conducted by the Charles Darwin University’s Northern Institute which found five years is the tipping point after which new residents are most likely to remain long-term.
Forecasts show the Territory’s population is likely to fall by 0.7 per cent this financial year.
This population plan aims to arrest that decline and return growth to its historical average of 1.4 per cent.
If this growth is achieved, Mr Gunner said it would add about 21,000 jobs and more than $10 billion to the economy over the next decade.