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$119,000 for four Kakadu Indigenous tourism businesses.

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The Hon Greg Hunt MP David Tollner MP Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage

Member for Solomon

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$119,000 for four Kakadu Indigenous tourism businesses

The Hon. Greg Hunt MP, Parliamentary Secretary with ministerial responsibility for Kakadu National Park, and David Tollner, Member for Solomon, today congratulated the first Indigenous tourism businesses to win funding from the Indigenous Tourism Development Fund.

Earlier this year, the Australian Government made $150,000 available for Indigenous tourism businesses as part of $1.77 million in funding to accelerate the implementation of the report A Shared Vision for Tourism in Kakadu National Park. Energy Resources of Australia Ltd (ERA) also contributed $50,000 to the fund, bringing the total to $200,000.

The first four grants go to:

Kakadu Culture Camp - $49,750 to purchase, install and fit out eco-cabins at Muirella Park Campground. Kakadu Culture Camp was launched in April this year and offers a camp kitchen, bush tucker walks, a night time boat cruise, slide show on park history and open fire cooking of traditional Aboriginal food.

Murdudjurl Cultural Tours - $50,000 to construct public toilets, fit out the office, upgrade the Old School Art Gallery and fit out and equip a men’s art workshop. Murdudjurl opened this dry season, and this funding will help the fledgling business expand its visitor services and its support to local Bininj artists. The men’s workshop will supply didgeridoos and bark paintings to visitors.

Violet Lawson - nearly $4,000 for uniforms, communications equipment and the development of a sandwich board and a brochure to promote the Warrageng Cultural Walk from Mardugal Campground. Violet’s tour offers visitors a genuine interactive cultural experience from a traditional owner with extensive knowledge of Kakadu.

Hawk Dreaming Camp - $15,000 to establish grounds with irrigation and native plants at the Hawk Dreaming Camp at Cannon Hill following destruction caused by cyclone Monica.

“We’ve been delighted by the response from a range of new and potential Indigenous businesses in Kakadu,” Mr Hunt said.

“It is exciting to see new Indigenous businesses responding to the increasing demand from tourists for authentic cultural experiences.”

ERA Chief Executive, Harry Kenyon-Slaney, said the company was pleased to assist the region’s Indigenous entrepreneurs.

“Sustainable development in the region will depend on small businesses like these growing and prospering. We welcome the opportunity to play a role in this partnership between government, big business and local entrepreneurs,” Mr Kenyon- Slaney said.

Mr Hunt said a number of other applicants are being asked for further information before a decision can be made on their proposals. Another announcement will be made shortly about the remaining funding and unsuccessful applicants will be provided with information about further advice and support from the Northern Territory Government.

“I would like to thank ERA for their support for Indigenous tourism businesses,” Mr Hunt said.

David Tollner, Member for Solomon, said, “In addition, our thanks go to Tourism NT for their generous support for this initiative through their expertise and staff time in administering the fund on behalf of Parks Australia. We have developed a close partnership with the Northern Territory Government in implementing the Shared Vision for Tourism. Their support is invaluable and greatly appreciated.”

Media Contacts: Noel Martin (Mr Hunt’s office) - 0412 360 987 Michael Kauter (Mr Tollner’s office) - 0401 119 789