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Remote ventures get $2.9 million lift.



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Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs

Media Release

Remote ventures get $2.9 million lift

09/08/2008

Joint Media Release with Senator the Hon Kim Carr, Minister for Innovation Industry, Member for Lingiari Science and Research, Member for Lingiari The Hon Warren Snowdon MP, Member for Lingiari

A project to help grow small business ventures and deliver sustainable jobs in remote communities will receive more than $2.9 million from the Australian Government.

Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Minister, Jenny Macklin, and Innovation, Industry, Science and Research Minister, Kim Carr, announced the funding today.

The backing includes $1.9 million from the Enterprise Connect Program and $1.07 million from the Aboriginals Benefit Account to support Desert Knowledge Australia's Linking Business Networks initiative.

"This is a great example of government and business working together to tackle the challenges faced by small businesses in remote locations," Ms Macklin said.

"The result is real benefits to communities in the form of sustainable jobs and enterprises."

Senator Carr said it was important that Indigenous businesses had access to programs like Enterprise Connect.

"We'll soon be opening a Remote Enterprise Centre in Alice Springs as part of the national Enterprise Connect network. The aim of Enterprise Connect is to link small and medium-sized businesses to ideas, technologies and markets," Senator Carr said.

"Desert Knowledge Australia's Linking Business Networks lines up perfectly with this goal and I'm pleased that we've been able to support this initiative in partnership with the Aboriginals Benefit Account and private sector partners."

Ms Macklin said Desert Knowledge brokers partnerships between business and government to help build sustainable industries in desert regions.

This project links remote small businesses with corporate and government networks to identify mutual opportunities.

It helps small businesses from areas like mining, tourism, bush products and food industries to overcome the twin challenges of distance and location.

The corporate sector is also on board with BHP Billiton, Qantas and Telstra contributing a further $2.5 million. The Northern Territory Government is also providing $600,000.

This announcement coincides with International Day of the World's Indigenous People when we celebrate the achievements, diversity and richness of all Indigenous peoples.

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