Creating jobs & growing the economy


Investment Territory’s core purpose is to achieve a sustainable and diverse $40 billion economy by 2030. Investment Territory focuses on:

  • taking investment opportunities to the market and bringing new business to the Territory;
  • helping major and significant project proponents reach their final investment decision and commence their projects; and
  • ensuring that the Territory is the best place to invest.

For more information and go to the Investment Territory website

We have a vision that by 2030 the Territory will be a world-class gas production, manufacturing and services hub.
Growing the Territory's gas service and supply industry and maximising local content is key to building a vibrant and resilient economy.

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Vision: By 2030, the Territory is a world-class gas production, manufacturing and services hub.

Darwin is home to a globally significant liquefied natural gas (LNG) export hub. The Darwin LNG and Ichthys LNG projects supply over 10% of Japan’s annual global gas imports.

The Northern Territory (NT) has developed the local infrastructure and expertise required to support high calibre projects, including the US$37 billion INPEX-led Ichthys LNG Project, the US$5 billion ConocoPhillips-led Darwin LNG Project and the $800 million Jemena Northern Gas Pipeline.

The Territory Government is committed to achieving its vision for a world-class gas production, manufacturing and services through its five point plan to:

  • Expand the world-scale Darwin LNG export hub
  • Grow the Northern Territory's service and supply industry
  • Establish gas-based processing and manufacturing
  • Grow research, innovation and training capacity
  • Contribute to Australia's energy security

Find out more information about gas-led growth at Our Territory Gas Strategy or learn more about the gas service and supply plan.

Dr. Alan Dupont AO

The Northern Territory (NT) Government supports the activities of the NT Defence and National Security Advocate Dr. Alan Dupont AO to promote our capabilities and capacity.

The NT has a critical role in Australia’s national security, including: energy, resources, maritime, biosecurity, economic and trade, immigration, military and border security. Darwin is also the regional hub for Australia’s international engagement and trade.

The NT defence economy is considered to cover the impacts of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) operational and training activities, manufacturing, supply and support for those activities and the broader economic effect of Defence personnel and their families living and visiting the NT. Other aspects of Australia’s national security have similarly important, albeit lesser, impact on the NT economy.

The 2020 Australian Defence Strategic Update and ongoing focus on maximising Australian industry involvement in Defence capability projects will create new opportunities in the Northern Territory over the coming decade and beyond. The Update has a projected investment into Defence of $270 billion over the next 10 years that will take annual defence spending beyond the 2 per cent of GDP committed to in 2013. This has significant implications for the Territory as the government re-prioritises the ADF's geographical focus on the immediate region.

To ensure that the NT is at the forefront of northern Australia’s contribution to a more prosperous and secure Australia, the NT Government will have a consistent presence in Canberra, the NT Defence and National Security Advocate. The NT advocate assists the NT in gaining the attention of influence with the Australian Government, the Department of Defence and defence support industries, the Australian Government national security and foreign military forces.

Major projects are significant contributors to the economic development of the Northern Territory (NT) including through the creation of jobs and business opportunities.

These projects may be:

  • private sector initiated
  • government facilitated.

The Investment Territory team in the Department of the Chief Minister and Cabinet leads the coordination, development and implementation of whole-of-government policies, strategies and major projects that drive diversity, productivity, development and participation in the NT economy.

The NT already has a track record of securing investment from proponents who look beyond the short term for significant investment opportunities.

Some of the world’s largest resource projects are located in the NT, including the $37 billion INPEX-led Ichthys LNG project.

The NT Government awards major project status to private sector initiated projects that are significant, complex and have strategic impact.

In early 2017, the NT Government reviewed and updated the major project status policy framework following a comprehensive consultative process. The revised framework sets out the process and requirements for major project status.

The objectives of the major project status are to:

  • attract and promote secure private sector investment to broaden and deepen the NT economy, and
  • assist the timely and effective delivery of major projects through efficient and consistent government processes.

For the project proponent, the benefits of major project status include whole of government support, coordination and facilitation, assistance in identifying and mapping regulatory approvals, a dedicated project case manager and facilitation of engagement with the Australian Government through a central and single point of contact.

The benefits of major projects for the NT include:

  • local business engagement in the project
  • attraction of new business to the NT
  • skills development and jobs for Territorians
  • expansion of the investor pool.

Since 2001, the NT has adopted a case management approach for projects that have been awarded major project status.

The major project status policy framework sets out the information government requires to assess applications for major project status.

Project proponents should familiarise themselves with the information required before submitting an application for major project status. Read more about the major project status policy framework.

For enquiries relating to major project status, contact Investment Territory by calling 08 8999 6617.

The following private sector initiated projects currently have major project status:

  • Alice Springs Hospital Accommodation - Whittaker Street Developments
  • Ammaroo Ammonium Phosphate Project - Verdant Minerals Ltd
  • Australia-Asia Power Link (AA Power Link) - Sun Cable Pty Ltd
  • Desert Bloom Hydrogen - Aqua Aerem Pty Ltd
  • HyperOne Network - HyperOne Pty Ltd
  • Molyhil Tungsten and Molybdenum Project - Thor Mining PLC
  • Mount Bundy Gold Project - Primary Gold Pty Ltd
  • Mount Peake V Ti Fe Project -  TNG Ltd
  • Mount Todd Gold Mine – Vista Gold Pty Ltd
  • Nolans Project -  Arafura Rare Earths Pty Ltd
  • Northcrest Real Estate Berrimah Project - Halikos Group Pty Ltd
  • Petrel Gas Project – Neptune Energy Australia Pty Ltd
  • Project Sea Dragon – Seafarms Group Ltd
  • Tiwi H2 – Provaris Energy Ltd

The Mount Isa to Tennant Creek Railway Project aims to link the existing Tarcoola to Darwin railway with the Great Northern Line operating from Mount Isa to Townsville.

The Northern Territory (NT) Government considers a rail link connecting the NT to north-western Queensland as critical for regional and national economic development and the creation of regional employment opportunities.

The project will provide rail connectivity through the Darwin to Townsville economic corridor and support the development of phosphate, agriculture, gas / liquids and other mineral exports along the rail corridor.

Prefeasibility studies

The NT, Queensland and Australian governments have commissioned preliminary investigations to understand the economic, commercial, technical, environmental and engineering requirements that may need to be addressed as part of any future development of the railway as part of the Darwin to Townsville  transport corridor.

The studies comprise the Strategic Options Paper and the Technical Assessment Program and are available on the Australian Government's Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities website.


Current work to support the project is focused on developing a more comprehensive understanding of the economic potential of the Barkly region through early-stage resources studies.

This includes:

  • Pre-competitive geoscience information being collected by the Australian and Northern Territory governments under the AU$100 million Exploring for the Future program. For further information go to the Australian Government's Exploring for the Future website.
  • Assessments of land capability, water availability and biodiversity assets by the NT Government to support land planning, reduce investment decision risk and encourage private sector investment. Land and capability studies are in various stages of development for the Barkly Tableland (Frewena), Tennant Creek West, Dunmarra, North Barkly and Western Davenport areas. For further information go to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources website.

The release of new geoscience and land capability information should generate new exploration and resource discoveries and unlock new investment opportunities in the region that could underpin future demand for the railway.

Map of Australia highlight the Northern Territory and proposed railway line from Mt Isa to Tennant Creek.


Email for general enquiries.

The Northern Territory Government has developed a framework for attracting people to the Territory, and encouraging those already here to stay for the long term. The Population Growth Strategy will be supported by annual Population Growth Action Plans.

Find out more

The Northern Territory Government is working to bring new life and vibrancy to Darwin. To drive population growth, create more jobs and cement Darwin as a fantastic place to live, work and visit.

We are working with the Australian Government and the City of Darwin to transform our city into a world class tourism and cultural destination.

To find out more, go to the City of Darwin website.

The Northern Territory Government established a co-investment fund to accelerate major and significant projects in the Territory.

The fund will support economic transformation projects and will help high growth potential Territory businesses to increase exports of goods and services both interstate and internationally.

For more information go to the Local Jobs Fund website.

Last updated: 20 May 2021

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