A strong future for Jabiru and Kakadu

The Northern Territory Government is committed to a strong and sustainable future for Jabiru and is investing $135.5M to help it transition from a mining town to a vibrant and sustainable tourism hub and service centre for Kakadu National Park and the West Arnhem region.

The NT Government has committed the $135.5M to:

  • Maintain essential services to infrastructure, such as local roads, electricity, water and sewerage
  • Construct a Bininj Resource Centre to support Aboriginal education and cultural preservation
  • Construct new power generation infrastructure for Jabiru
  • Construct new town infrastructure, including a Government Business Centre and retail centre;
  • Secure air access for Jabiru
  • Improve education and health facilities
  • Guarantee government services at current levels for five years (education, health, police and fire and emergency services)
  • Continue to negotiate with stakeholders to secure financial or in-kind contributions to the future of Jabiru and Kakadu.

The NT Government continues to work in collaboration with the Australian Government (through Parks Australia), Energy Resources of Australia Ltd and Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation as a party to the Memorandum of Understanding PDF (1.8 MB) signed on 14 August 2019, to secure Jabiru’s future as the gateway to dual-World Heritage listed Kakadu National Park and as a service centre for those living in the West Arnhem region.

Timeline will be released soon.

Jabiru Kabolkmakmen Ltd (JKL), a company jointly established by the NT Government and Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation, is guiding Jabiru in its transition to a post-mining future.

JKL has three priorities:

  • Support the transition of ownership, leasing and maintenance of housing, business premises and other infrastructure from the current town Headlease to new township leasing arrangements
  • Provide services to the founding members and other major stakeholders, which support and progress the detailed implementation of the Jabiru Masterplan
  • Facilitate social and economic development for Jabiru, West Arnhem region and Kakadu.

The NT Government recognises that the Mirarr people (represented by Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation) are driving the vision for the future of the town and the NT Government supports the plans the Mirarr have for Jabiru.

The Mirarr vision for Jabiru as a world leading, ecologically sustainable hub for Aboriginal culture that will continue to attract visitors from across the globe is outlined in the Jabiru Masterplan, which will guide the work of JKL.

The Commonwealth Government’s commitment in Jabiru is supporting its transition to a tourism-based economy. The Commonwealth is investing $216 million to upgrade Kakadu National Park which will include:

  • Tourism infrastructure, including roads, park facility upgrades (campgrounds, walking tracks, viewing platforms), and mobile connectivity in the park
  • World Heritage Interpretive Centre
  • Remediation
  • Kakadu Tourism masterplan and Roads Strategy.

The Jabiru Business Case is a key piece of research by the Stafford Strategy group, commissioned by Traditional Owners (represented by Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation). It is a tourism and economic development study that outlines key opportunities for Jabiru.

The Jabiru Business Case outlines how investments in the town must be complemented by investment in Kakadu National Park, including road upgrades, visitor amenity and a focus on improving access to the key tourist sites in the shoulder seasons. Read the executive summary of the Jabiru Business Case

The Memorandum of Understanding PDF (1.8 MB) (MoU) sets out the shared intention and commitments of the Commonwealth, the Northern Territory, ERA and the GAC to work together to support the Jabiru township transition to a post-mining environment in the context of the scheduled closure of the Ranger Uranium Mine and expiry of the Jabiru township head lease in 2021.

The Northern Territory Government commissioned Deloitte to assess the social and economic value of Kakadu National Park.

Deloitte found that the Park supports over 1,180 jobs and contributes $136 million to the Australian economy each year.

They also found the Park is a social asset worth $10 billion.

For further information on the Future of Jabiru, please email jabiru.futures@nt.gov.au

Last updated: 25 October 2021

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