Media release |
YORK AGREEMENT IS A FRAMEWORK FOR THE FUTURE
and Trade, Peter Beattie
Cape York Agreement is a Framework for the Future
Queensland Premier Peter Beattie today signed the historic Cape
York Heads of Agreement committing the Queensland Government to
working with local people and organisations to resolve land use
and conservation issues.
"My Government has repeatedly demonstrated that the best way
to resolve Native Title, land use and conservation issues is by
working closely together to negotiate outcomes that will work on
the ground," said Mr Beattie.
"It also provides a framework for the future.
"Cape York is a unique place and requires a unique approach
to deliver certainty for the communities, economic rewards and conservation
outcomes. This agreement is the blue print for that.
"Combined with the work we are doing through Cape York Partnerships
and the Cape York Peninsula 2010 process, the Heads of Agreement
provides a framework for the stakeholders to resolve competing interests
in a spirit of cooperation.
"The original parties to this agreement, representing Aboriginal,
Pastoral and Conservation interests had the foresight to get together
"I said in 1997 as Opposition Leader that the key to future
success, not only in this region, but wherever native title is an
issue, is finding and developing the common ground and goodwill
between indigenous and non-indigenous residents and conservation
and development interests.
"Unfortunately, the Coalition let it wither on the vine. Since
Labor came to office in 1998, we have been working away to breathe
new life into the agreement.
"Today is a major step forward in achieving agreement on a
sustainable future for Cape York.
"Like the resolution of Native Title for the Mining industry
and the South East Queensland Forest Agreement, the Cape York Heads
of Agreement shows that working with people was the best way to
"Cape York is a special and remote part of Queensland and
Government has an obligation to make sure that residents have economic
and lifestyle opportunities that do not threaten the high conservation
values of the region - the very nature of what makes it so special.
"A key element is the adherence to the CYPLUS requirement
to assess the regional, national and international environmental
and cultural significance of the region.
"This will ensure that one of the last wilderness frontiers
of this nation is properly protected for future generations.
"The comprehensive approach, which we developed in Opposition,
also recognises the ongoing occupation of the Cape by traditional
owners, their legal rights and their future participation in the
development and wealth of their region.
"And the Agreement will provide for tenure upgrades of pastoral
properties in the Cape to give added certainty to the industry.
"The people of the Cape showed great commitment to working
together through the CYPLUS process, and it is incumbent on Government
to seize the opportunity offered by this consensus."
Media contact: Steve Keating 07 3224 4500