The Hon. J. HATZISTERGOS: My question is to the Minister for Fisheries. How is the Carr Government assisting in developing the State's growing aquaculture industry?
The Hon. E. M. OBEID: As this House already knows, the Carr Government, like no other in this State, is determined to use every opportunity to develop our growing aquaculture industry.
The Hon. M. J. Gallacher: "Like no other in this State"—that is a good line. Who wrote that line?
The Hon. E. M. OBEID: A member from the Central Coast should be keen to listen to what we have in store for the aquaculture industry. As always, the Government listens to the needs of all stakeholders and has provided the resources needed to support this growing sector. Our aquaculture industry is a key New South Wales agribusiness, worth $40 million a year. With the right advice from Government, this industry will grow to one worth hundreds of millions of dollars and will create vital jobs in regional New South Wales. Today the Carr Government strengthens our commitment to aquaculture. I am delighted to announce the appointment of a new Ministerial Advisory Council on aquaculture. This Council will provide me with valuable advice on research, marketing, funding and industry development. The new chair of this committee is Alistair Fotheringham, who is an expert in investment and the corporate finance sector and a former general manager of the ANZ Bank. He is a very reputable person.
Alistair Fotheringham will lead a team of 13 members who have been selected for their expertise in aquaculture. They bring to their new positions experience which includes product development, banking and finance, marine aquaculture and freshwater fisheries expertise. The council's membership includes representatives from indigenous and recreational fishers, conservation groups and New South Wales Fisheries. Each member will consult widely with all stakeholders and the advisory council will meet approximately four times a year. I look forward to working with this new advisory council in further promoting our aquaculture industry.
The Hon. M. R. EGAN: If honourable members have further questions, I suggest they put them on notice.