Jobs Events Advertise Newsletter

Parliamentary committee to examine the untapped potential of First Nations businesses

Brendan Foster -

Despite contributing to the Australian economy First Nations business have gone largely unnoticed by past governments, according to the chair of a federal parliamentary committee.

The Joint Standing Committee on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Affairs recently launched a new inquiry into improving the economic well-being and opportunities for First Nations people.

The inquiry will also look at ways to build the economic and social infrastructure of First Nations businesses to support economic prosperity in the Indigenous economy in the long term.

It's estimated First Nations businesses contribute around $5 billion to the national economy each year.

Committee chair and Mutthi Mutthi and Wamba Wamba Senator Jana Stewart said First Nations businesses had been exceeding all expectations.

"They are creating significant benefits for First Nations Australians; generating and growing economic prosperity as well as contributing to the wider Australian economy," she said.

"Blak-owned businesses are at the heart of creating a new generation of business owners who are growing networks, assets and long-term prosperity."

According to First Australians Capital Limited, more than 12,500 First Nations businesses make up the Indigenous economy.

It's estimated that revenue from Aboriginal companies is growing faster than the small to midsize enterprise sector.

The University of Melbourne's Indigenous Business Snapshot Study found there had been a 74 per cent increase in the number of First Nations businesses over 12 years from 2006 to 2018.

More than 22,000 jobs have been created and there has been a 115 per cent growth in gross income during the same period.

Senator Stewart said access to economic opportunities and participation in financial self-determination for First Nations people had far-reaching benefits.

"It is fundamentally important that we investigate the opportunities for improved training, employment and business development to support the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander industry and create economic, social and cultural benefits," she said.

The Committee is also planning to explore the untapped potential of leveraging First Nations intellectual property, the Indigenous Estate and First Nations skills.

The Committee wants First Nations organisations and individuals to submit submissions to the inquiry to learn about opportunities and impediments to training, employment and business development for Indigenous businesses.

Submissions can be made by Friday 24 May 2024.

Further information on the inquiry, including the terms of reference and how to contribute, is available on the Committee's website.


New Caledonia starting to calm after nights of strife
French police reinforcements have begun arriving in New Caledonia in a massive...
Supreme Court sets date for strip search class action against NSW police
The New South Wales Supreme Court has set a date for the strip search class acti...
Dechlan Brennan 18 May 2024
Māori masters graduate finds home in urban planning
Arizona Haddon, a recent Masters graduate in Urban Planning from the University...
Joseph Guenzler 17 May 2024

   Brendan Foster   

Indigenous helpline 13YARN inundated with racism-related calls post referendum
More than a quarter of calls to the First Nations-led national crisis support se...
Brendan Foster 16 May 2024
Jacinta Price repeats calls for audit into Indigenous spending
Shadow minister for Indigenous Australians Jacinta Nampijinpa Price has repeated...
Indigenous housing national peak body slams federal budget
The peak body for First Nations community housing has slammed the Albanese gover...
Brendan Foster 16 May 2024
First Nations dance college receives $13 million in Federal Budget
One of Australia’s premier First Nations training colleges has received $13 mill...
Brendan Foster 15 May 2024