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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 9 Hansard (20 September) . . Page.. 2955..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

It is consistent with other attacks which the Liberal Party makes on business. Yesterday, in this place, Mr Seselja or Mr Pratt referred to the management of the Gungahlin Drive extension as an absolute disgrace—a reference to Ross Barrett and Woden Contractors. I must say that I wonder what Mr Barrett would think about the claim that his stewardship and his construction of the Gungahlin Drive extension was a disgrace. We know of Mrs Dunne's hatred of Mr Terry Snow.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Come back to the question.

Opposition members interjecting—

MR SPEAKER: Members of the opposition, be quiet.

Mr Pratt: We were talking about your governance of it.

MR SPEAKER: Including you, Mr Pratt.

MR STANHOPE: It was a very significant event, and the government is particularly pleased at the strength of its partnership with representative business constituent organisations in the ACT and our strong partnership with the Canberra Business Council in the delivery of Focus on Business. It is a relationship that I am sure is the envy of the Liberal Party in this place. I am very pleased at the strength of the relationship. It is consistent with the strength of that particular partnership between the ACT government and the business community, particularly the Canberra Business Council, that the Focus on business conference theme this year was partnerships for growth. That is what Focus on Business is about. It is about ensuring that we capitalise on our strengths and create partnerships, as a community very dependent on a vibrant and growing private sector.

This particular Focus on Business showed, in the view of the Canberra Business Council and other significant business entrepreneurs within the territory—particularly those entrepreneurs within the IT and the biotechnology sectors that were visible at Focus on Business—the vibrancy and the dynamic nature of the burgeoning private sector. That was on show and was showcased to over 200 business representatives from around Australia and, most significantly, major business delegations from the United States, Ireland and Hong Kong.

It is in that context that we repeat our concern and regret that the Liberal Party thought that this was an appropriate event to boycott and that, again, they do not wish it reported on here today by the minister responsible for this particular matter.

MS PORTER: I ask a supplementary question. Chief Minister, can you elaborate on the increasing recognition of the local wine industry, both here and overseas?

Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, Mr Speaker: that question is definitely out of order. There was no reference in the first part of the question to the wine industry.

MR SPEAKER: The question referred to industry.

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