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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 13 Hansard (Tuesday, 16 November 2010) . . Page.. 5425 ..

MR SPEAKER: A supplementary, Ms Le Couteur?

MS LE COUTEUR: Yes, Mr Speaker. Minister, was ACT specific analysis undertaken in determining the payments? If so, could you provide the Assembly with a copy? If not, how was the payment schedule developed?

MS BURCH: It is my understanding—and I am quite happy to come back with some advice—that we did look at our existing cost structures and we also compared them with other jurisdictions. As I said, I think we looked to New South Wales most particularly. Being an island state within New South Wales, it makes sense to do that. It is certainly my understanding that our global fee structures, or payment structures, for carers are indeed in excess of New South Wales.

MS BRESNAN: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Bresnan.

MS BRESNAN: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, could you explain why it is appropriate that the territory as a parent discharge its financial responsibility for the medical care of children and young people and rely on its carers to pay for visits to the doctor and the cost of prescriptions?

MS BURCH: I am happy to take some advice and come back. I do not think the territory as a parent would abrogate any of its responsibilities. The new cost structures have been reviewed and they have created a new global cost structure for care and out-of-home placements. I am quite happy to take that level of detail, but as a territory parent, as a principal, we would not abrogate any responsibilities.

Tourism—Asian market

MR SMYTH: My question is to the minister for tourism. Minister, on 12 March 2007, you decided to “pull advertising resources out of the Chinese market”. Minister, on 31 December 2009, following a “market review”, you closed the Singapore office of Australian Capital Tourism. This office had been operating since 2004 with the intention of tapping into the tourist markets of South-East Asia. Minister, yesterday, the Tourism Forecasting Committee, in the latest State of the industry report, said that China would contribute almost 30 per cent of the aggregate growth in tourism export dollars over the period to 2020. Minister, why have you turned your back on Asia as a source of tourists for the ACT?

MR BARR: I have not, and the member would be aware, of course, that having a direct flight into your city is an important aspect of tourism promotion. So until the Canberra airport begins its international operations, decisions were taken that it would be best to devote our limited resources in tourism marketing to areas of domestic marketing. However, we do recognise that there will be new opportunities that will open up for the city if international flights come directly to Canberra airport. I understand that—

Mr Hanson: Did you have a direct flight to Spain, Jon?

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