News and updates

Public comment sought on draft joint management plan for Ningaloo Coast

Public comment is being sought on the draft joint management plan for the proposed conservation and recreation reserves along the World Heritage-listed Ningaloo Coast.

The Nyinggulu (Ningaloo) coastal reserves draft joint management plan 2019 covers 70 400 hectares of coast, including the terrestrial portion of Ningaloo Marine Park and adjacent unallocated Crown land from Red Bluff to Winderabandi.

The creation of the proposed reserves will enable conservation of the significant natural and cultural values along the coast, and importantly provide ongoing access and recreational opportunities for all Western Australians and other visitors.

The area will be jointly managed by the Gnulli native title claimants and the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, with an Indigenous Land Use Agreement expected to be finalised this year.

The draft management plan is available on the department's website and is open for comment until 14 May 2019.

DPC media statement: Public comment sought on draft joint management plan for Ningaloo Coast (original)

Fairer pest rate targets Carnarvon fruit fly

The Western Australian Government has introduced a revised declared pest rate for Carnarvon growers to help rid the region of the destructive horticultural pest, the Mediterranean fruit fly (Medfly).

The revised rate follows extensive consultation to deliver a fairer system for Carnarvon growers, and will fund continued area-wide baiting as part of a broader pilot program to eradicate Medfly from the region.

A rate will now apply to all properties engaged in commercial horticultural activities based on the size of each property rather than the value of the property.

It will apply to some commercial horticultural properties that were not previously rated. This will broaden the base and see rates reduced for most growers.

The State Government will co-fund the eradication effort and, through the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, will produce and release sterile Medflies at no charge this financial year.

The Western Australian Government is investing more than $4 million into four Medfly projects, including $3.6 million into Carnarvon medfly eradication. The project has been successful in reducing fly numbers from more than seven flies per trap, per day at the start of the project to 0.5 flies per trap, per day in January 2019.

More information about this program is available from the department's website.

DPC media statement: Fairer pest rate targets Carnarvon fruit fly (original)

International visitors spend big in the Gascoyne

The latest Tourism Research Australia data for the Gascoyne bucks WA tourism figures

The Gascoyne welcomed 353,800 domestic (86%) and international (14%) visitors, spending a whopping $359 million across the region during the year ending June 2018. Spend by international visitors in the Gascoyne was up 24% from the previous year. The Gascoyne’s international spend was higher than the national figure which increased by 5%, while state international visitor spend was down 10%. One reason for this difference can be attributed to the signature, high-value experiences provided by the region’s industry. This was despite an overall decline in the number of international visitors to the Gascoyne. Visitation and spend by domestic visitors to the Gascoyne region also reported stronger growth than WA state statistics. Domestic visitation increased by 12% compared to the State (8%) while spend increased by 7% compared to WA (-2%). “Tourism is a dynamic and resilient industry here in the Gascoyne,” says Gascoyne Development Commission Chairman, Andy Munro, “at last count the industry has created 550 direct jobs and supports 200, typically small to medium-sized enterprises according to ABS data” he explains. “According to Tourism Research Australia figures, we’ve seen an increase in overall visitation to the Gascoyne in the last five years and a conservative 10-year doubling of visitor spend,” Andy says. “The Commission’s role is to lead and direct tourism policy, but the engine behind tourism development is the private sector, we cannot exist without each other. Public-Private Partnerships are vital for the region and the Commission is committed to develop and strengthen these.” The superlative attributes of two World Heritage properties, Shark Bay and Ningaloo Coast, not only strengthen Australia’s global tourism competitiveness, but they also provide a platform for an industry that delivers signature, eco-sustainable and world-class experiences. Kieran and Tori Wardle, run the increasingly popular tourism experience on Dirk Hartog Island. Kieran says, “There are so many exceptional products in our region that will attract visitors from all over the world. The most appealing aspect of the industry is that it’s being driven by young passionate entrepreneurs who are willing to share their story and help others achieve their goals.” Having just completed its third year of trials, swimming with humpback whales along the Ningaloo Coast is delighting guests and following the popularity footsteps that swimming with whale sharks has seen. And with a wealth of experience behind them, local operators are dedicated to providing a world-class experience as Sarah Ellis, owner of Ningaloo Discovery explains, “2018 was certainly a huge year for Ningaloo discovery. We had over a 20% increase in guests onboard for tours with us this season” going on to say, “humpback whale swim tours have developed into a sustainable tourism industry.” The Gascoyne was swaying in colour with the best wildflower season in a decade. Shark Bay boasts the longest running wildflower season in the state, and Instagram was awash with pink Shark Bay daisy, purple Mulla Mulla and Red Sturt Desert Pea. David O’Malley chief executive for regional tourism organisation Australia’s Coral Coast said, “the Gascoyne wildflowers were fantastic this season and provided great photography and social media sharing opportunities. Along with partnerships with local professional photographers to capture amazing footage, we ran the biggest domestic wildflower campaign in ACC’s history.” “We excite more than just sight and touch senses here in the Gascoyne too,” says Andy, “let’s not forget our taste buds.” Emerging as a diverse delicatessen of exceptional food, the Gascoyne’s Food Bowl status is also riding a global culinary tourism trend. Growing every year, the annual Gascoyne Food Festival was staged at stunning locations from Exmouth and Carnarvon to Mt Augustus Station. Cathy Sohler, general manager at Mt Augustus Tourist Park tells us, “We hosted our third and biggest ‘Australia’s Biggest BBQ at Australia’s Biggest Rock’ event this year while re-investing thousands of dollars into the event as well.” Carnarvon Visitor Centre Coordinator, Stephanie Leca said: “The community and Visitor Centre team have worked extremely hard to change the perception of Carnarvon and improve the visitor experience.” This effort was recognised when Carnarvon was awarded the GWN7 Top Tourism Town for a population under 5,000 people this September. Recently picking up Bronze in the Tour and Transport category at the 2018 WA Tourism Awards Justin Borg, chief executive and pilot for Coral Coast Helicopter Services confirms, “yes, we have seen some noticeable growth during our third season in the Gascoyne.” He elaborated saying, “I believe the Tourism Industry is set to further improve throughout the Gascoyne as more people become aware of what the region has to offer and we are excited as a company to already be planning for such growth.” “With tourism forecasts indicating growth in both domestic and international visitors, coupled with strong regional industry confidence, 2019 looks set to bring more success across our largest industry” states GDC Chairman Andy Munro, “we’re excited for the future of this key regional economic driver”. Tourism Research Australia Tourism Western Australia

Inviting EOI’s – Hastings Technology and Metals Limited

Local Gascoyne EOI's sought for potential opportunities.

Committed to driving local industry participation and workforce development, in 2018 Hastings Technology and Metals Limited started with the implementation of its flagship Yangibana project with an aim of commencing production in 2020. The Yangibana project covers an area of 650sqkm and is located 270km east-northwest of Carnarvon on Gifford Creek Station in the Gascoyne region of Western Australia. Ensuring their operations benefit local communities and indigenous persons is central to Hastings vision and values. Hastings are currently inviting expressions of interest from individuals, contractors and companies in the local community to register for potential opportunities. Register directly on Hastings website Hastings Technology Metals Ltd is a leading Australian rare earths company. Rare earths are critical in the manufacture of a wide variety of new consumer and industrial technologies. These range from flat-screen TVs and energy efficient light bulbs to hybrid cars, wind turbines and military hardware. For further information, please contact Jill Dwyer, Gascoyne Local Content Advisor, on 9941 7000 or email

Resilient Reefs

Ningaloo Coast WHA chosen as public-private consortium pioneers global leadership in climate adaptation across UNESCO World Heritage sites.

The Resilient Reefs initiative is a four-year, $US9 million global effort to build the capacity of five World Heritage coral reef communities to respond to climate change. This is a world first – coral reef managers working with global resilience experts and local community stakeholders to build and embed holistic resilience into managing World Heritage coral reef sites. The project will build climate resilience leadership in an initial five of the world’s most treasured coral reefs and their communities, including;

Why were these 5 sites selected?

These sites were selected for several reasons, including:
  • local leadership is engaged and ready to take action;
  • they are among the most ecologically significant and exceptionally biodiverse coral reefs on the planet;
  • World Heritage sites can be especially influential proof points for other sites around the world; and
  • their diversity in size, scale, and management will enrich the field with examples of how to deliver solutions in many different contexts

Program support to World Heritage coral reef sites includes;

  • Capacity building for local reef managers and stakeholders
  • Support in the creation and funding of a new Chief Resilience Office (CRO) position, who will be responsible for leading the site’s resilience building efforts
  • Detailed support in the development of a holistic Resilience Strategy focused on risk analysis and stakeholder engagement
  • Initial funding to implement actions designed in the strategy
  • Connection to a global Knowledge Network that supports learning exchanges among the 5 sites and scales lessons learned to reef managers globally

More information on the Resilient Reef Initiative can be found here;

UNESCO - World Heritage Convention Great Barrier Reef Foundation BHP Billiton Foundation UNESCO - Ningaloo Coast

Local Capability Fund – Regional Aboriginal Business Round

The State Government is providing a new round of Local Capability Fund to assist regionally-based Aboriginal businesses to secure procurement opportunities in the public and private sectors. The fund supports Businesses to improve their ability to participate as a supplier of goods, services and works to State, Federal or Local Government agencies and the private sector. Small and medium-sized regional Aboriginal businesses are encouraged to apply and seize this opportunity to build their capability and competitiveness. For more information:
  • Download a Regional Aboriginal Business Factsheet
  • Visit WA Industry Link
  • Contact Abigail Endersby from Department of Jobs, Tourism Science and Innovation on 9222 0470 or
  • For support from your Local Content Adviser contact or 9941 7000

Gascoyne Local Content Program

The Gascoyne Development Commission has a strong commitment to diversifying the region's economic base, the growth of business and entrepreneurship, retaining, attracting and developing skilled people, and maximising local jobs. To support this focus, the State Government has launched a Local Content Program to maximise the participation of regional industry in regional supply or works contracting opportunities. Recognising that it can often be challenging for businesses to access and engage as a supplier, a Gascoyne Local Content Advisers has been appointed to the Gascoyne Development Commission to take a lead role in promoting supply opportunities and facilitating regional business capability and growth. Your Local Content Advisers works with a range of stakeholders including government, industry groups and local businesses to tailor activities to respond to the unique requirements of their communities. The Gascoyne Local Content Adviser aims to:
  • Connect local businesses to supply opportunities in the region
  • Enable regional business to be competitive in regional procurement processes
  • Inform the design of government procurement activities to maximise local business participation.
For further information contact the Gascoyne Local Content Adviser or call (08) 99417000.
Gascoyne Local Content Adviser Local Content Advisers are available to provide advisory and referral services to businesses in regional areas. Their focus is on helping support regional businesses compete for State Government supply opportunities. This role is an essential component of the WA Industry Link initiative under the Western Australian Jobs Act 2017. The Gascoyne Local Content Adviser can assist with:
  • Understanding how to sell to Government
  • Find assistance to build supply chain capability and capacity
  • Identify upcoming government supply opportunities
  • Identify State and Federal Government financial assistance programs
  • Understand your rights and responsibilities under the Western Australian Jobs Act 2017and the Western Australian Industry Participation Strategy
  • Facilitate connecting head contractors with subcontractors
  • Participate in productivity and business capability activities

WA Industry Link Initiative  WA Industry Link provides businesses in particular small and medium-sized enterprises with more opportunity to compete for State Government contracts. The WA Industry Link initiative comprises of the Western Australian Participation Strategy, the Industry Link Advisory Service, regionally based Local Content Advisers and a web portal. The Local Content Advisers work in collaboration with the Department of Jobs, Science and Innovation to deliver the WA Industry Link initiative in the regions.
Connecting to Local Opportunities The Gascoyne  Local Content Adviser will help develop, promote and maximise opportunities for local businesses, contractors and jobseekers in the regions by connecting to relevant government, industry, businesses, Aboriginal Corporations, employment and training stakeholders. Western Australian government departments use Tenders WA to advertise their public requests and publish contractual awards, including sole source purchases. To register as a supplier, click Register Your Business to enter your business details and select the products/services that relate to your industry. This will enable your business to access the range of tender opportunities across the Gascoyne Region. To access a range of State Government tender platforms and register as a supplier go to Western Australian Government Opportunities.
Local Government To access a range of Local Government tender platforms and to register as a supplier go to Local Government Opportunities. Building Local Capability The government has in place a range of financial and advisory programs to help businesses build capability, capacity and competitiveness in the supply chain. Local Content Advisers promote these programs and support local businesses to access these opportunities. Local Capability Funds The Local Capability Fund is available to assist businesses in Western Australia to increase their capability and competitiveness as suppliers of products, services and works to the Western Australian State Government, major projects and other important markets. To access information on the current fund go to Advice and Programs to Build Capability. Further information, resources and support The WA Industry Link portal is an online source of information on how local businesses can maximise their opportunity to supply to government. The portal offers businesses and agencies a range of useful information, resources and access to Advice and Programs to Build Capability. For further information contact the Gascoyne Local Content Adviser or call (08) 99417000.

Tenders and Jobs WA

Find tenders in your region here   Find jobs in your region here    

The Gascoyne’s commitment to cutting waste

We're working to transform 17,000 tonnes of wasted fruit and vegetables created each year from the Carnarvon Horticulture industry into food and revenue.

Find out more about this innovative, topical and profit-driven project here.

Carnarvon is Top Tourism Town!

Town awarded honour at 29th WA Top Tourism Town Awards   In a first for Carnarvon, the town has won the Top Tourism Town Award for population under 5,000, announced at the annual WA Tourism Conference on Wednesday 5 September, at the Perth Convention Bureau. The prize of a $10,000 GWN 7 Advertising Package will provide a valuable boost for the hard-working business operators in the area.   Read the full press release here.