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The 'Right To Development' On Indigenous Lands

11th August 2015

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Professor Jon Altman has a disciplinary background in economics and anthropology. From 1983–90 he was a postdoctoral fellow, research fellow and senior research fellow in the Department of Political and Social Change in the HC Coombs Building.

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By Jon Altman

In the recently released White Paper on Developing Northern Australia, it is noted that many Indigenous Australians say that native title rights do not provide a basis for active participation in the economy.

Indigenous Australians sometimes talk about being ‘land rich, dirt poor’. In many cases, the White Paper suggests, native title does not currently provide a secure asset that promotes investment, unlike other Australians who can borrow against freehold title in their own home or business.

The issue of ‘land rich, dirt poor’ has bedevilled both land rights and native title in remote Australia for well over 40 years.

Read the entire article on The New Matilda.

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