28 November 2023

Mr DAVID LAYZELL (Upper Hunter) (12:19): My question is directed to the Minister for Industry and Trade. What did last weekend's blockade cost the workers of the Upper Hunter, what did it cost the Hunter economy and what did it cost the New South Wales economy?

The SPEAKER: I think that was three questions. I will allow the Minister to answer but I refer the member for Upper Hunter to the standing orders regarding the formulation of questions.

Mr ANOULACK CHANTHIVONG (Macquarie Fields—Minister for Better Regulation and Fair Trading, Minister for Industry and Trade, Minister for Innovation, Science and Technology, Minister for Building, and Minister for Corrections) (12:19): I thank the member for his question. The New South Wales Government is committed to ensuring that our industry and trade continues to grow. We are a proud State that is focused on ensuring that we have good, well-paying jobs and industry to grow for the future. I know in recent times the growth of coal exports to New South Wales is about $40 billion to $55 billion. We know that is an important industry for us, supporting workers across New South Wales not only in the Hunter but across the whole supply chain. On top of that, when thinking about industry, we also have to think about what the flow-on effects are to manufacturing. This Government is totally committed—

The SPEAKER: Order! I call the member for Oatley to order for the first time.

Mr ANOULACK CHANTHIVONG: We are totally committed to the manufacturing industry, supporting our industry and trade.

The SPEAKER: Order! I call the member for Oatley to order for the second time.

Mr Dugald Saunders: Point of order—

The SPEAKER: I remind the member for Oatley that he is on two calls to order. The Clerk will stop the clock. The member for Dubbo rises on a point of order. The Minister will resume his seat.

Mr Dugald Saunders: It is under Standing Order 129. So far the Minister has not come anywhere near answering the question.

Ms Yasmin Catley: You asked about industry.

Mr Dugald Saunders: We are asking about the impact of a blockade that you supported and encouraged and it is on you. So what is he doing about it?

The SPEAKER: I uphold the point of order. However, I warn the member for Dubbo if he behaves in that manner again he will be not called to order but removed from the Chamber immediately. I will not put up with such behaviour. The Minister has not been directly relevant to the question. I understand that. I appreciate that it is somewhat difficult to answer the question directly because of the way it was phrased, which was almost out of order. The Minister will continue.

Mr ANOULACK CHANTHIVONG: On that day, people still went to work and they still got paid. Our industry is still moving along. Industry and trade supports one in five jobs in New South Wales and one in four jobs in the regions. That is why we will continue to ensure that we support industry and trade to ensure that the economic bounty is shared among all citizens of New South Wales, particularly those in the regions. People still went to work. They still got paid. They are still contributing to the economy. They are still adding to our economic growth.

Mr Dugald Saunders: Point of order: It is under Standing Order 129. The Minister is clearly flouting your ruling.

The SPEAKER: I thank the member for Dubbo for his interpretation. I do not agree with it. The Minister has not flouted my ruling. He returned immediately to the question and was directly relevant. The Minister has the call.

Mr ANOULACK CHANTHIVONG: Mr Speaker, I would never flout your rules, unlike members of the Opposition. Your rules are important. I agree with all of your rulings. Industry and trade is the engine room of New South Wales economic prosperity—one in five jobs across New South Wales; one in four jobs across the regions. People went and got work. People went and got paid, and they are contributing to the economic wellbeing for the people of New South Wales. I will continue to support industry to ensure that we continue to provide the jobs and the opportunities for the people of New South Wales, and so will this Government.