T-Ports is pleased to announce an unprecedented agreement with the Barngarla people which has provided them with a shareholding in the Lucky Bay port.
T-Ports Chief Executive Officer Kieran Carvill said the Lucky Bay Port Indigenous Land Use Agreement, which was initially registered with the Native Title register in 2018 and had recently been renegotiated to include T-Ports into the ILUA and, amongst other things, provide part ownership in the project by the Barngarla Determination Aboriginal Corporation, was of historic importance to both parties.
“We are deeply honoured to include the Barngarla Determination Aboriginal Corporation as partners in the T-Ports shareholder structure and recognise the rights of the first nation peoples as custodians of this land,” he said.
“As the owners of the first South Australian port to be constructed and become operational in the past three decades, T-Ports is proud to work with the Barngarla people. This agreement is the culmination of several years of discussions between all parties.”
As part of the agreement and the ongoing cooperation between T-Ports and the BDAC, T-Ports will look to develop a Barngarla Ranger program, support scholarships for Barngarla students and provide job opportunities.
Barngarla Chairperson Jason Bilney said that this was a proud day for all Barngarla.
“To successfully work with industry, and to renegotiate this agreement to benefit of both the project and Barngarla is very important to us,” he said.
“T-Ports have been good to work with. They have respected our ancient connection to our country, land and sea as traditional owners of the Eyre Peninsula. We have worked through changes that we needed and they needed. We are very proud to be part of a project which will help both our community and the Eyre Peninsula as a whole. We look forward to this project being successful for many years to come.”
Barngarla elder and deputy chairperson, Roderick Wingfield, added: “Nothing can happen without respect. T-Ports have respected us, and we respect this project. To own part of the project is something that our future generations can be proud of.”
T-Ports CEO Kieran Carvill said it is of key importance for all businesses to recognise that native title needs to be taken seriously and not regarded as some cash transaction or a cheap pay-out.
“We need to actively develop a culture of respect and inclusion, recognising that the first nation custodians of the land are exactly that,” he said.
“The Barngarla people are another key stakeholder group on the Eyre Peninsula to take ownership in this port, with growers who deliver grain to the port also taking a shareholding.”