By Juliano Oliveira
Queenslanders concerned about the economic directions in the state have finally heard from Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk as she announced a recovery plan for the region.
Titled “the Queensland Economic Recovery Strategy: Unite and Recover for Queensland Jobs“, the project envisages public-private partnerships to restore the state’s economy.
As her flagship, Ms Palaszczuk wants to promote more than $50 billion in infrastructure investments over the next four years.
The tripod of this strategy is based on a $400 million “Accelerated Works Program”, encompassing new roads, bridges and pavement sealing works across the state, a $200 million in 2020-21 for a “Works for Queensland” program; and $11.25 million expansion of the Household Resilience Program in areas devasted by cyclones.
“These infrastructure commitments are statewide and will help regional Queensland,” the Premier said.
“Now we must stay united, with a clear plan for this next phase – the first stage of our carefully implemented approach, which will ensure we continue to protect our health while backing Queensland jobs.
The government will also direct financial support to tourism, manufacturing and international education sectors.
Will be destined $50 million for tourism infrastructure and more funding towards a domestic tourism campaign, while the same amount will be delivered to industries to continue to expand manufacturing capacity for PPE, hand sanitiser and medical supplies to respond to COVID-19.
Another $10 million will head to support international students and safeguard Queensland’s global education brand.
“We will make $100 million available to support small businesses including Small Business Adaption Grants of up to $10,000 to support businesses through the pandemic,” she said.
The package includes several initiatives to enable growth in the energy sector and in skilling for the future:
- $20 million for free online training which includes training in safety and hygiene standards to keep COVID-19 contained;
- A further $14.8 million to support project development of the CopperString 2.0 project that will connect the North West Minerals Province with the national electricity market; and
- $20 million towards construction of a Queensland Apprenticeships Centre in renewable hydrogen at Beenleigh.
“In recent weeks we have been listening to business and industry and the clear message is that Government investment needs to be directed at investment that will grow and diversify our economy into the future,” she said.
“This is an economic framework that will create jobs by focusing on what we are good at – and by making more products here in Queensland.
“Our number one priority is backing Queensland jobs and doing it in a way that ensures we protect the good work to date that has helped us keep people healthy during the COVID19.”