Federal and State Budgets can build resilience
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Against the backdrop of the ongoing global pandemic, leaders of business and industry in the Cairns region have developed an integrated series of initiatives to drive renewal, resilience and greater diversity in the far north’s economy.
This year’s Federal and State Budgets will be pivotal in bringing to life central elements of this Forging a Brighter Future plan.
With COVID-19 ramifications continuing for key sectors such as tourism and hospitality, the integrated plan in this document provides opportunity for renewal.
Opportunity for the Federal and State Governments to build on their already significant support by providing further backing for catalytic infrastructure and policy reform.
And opportunity for the private sector to invest heavily off the back of this government support, in both existing and emerging industries.
Central to this plan is creating jobs — in traditional and advanced manufacturing, health and allied industries, groundbreaking research, education, primary production and processing and civil construction.
Defence is as a centrepiece, given heightening geopolitical tensions in the south-west Pacific region, and the fact that Cairns is home to Queensland’s only Navy base.
A brighter future will be forged for Cairns TNQ with Budget support for the following:
• Building sovereign Defence capability through a new $300-$400m common user facility at the Cairns port
• Addressing health concerns by fully funding necessary infrastructure to bring to life the Cairns University Hospital
• $40m investment in rebuilding international tourism markets
• Ensuring urban water security and opportunity for agricultural growth through $250m+ investment
• Further upgrading capacity and connectivity of the region’s key roads, as well as a strategic recommendation to extend the National Highway A1 from Cairns’ northern suburbs to the Atherton Tablelands
We acknowledge the considerable investment by the Federal and State Governments in the far north during the COVID pandemic.
With international borders reopening, business and industry leaders are absolutely confident the long-term future for Cairns TNQ is bright – and we look forward to government providing much- needed, immediate impetus through investments outlined in this plan.