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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    $5B Northern Australia fund – legislate in Canberra, locate in Queensland

    Premier and Minister for the Arts
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Saturday, February 20, 2016

    $5B Northern Australia fund – legislate in Canberra, locate in Queensland

    ROCKHAMPTON: The Australian Government should fast-track legislation for its $5 billion Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility and established its head office in Brisbane, Premier of Queensland Annastacia Palaszczuk said today.

    The Premier said without legislation, the $5 billion in financing for projects in northern Australia could not be accessed.

    “The funds were announced in the Federal Budget in May last year, but without legislation the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility is frozen,” she said.

    “The appointment of Rockhampton-based Senator Matt Canavan as the junior Minister for Northern Australia is a positive step.”

    “The next positive step would be to have a Brisbane headquarters for NAIF and a presence in regional Queensland.  Brisbane is a key financial centre and it’s much closer to the action and potential of northern Australia.  It would be disappointing if NAIF was Sydney-centric.”

    Treasurer Curtis Pitt has reaffirmed the Queensland Government’s support for the NAIF to support the development of important economic infrastructure as a catalyst for increased social and economic development in northern Queensland.

    Mr Pitt has campaigned for a Queensland presence for NAIF, particularly to improve communication with the Queensland Government and with NAIF applicants to develop projects within Queensland.

    Ms Palaszczuk said the Queensland Government had a $10.1 billion capital works program for 2015-16 and it would support 27,000 full-time equivalent jobs.

    “We are working closely with the private sector to promote economic and employment growth,” she said.

    “Over the last 12 months, more than 70,000 jobs have been created in Queensland.”

    “As Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull recently said – ‘business confidence is highest in Queensland’.”

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