Skip links and keyboard navigation

    Media Statements

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

    National Governors' Association conference in Washington DC

    Premier and Minister for Trade
    The Honourable Annastacia Palaszczuk

    Friday, February 23, 2018

    National Governors' Association conference in Washington DC

    There have been few more constant and willing partners in the transformation of Queensland into a modern, dynamic and prosperous State than the United States.

    Their investment of ideas, technology and capital, alongside Queensland ingenuity and endeavour, has spurred the development or expansion of key sectors in our economy - minerals and LNG, agriculture, tourism, biotechnology and more recently biofuels with US Navy and large-scale renewable energy. 

    This partnership across the Pacific was forged before the ravages of World War II stretched out to Queensland, but the injection of thousands of US personnel to Australia’s defence was pivotal to Queensland’s protection.  Indeed, we gather in Washington DC this week, as we approach the 90th anniversary of Queensland aviator Sir Charles Kingsford Smith piloted the Southern Cross to complete the first trans-Pacific crossing from Oakland to his home town of Brisbane. Then President Calvin Coolidge offered his congratulations to Kingsford Smith for his “brilliant and courageous pioneering has ... strengthened the bonds between your Commonwealth and our country”.

    In Washington DC, I will join Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and other Premiers at the annual meeting of the Governors from the 50 States in an historic to further strengthen those bonds Coolidge identified.

    Queensland already has developed strong and formal agreements with Texas and South Carolina.  In Washington DC, its my intention to strengthen the partnership I initiated with Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval in 2016 to a Sister State partnership, recognising our common interests in energy, water management and mining technologies. 

    By “uniting States” across the Pacific, like Queensland and Nevada, we give our government agencies, universities, businesses and people the opportunity to work and prosper together.

    The role and decisions of States and major cities in the US are becoming increasingly important to work within as they are not necessarily influenced by national election cycles and dramatic shifts in policy from Pennsylvania Avenue.

    As Premier of Queensland and its Trade Minister, I will be taking the opportunity to meet with key investors, leading CEOs from US corporations and Australian companies, key Governors and film studios to attract more blockbusters, like Thor and Aquaman, for Queensland to generate more jobs, encourage more exports and attract more investment.

    Already meetings with key international investors like BlackRock, the world’s largest investment manager with more than US$5 trillion in assets under management, that Queensland is an attractive investment destination.  Indeed BlackRock have recently has bought a 90% stake in a 200MW solar farm at Collinsville in North Queensland.  Large-scale renewables is an industry that our Government is driving with more than $20 billion in an investment pipeline and the promise of 15,000 construction jobs. 

    I will be selling the Queensland story as a State of opportunity and a reliable partner and friend whether as government to government, university to university, business to business or American to Queenslander.

    The Queensland story is a good one - we account for one in every four export dollars earnt by Australia, that boasts the fastest employment growth of any State, and that has embraced the digital age to remove barriers to commerce and communication, making it the ideal place to invest, work and visit.