$10 million boost to help lower the cost of insurance in northern Queensland

Published Thursday, 11 November, 2021 at 09:08 AM

Deputy Premier, Minister for State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning and Minister Assisting the Premier on Olympics Infrastructure
The Honourable Dr Steven Miles

Communities in high risk, cyclone-prone coastal areas in North and Far North Queensland will benefit from a new funding program aimed at lowering the cost of insurance in the north.

Deputy Premier and Minister for the Queensland Reconstruction Authority (QRA) Steven Miles said the Palaszczuk government had made $10 million available to help eligible councils in northern Queensland reduce their disaster risk with the aim to lower the cost of insurance for local residents.

“I’m delighted to announce that expressions of interest in the North Queensland Natural Disasters Mitigation Program are now open,” Mr Miles said.

“The funding is available to 33 councils and Weipa Town Authority in high risk, cyclone-prone coastal areas with population centres within 50 kilometres of the coastline, from Bundaberg all the way up to the Northern Territory border.

“We know that Queensland is the most disaster-impacted state in Australia, with close to 90 natural disasters experienced over the past decade.

“We also know that communities in North and Far North Queensland often bear the brunt of these events, which has led to ever increasing insurance premiums.

“A recent Australian Consumer and Competition Commission report into the issue found that between 2007 and 2019, average premiums for home and contents insurance increased by 127 per cent in North Queensland, compared with 71 per cent for the rest of Australia.

“The funding is an opportunity to reduce the impacts of natural disasters in the north while also helping to make insurance more affordable.”

Mr Miles said the ACCC report found that disaster risk mitigation initiatives, both at the household and community level, could help lower the cost of insurance premiums.

“That’s why I’m encouraging all eligible councils to identify disaster risk mitigation activities that can be funded or partly funded through the program,” he said.

“Eligible projects can include initiatives to encourage locals to make their homes more cyclone or flood resilient, studies into a community’s disaster risk, new or upgraded drainage systems, storm water detention, levees and culverts, or the design of larger infrastructure or non-infrastructure projects to help reduce the impact of future natural disaster events.”

Eligible councils can apply for up to $2 million through the program, with expressions of interest closing on 18 February 2022.

The North Queensland Natural Disasters Mitigation Program is being delivered by the QRA. For more information, visit the website at www.qra.qld.gov.au/NQNDMP.


Media contact: Katharine Wright – 0428 957 903