Thousands of Qld jobs coming in PM’s $72b recession buster

THOUSANDS of Queensland jobs will be created in a billion-dollar plan to build our way out of the COVID-19 recession.

The two-prong plan includes unleashing $1.5 billion for small road and rail projects that are ready to go now, as well as cutting approval time of 15 nation-building projects in half to get jobs under way within 12 months.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison will use the CEDA State of the Nation speech today to call on the COVID spirit of co-operation with the states to get shovels in the ground faster.

There will be 15 major projects, of the scope of the $10 billion Inland Rail, which will have their approval times slashed in half.

 

Prime Minister Scott Morrison will announce cash for road projects of fast tracking 15 major projects at the State of the Nation conference today. Picture: AAP Image/Lukas Coch
Prime Minister Scott Morrison will announce cash for road projects of fast tracking 15 major projects at the State of the Nation conference today. Picture: AAP Image/Lukas Coch

The projects are pre-existing, with planning already underway and are worth a combined $72 billion, but the full list will not be announced today.

Mr Morrison will say fast-tracking the projects is expected to create 66,000 direct and indirect jobs.

"Under our new approach this investment, and most importantly, these jobs will be brought to market earlier by targeting a 50 per cent reduction in Commonwealth assessment and approval times for major projects, from an average 3.5 years to 21 months," he will say.

The Inland Rail from Melbourne to Brisbane, Olympic Dam extension in South Australia and emergency town water projects in NSW will be fast-tracked under the scheme, with more Queensland projects expected to be announced in coming weeks.

The $1.5 billion for small priority road projects will be split into two parts, with $1 billion to go towards roads, roundabouts and overpasses ready to build now, and another $500 million to go towards road safety works.

Specific projects will have to be nominated by the states.

"We need to bring the same common sense co-operation we showed fighting COVID-19 to unlocking infrastructure investment in the recovery," Mr Morrison will say.

Opposition leader Anthony Albanese will also address the CEDA State of the Nation conference today, calling for a "reset" of the economy.

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese says it’s time for a reset and renewal of the economy. Picture: AAP Image/Lukas Coch
Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese says it’s time for a reset and renewal of the economy. Picture: AAP Image/Lukas Coch

It includes running through highlights from his previous "vision statements", including reaching net-zero emissions by 2050, developing the nation into a "clean energy superpower and overhauling the vocational education and training system.

"Let's not snap back to where we were before. We have a chance to chart a way towards a strong economy that works for people," he said.

"Then one day we can look back with pride at how it was together that we saw off this crisis and emerged from it stronger."

Originally published as Thousands of Qld jobs coming in PM's $72b recession buster


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