Treasurer explains assets sell-off

QUEENSLAND Treasurer Tim Nicholls spent the first day of many in the lead-up to next year's election outlining the government's position in relation to its proposed asset sales agenda.

Mr Nicholls announced this week the government will seek a mandate to sell or lease $33 billion worth of state assets.

He told the LNP faithful at a post budget lunch on Wednesday in Brisbane the government would not go about trying to sell its Strong Choices Investment Program which would enable his government to build more schools hospitals, roads and other vital infrastructure.

"We have now kicked off the second phase of our consultation with Queenslanders as we talk about the Strongest Choice and the Smartest Choice," he said.

"We are asking people to go to the Strong Choices website and have a look at what we are proposing in terms of being able in invest in the infrastructure that we know the state will need.

"Also, we want to know what your priorities are, whether they are local regional or state-wide level."

Mr Nicholls told the 500 people who attended the lunch he was absolutely convinced this was the right way forward for the state.

He said the program was the only way to reduce a $4 billion-a-year interest bill to $2.7 billion a year and reduce the state's debt by $25 billion.

"None of these proposals will be implemented until the government has taken this methodical and disciplined plan to the next state election," he said.

"Not everyone will agree with all the choices this government has made about how to pay for things into the future.

"But at least Queenslanders now know we will have funding certainty into the future, so we can invest in the things we need for a growing and ageing population."

Together Union state secretary Alex Scott claimed earlier in the day the government would slash "thousands" more jobs across a range of sectors if it won the election next year.

Mr Nicholls refuted the claims saying Mr Scott only believed the public service was an "ever expanding beast" where he could continue to sign up members from.


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