ECONOMIC GROWTH IN MELBOURNE’S NORTH – THE IMPORTANCE OF RDA’S

Statement

ECONOMIC GROWTH IN MELBOURNE’S NORTH – THE IMPORTANCE OF RDA’S

The northern regions of Melbourne are facing some significant economic challenges, in particular around unemployment, underemployment and business growth.

And Deputy Speaker, the departure of our nation’s car industry has brought these issues into sharp relief.

One of the groups working constructively on these issues is the Northern Melbourne RDA, Regional Development Australia. Northern Melbourne RDA is one of 55 committees funded by the Regional Development Australia programme to bring together local leaders, businesses, stakeholders, state, local and federal governments to support economic development in their regions.

I have always been deeply impressed by the work undertaken by Northern Melbourne RDA with initiatives like ‘Northern Horizons’ which identified local infrastructure priorities and the ‘Melbourne’s North Food and Beverage Growth Plan’ aimed at creating 10,000 new jobs over the next ten years.

Earlier this year the Government initiated a review into Regional Development Australia.

The terms of reference include a consideration of the number of RDAs and their boundaries including processes to alter them, and whether capital cities and external territories should even be included.

It is important that RDA’s are retained in our capital cities as well as in rural areas. As our urban populations grow the strategic location of jobs and the creation of jobs become more and more important and our RDA’s a crucial part of achieving those important goals.

If the Government really wants to see jobs and growth in rural and urban regions then we need to continue our support for the RDA and the work they do in our capital cities.

21 NOVEMBER 2016.

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