LEICHHARDT MP Warren Entsch has welcomed the Coalition’s policy paper on Northern Australia, describing it as “a focus I haven’t seen in my lifetime”.
Touring Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park with Opposition Leader Tony Abbott on Saturday, Mr Entsch said that despite the bulk of the wealth being generated in northern Australia, 80 per cent of the population live in 20 per cent of the land mass.
“What we’re looking at is how to enhance opportunities for people to start to move up here,” Mr Entsch said.
“This will encourage us to start some very significant infrastructure projects, looking at how we are going to transport people and create new enterprises, and it’s going to be very exciting for people who are looking at potentially investing.
“That’s what this is all about: daring to dream to build our own economic opportunities.”
Mr Entsch said there was already a body of information available through various studies such as the Australian Land and Water Taskforce, which he was involved in.
“What Tony Abbott is talking about is facilitating or enabling if you like; looking at the billions of dollars tied up in superannuation funds, creating opportunities for investment in farming, agriculture, tourism and infrastructure projects such as the Tropical Campus of the AIS.
“There’s still a lot of meat to be put on the bone but what we do now is set an agenda, we look for people with vision, private sector dollars to invest and then provide them with the regulatory structure to encourage them to do it.”