Parliamentary Secretary for the Illawarra and South Coast Gareth Ward MP has today welcomed the 20-year vision for a thriving regional NSW which sets out a framework for investment that will guide the allocation of resources from the new $4.2 billion Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund.
Mr Ward said that the regional vision will promote sustainable, long-term economic growth that will focus on job creation and economic development in the Illawarra and South Coast.
“This is a plan that identifies our industry sectors set for growth, and identifies the role of Government in facilitating that growth across our region,” he said.
“What’s so important about this vision is that the NSW Government has the financial backing to deliver it, with every cent of the $4.2 billion Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund being spent in regional NSW,” Mr Ward said.
NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro MP said that the vision outlines 10 key ‘engine industries’ that will drive growth in regional NSW, and sets out a framework for how the government should direct its investment.
“Businesses tell us the key to them investing in our regions is certainty – and that’s exactly what our vision provides,” Mr Barilaro said.
“This vision sets out a long-term plan and a framework for how the government will lay the all-important foundations for businesses to invest in our regions with confidence.
“People know we are a government that’s worked hard to put ourselves in a strong financial position, and now they want to see we are spending our funds with fore-thought, by making smart investments in big-ticket items that have the potential to transform regional NSW,” he said.
Mr Barilaro said importantly the vision brings together the NSW Government’s long-term planning strategies, including the Future Transport Strategy 2056, the NSW State Infrastructure Strategy and the regional plans.
“Through targeted government efforts we have the potential to attract an extra 185,000 new residents to live and work in regional NSW, on top of population growth already predicted, by 2038,” Mr Barilaro said.