The Australian Government will provide an additional $160 million to seal and widen priority sections of the iconic Outback Way, taking its total funding to the route to $330 million.
Acting Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Michael McCormack, said the additional investment builds upon a longstanding commitment to progressively upgrade the route, which links Laverton in Western Australia with Winton in Queensland via Alice Springs and the Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park in the Northern Territory.
“A better Outback Way means better links between Queensland, the Northern Territory and Western Australia, improved travel times and operating costs, better flood immunity, improved access to remote communities and mining operations, and a safer road,” Mr McCormack said.
Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, Matt Canavan, said upgrading priority sections of the route would tackle reliability and safety issues, especially for heavy freight vehicles, while delivering jobs for local communities.
“This investment is about supporting vital industries such as mining, tourism and agriculture across the north, and the communities these industries help sustain,” Mr Canavan said.
“The government will continue to work with the three northern jurisdictions to identify sections of highest priority for upgrades. The Australian Government is committed to creating new jobs and new investment across Northern Australia.”
Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister, Keith Pitt, said the government was committed to investing in the north in order to increase freight efficiency, improve road safety, reduce business costs and ensure businesses were able to get their goods to market quickly and reliably.
“The government’s ongoing infrastructure investment in projects such as the Outback Way are just one plank of a broader strategy covering priorities such as water policy, supporting Indigenous employment and driving economic innovation.”