The Queensland Government has announced a $13.9 billion infrastructure investment for 2020-21, as part of its plan to accelerate the state’s economic recovery from the COVID pandemic.
Queensland Treasurer and Minister for Infrastructure and Planning, Cameron Dick, said 2020’s Capital Program re-affirmed the Government’s infrastructure guarantee, and was expected to directly support around 44,000 jobs.
“The Capital Program 2020 Update includes $13.9 billion in infrastructure spending across the state and is aimed at keeping people in jobs, driving our recovery and securing Queensland’s longer-term prosperity,” Mr Dick said.
“Our Unite and Recover for Queensland Jobs strategy for economic recovery has a strong focus on infrastructure, because we know that infrastructure will drive our state’s recovery, future prosperity and resilience.
“This capital program update reinforces our commitment to a $51.8 billion program of work over four years and gives the private sector confidence to invest in Queensland.
“In addition to creating and protecting jobs within the construction industry and supply chains, this investment will support our industries, regions and communities and be an incentive for further private investment.
“The Capital Program 2020 Update confirms our pipeline of capital projects that will support jobs for tradies, subcontractors and businesses now and into the future.”
Mr Dick said the Capital Program update details the State Government’s investment in almost 900 initiatives across transport, energy, water, health, education and training, digital, justice and public safety, social housing, the arts, culture, sport and recreation.
“The update provides visibility of this year’s spend and the anticipated 18-month projected spend to December 2021 for each of these infrastructure classes,” Mr Dick said.
“It shows we’re continuing to invest in traditional sectors by delivering economy boosting projects such as new and upgraded roads, vital high-quality health, education and social services, and also reflects our commitment to new technologies and priority sectors.
“This year, around 60 per cent of the total $13.9 billion investment will be spent outside of Greater Brisbane.
“These projects will help diversify and support our economic growth, enhance livability within our communities and provide jobs in our regions and the metropolitan area.”
Some of the highlights within the capital program include:
- $6.1 billion in transport infrastructure projects across Queensland, including the Ports of Gladstone and Townsville, Cross River Rail, Bruce Highway, Pacific and Ipswich motorways and a wide range of regional roads
- Health facility investments such as the $70 million redevelopment of Cairns Hospital mental health facilities
- Over $16 million for new ambulance stations at Ormeau, Yarrabilba, Munruben and Urraween
- A new QCN Fibre partnership with Toowoomba’s Pulse Data Centre to provide better internet for thousands of Darling Downs businesses
- $20 million towards the new Queensland Apprenticeships Centre at Beenleigh delivering training for high demand industries including renewable hydrogen
- $3.4 million towards collaborative projects with Balonne, Bulloo, Maranoa, Murweh and Paroo councils to enhance digital connectivity, and
- Investment in public safety such as $16.9 million for Queensland Fire and Emergency Services’ regional headquarters at Charlton, near Toowoomba, and the $52.2 million Wacol Counter-Terrorism and Community Training Centre, as well as new and upgraded fire and police stations around the state
Mr Dick said the capital program built upon the State Government’s support for the building and property development industries through stimulus measures and initiatives including the:
- $51.8 billion Infrastructure Guarantee
- $200 million Building Acceleration Fund
- $50 million SEQ community stimulus program
- $400 million Accelerated Works Program
- $200 million Works for Queensland COVID-19 Recovery Package
- $100 million Housing Construction – Works for Tradies, and
- reducing red tape and streamlining planning approvals for construction
“This Government is focused on getting our state’s economy back on its feet and building a stronger and more resilient economy,” Mr Dick said.
“Working in partnership with the private sector to invest and build vital infrastructure strengthening industries, supporting jobs and enabling future growth is vital to achieving our goals.”
Infrastructure Association of Queensland (IAQ) Chief Executive Officer, Priscilla Radice, welcomed the release of the Government’s Capital Program 2020 Update.
“In our recent 2020 IAQ survey, having a clear pipeline of work was identified by our members as the most pressing issue,” Ms Radice said.
“The infrastructure update gives industry visibility of the government’s continuing significant investment which is exactly what is needed to build confidence, help with workforce planning and grow the economy.
“We know that for every $1 the Government spends on infrastructure the private sector spends $13, creating jobs now and long-term economic benefits into the future.”
Master Builders Deputy CEO, Paul Bidwell, says this is a strong increase of $1 billion on 2019’s commitment.
“Given the current circumstances, it was vital spending be increased and we are pleased the Queensland Government has delivered on that front.”
View the Capital Program 2020 Update here.