Michael Ferguson,Minister for Infrastructure and Transport
The Tasmanian Liberal Government is delivering an aggressive infrastructure program to get even more projects underway in the next six to 12 months.
This is designed to immediately stimulate the economy, boost private investment, and give Tasmanian businesses and workers certainty right now.
What Labor is choosing to ignore is that this is on top of projects that are already underway or already brought forward, such as the $40 million shiploader at Burnie Port, which is the most pressing infrastructure need at the port and is fully funded and brought forward by the Australian Government.
It’s not helping anyone that Labor keeps calling for investment in the port when that is what we are doing – if Labor were paying attention, they’d know that under the Port Master Plan, TasPorts will invest $80 million at the Port of Burnie to deliver a significant increase in capacity at Tasmania’s primary container port. TasPorts is currently investigating opportunities to increase port capacity and improve productivity of the supply chain for bulk minerals, concentrates, forestry and international general cargo.
Key projects that have already been completed at the Port of Burnie under the Master Plan to date include significant capital dredging to support the arrival of Toll’s new start-of-the-art vessels. Further dredging work is scheduled over the coming year to enable access for larger vessels carrying forestry products.
The $12 million in additional funding for the Coastal Pathway project means $12 million for even more engineering and civil contracting jobs in the region. This is more than just fast-tracking a project, as Labor dishonestly says. It is a rescue package of entirely new funds to support the Waratah-Wynyard and Burnie Councils on this local project, which has suffered due to recent coastal erosion and identified future erosion risk.
The Government has already funded both the redevelopment of Cradle Mountain – with $86.8 million of State and Federal funding locked in – and Tasmania’s next iconic multi-day, multi-hut walking experience, with $20 million committed and the site currently subject to detailed feasibility and planning.
Our construction blitz over the next two years will support around 15,000 jobs, and is vital as we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
We will continue to focus on supporting local jobs and businesses right across the state, including in the North-West, while Labor is focused on sniping from the sidelines.
Labor can throw as many stones as they want but they can’t change history. Not only are we planning to build more than Labor could ever have dreamt of in their 16 years in Government, we are actually delivering it.