Community members, stakeholders, Ministers and Members of Parliament will meet in seven regional centres on Monday (29 March) for the first round of Regional Community Forums for 2021.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said jobs and economic development opportunities would be discussed at the forums in Far North Queensland, North/North West Queensland, Mackay/Isaac/Whitsunday, Western Queensland, Central Queensland, Wide Bay/Burnett/Fraser Coast and Darling Downs/South West Queensland.
“Over the past 18 months, and through the coronavirus pandemic, our Regional Community Forums have helped identify key priority areas for regional Queensland,” the Premier said.
“My Government’s strategic priorities include a specific commitment to grow our regions, which is even more important now as our economy continues to recover and grow from COVID.
“That’s what makes our Regional Community Forums so important.
“The forums are for community members to put forward ideas for their region, and previous forums have already proved their worth with valuable results such as promoting “buy local” campaigns and developing agricultural traineeships specific to a region.
“I look forward to the actions, outcomes and opportunities which develop from this latest round of Regional Community Forums, contributing to our economic recovery from COVID-19.”
Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing Glenn Butcher said Round 5 of the Regional Community Forums would include site visits to research and processing facilities, popular tourism hotspots and iconic regional businesses.
“Just as they’re a platform for discussion and debate, these forums also allow us to showcase innovation and excellence in the regions,” Minister Butcher said.
“From Wilmar’s bioethanol plant in Sarina fuelling the renewable energy market, to the Mossman Gorge Visitors Centre championing unique cultural experiences in the Year of Indigenous Tourism, forum members will explore projects building and diversifying our regions.
“Guided by local input and promoting local skills and expertise, 2021 will be another productive year, as we work together to address equity, opportunity and sustainability across the state.”
Begun in 2019, the Regional Community Forums bring together regional stakeholders and government representatives to discuss local priorities and tailored solutions, to strengthen regional economies and services.
The Regional Community Forums are part of the Queensland Government’s Advancing Queensland’s Regions strategy, supported by the Office for Rural and Regional Queensland.