The first North Queensland Regional Plan has now been finalised and will guide job creation and growth in the region over the next 25 years.
Planning Minister Cameron Dick said the plan, supported by the region’s five Mayors, would create more jobs in more industries.
“North Queensland is in the midst of an exciting period of change and growth and the regional plan will ensure the region continues to grow in a sustainable way,” Mr Dick said.
“Traditional industry sectors such as agriculture, defence and resources are thriving and innovative industries like advanced manufacturing and renewable energy are emerging.
“The demographics of the region are also changing and by 2041 more than 90,000 additional people are expected to be living in the area, requiring 35,000 new jobs.
“The regional plan provides the blueprint for ensuring the region grows in a sustainable way, by supporting a dynamic economy, creating jobs, boosting investment, protecting our natural environment and nurturing tourism and lifestyle opportunities.
“I want to thank the Mayors of Townsville, Burdekin, Charters Towers, Hinchinbrook and Palm Island for their constructive support and commitment, and the many key stakeholders and community members who contributed valuable feedback.”
Mr Dick said the plan identified significant industry development opportunities that will be key to future success of the region.
“We are delivering a long-term plan for the region that is backed by a strong economic focus,” he said.
“It is an exciting time to invest in North Queensland and we are shining a spotlight on the region’s great economic development and investment opportunities.
“Five initial priority areas have been identified including renewable hydrogen, defence, agribusiness, advanced manufacturing and tourism.
“These opportunities will build on existing work and shape new directions as we work together with councils and industry to enhance the region’s long-term economic prosperity and resilience.
“We are committed to the plan’s success and will monitor its performance over time through a number of implementation actions.”
Member for Mundingburra, Coralee O’Rourke, said the finalisation of the regional plan was an exciting step for the region.
“The plan’s shared vision for the next 25 years sets the way in which we can continue to build on everything this great region has to offer, while also managing growth efficiently, sensibly and sustainably,” Ms O’Rourke said.
“This really sets us up to be the economic powerhouse of Northern Australia.”
Mayor of Townsville, Jenny Hill, said the plan recognised Townsville’s strengths and would help create vital jobs for the area.
“As more people call Townsville home we need to ensure we have the relevant planning in place to maintain everything it is that people love about the area,” Cr Hill said.
“This plan supports new investment opportunities while creating economic prosperity for years to come.”