Thursday, 13 February 2020
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Deputy Prime Minister, the . Will the Deputy Prime Minister outline to the House the importance of the Morrison government's consistent belief and policy approach to driving development in regional Australia? And is the Deputy Prime Minister aware of the consequences of alternative approaches?
I thank the member for Flynn for his question. He understands, coming from the wonderful port city of Gladstone, that industrial city, just how important our resources sector is. And he understands that coal provides $62 billion worth of exports. He understands that it provides two-thirds of Australia's energy supplies. He understands that it provides 55,000 jobs. He understands the importance of the $4 million Collinsville feasibility study for that HELE plant.
Gladstone has the NRG Gladstone Power Station, Queensland Alumina, Cement Australia, Orica Yarwun global chemical plant, Northern Oil Refinery—a wonderful business—Curtis Island gas export facilities and pipelines. They're providing a lot of jobs and hope and optimism and opportunity.
Last night the well-informed Peter van Onselen had a report about a rebel group. When I heard this I was very interested to see where this rebel group was coming from. Initially I thought it might have been the Greens. I thought the member for Melbourne, the former ALP branch member at Subiaco, may have had his come-to-Damascus moment—that he's seen the light shine in, knowing where the light came from. But then I realised that in fact it was the Otis group. Peter van Onselen belled the cat about this rebel group. Imagine that—a rebel group within parliament!
Opposition members interjecting—
You are just trying to steal my thunder! The Otis menu is very, very interesting reading. On the menu is ravioli egg yolk. No doubt the leader of that group, the member for Hunter, had that when he went there for dinner, because today he's got egg all over his face! It's very interesting to read—
The Deputy Prime Minister will resume his seat.
Mr Conroy interjecting—
The member for Shortland's missing the moment yet again. I'm going to disappoint the Deputy Prime Minister. The question referred to alternative approaches. It's policy based. I can't see how reading out the menu, as interesting as it is, is relevant to the question.
It didn't for the member for Maribyrnong. I'm not quite sure that was on the menu. Take the $100 million Gladstone port access road extension. We're building the infrastructure that Gladstone needs and that people need right across the member for Flynn's wonderful Central Queensland electorate. We're providing the infrastructure as part of our $100 billion infrastructure rollout, our decade-long plan. It's important; it's creating jobs; and it's creating hope for the people of Flynn—and the member for Flynn knows it. He knows how important our resources sector is. It's a shame that those opposite don't ever change the international cheese selection, just like their ever-changing policy position on coal.