Wednesday, 12 May 2021
Questions without Notice
My question is to the Minister representing the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Senator Reynolds. Can the minister outline to the Senate the Morrison-McCormack government's record $110 billion infrastructure rollout announced in this 2021-22 budget and how it will secure Australia's recovery?
I thank Senator O'Sullivan for the question and for his passionate support for the development of infrastructure right across our great state of Western Australia and, indeed, nationally. Despite what those opposite say, the Morrison-McCormack government is continuing to secure Australia's recovery with a record investment in infrastructure as part of the 2021-22 budget. This is continuing to support and secure jobs. It is driving growth and helping rebuild Australia's economy from COVID-19, which is still far from over. So not only does the $110 billion 10-year infrastructure pipeline form part of the recovery plan; it is helping secure Australia's world-leading economic recovery. This record investment in infrastructure is delivering, actually delivering, nation-building infrastructure projects and water security to inland Australia. It's not only meeting our national freight challenge but also getting Australians home sooner and safer.
This investment builds on the significant projects that the Morrison government has already delivered for Australia. Let me remind all in this chamber of some of those projects that have been delivered: the Pacific Highway to Ballina extension, $3.7 billion; the Ballarat light rail upgrade in Victoria, half a billion dollars; the North-South Corridor Darlington upgrade in South Australia, over $200 million; the Bruce Highway and Mackay Ring Road in Queensland, approximately $400 million; and, a bit closer to our home, Senator O'Sullivan, the Great Northern Highway, the Muchea to Wubin upgrade in Western Australia, $275 million. This $110 billion rollout—I will say it again; this $110 billion rollout—includes an additional $15.2 billion in new commitments. So, far from a cut, it is additional spending.
Indeed I can, and very proudly so. This government has a very proud record of delivering major infrastructure projects right across our nation. In fact, more than 220 projects are currently under construction right around our great nation. These projects are supporting over 100,000 Australian jobs. The $15.2 billion in new commitments to infrastructure projects will support an additional 30,000 jobs across Australia, which has never been more important. This budget is funding projects including: $2 billion for the Great Western Highway upgrade—Katoomba to Lithgow—in New South Wales; $2 billion to deliver the Melbourne Intermodal Terminal; $400 million additional funding for the Bruce Highway in Queensland; $237.5 million for Metronet in Western Australia; and $161 million for the Truro bypass in South Australia.
Indeed, I can. I still had such a long list of projects that this government is delivering, I didn't get through them all. This infrastructure rollout above all else means local jobs in local communities right across Australia. For example, the new Intermodal Freight Terminal in Melbourne will support both the Victorian and, importantly, our national freight networks, creating up to 1,350 jobs during peak construction and a further 550 jobs during peak operation.
The additional $1 billion for the highly successful $2.5 billion Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program is also successfully delivering local projects that matter to local communities right across our nation. That again means local jobs, not just direct construction jobs but jobs that flow right through local communities. This funding is also supporting around 3½ thousand jobs, taking the total jobs supported by this program to 9,000. This is what good government looks like. (Time expired)