Regions 2030: Unlocking Opportunity in Regional Australia

Media Release

FN071/2017

17 May 2017

  • The Regions 2030: Unlocking Opportunity regional policy statement released.
  • Publication sets out the Government's agenda for regional Australia towards 2030—working to make regional Australia an even better place to live, work and invest.
  • The Regions 2030 agenda encompasses the five key focus areas of Jobs and Economic Development; Infrastructure; Health; Education; and Communications.
  • Regional Australia is a key driver of the Australian economy.

Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash has launched the Coalition Government's vision statement for rural, regional and remote Australia: Regions 2030: Unlocking Opportunity in Broken Hill today.

The Regions 2030 statement outlines the government's vision for regional Australia and the key initiatives helping to achieve that vision.

“Regional development is about having a vision for what we want regional communities to look like in 20 years. It's about making sure we create both careers and jobs in our communities so our children and grandchildren can lead fulfilling lives. It's about developing ways our young people can receive an excellent education without leaving the community they grew up in.

“It's about building the kinds of communities our children and grandchildren either want to stay in or come back to.

“Regional development is about much more than just grants programs.

“It's also about lifting the profile of regional Australia and creating awareness of the fact every Australian owes their lifestyle to regional Australia.

“Regional Australia provides the water city people drink, the milk on their breakfast, the meat and vegetables for dinner, the gas to cook dinner and heat water, and the electricity which powers their households.

“Investing in our regions is essential for Australia—strong regions mean a strong nation.

“A ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach to developing regional policy does not work. Regions 2030 focuses on working with communities to meet their economic and social needs, which will help to improve life for rural, regional and remote Australians.”

This commitment is being delivered through investment and activity across five focus areas across Government:

  • Jobs and economic development;
  • Infrastructure;
  • Health;
  • Education; and
  • Communications.

Regions 2030 and the Regional Australia Ministerial Taskforce, chaired by the Prime Minister, will continue to consider policies which take advantage of the opportunities available and tackle the challenges facing regional Australia,” Minister Nash said.

Minister Nash said the announcement follows the release of the 2017–18 Federal Budget last week reinforcing the Coalition Government's commitment to unlock the potential of Australia's regions, including measures such as:

  • An additional $8.4 billion in new equity funding to construct Inland Rail.
  • An extra $200 million for the Building Better Regions Fund, bringing the total amount in the fund to almost $500 million.
  • $272 million to provide grants of $10 million or more for major projects to unlock the potential of regions, helping take advantage of new opportunities and potentially spur new industries.
  • Lower taxes for small business.
  • The structured decentralisation of Australian Government jobs from Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra.
  • Increased access for rural and remote Australians to psychological services via telehealth.
  • Expanding community-owned university training hubs, which will allow students to study any university course in Australia from the region they grew up in.

The Coalition Government continues to think years ahead as it plans for regional Australia through initiatives including:

  • Expanding community-owned university training hubs, which will allow students to study any university course in Australia from the region they grew up in.
  • the Review of Medical Training in Australia, which will assess the number and distribution of medical places and medical schools in Australia as we aim to get more medical professionals to the regions.
  • The Independent Review into Regional, Remote and Rural Education.
  • Our process to assess which Australian Government departments, agencies and their parts could be suitable for decentralisation, to create local jobs and career paths and stimulate of economic growth in Australia's regions.

To view a copy of Regions 2030: Unlocking Opportunity, visit regional.gov.au/regions2030