Ministers for the Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities The Hon Michael McCormack MP Deputy Prime MinisterMinister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie Minister for Regional ServicesMinister for SportMinister for Local Government and Decentralisation The Hon Alan Tudge MP Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population The Hon Sussan Ley MP Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories The Hon Andrew Broad MP Former Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Scott Buchholz MP Assistant Minister for Roads and Transport The Hon Barnaby Joyce MPFormer Deputy Prime MinisterFormer Minister for Infrastructure and Transport The Hon Dr John McVeigh MPFormer Minister for Regional Development, Territories and Local Government The Hon Keith Pitt MPFormer Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister The Hon Damian Drum MPFormer Assistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister Senator the Hon Fiona Nash Former Minister for Regional DevelopmentFormer Minister for Local Government and Territories The Hon Darren Chester MP Former Minister for Infrastructure and TransportFormer A/g Minister for Regional DevelopmentFormer A/g Minister for Local Government and Territories The Hon Warren Truss MP Former Deputy Prime Minister Former Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development The Hon Paul Fletcher MP Former Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities The Hon Jamie Briggs MP Former Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development

Update on Australian Government's initiatives

Community update

SLCU006/2018

11 December 2018

During my visit to Christmas Island in October, I had the opportunity to discuss a number of initiatives being implemented by the Australian Government. At that time, I committed to provide you with regular updates on their progress.

Resort with Casino License

Thank you to those who participated in the recent consultations about the proposed re-issuing of a casino license on Christmas Island. I will shortly be releasing a Community Consultation Report which provides a summary of the outcomes of those discussions. I understand that, while many people are supportive of a casino as a means to encouraging economic development and employment, there are also concerns about the possible negative impacts on the community. All of these views are important and require careful consideration. In early 2019 the Australian Government will consider the proposal for a resort, with a casino licence. I anticipate this will occur by late February, and I will provide another update after that consideration.

Strategic Plans

The Government is funding the development of Strategic Plans for Christmas Island and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands. I am delighted the Christmas Island Strategic Plan will be launched very soon (in mid-December). A lot of hard work has gone into this Plan, and I anticipate a Government response will be provided by mid-February, 2019. The Administrator tells me community consultations on the Cocos (Keeling) Islands Strategic Plan have already commenced. I wish you well with this work. The Plans provide a community-led pathway to the future.

Release of Crown Land on Christmas Island

The Department is working closely with the Western Australian Government to prepare Crown land for release. This work includes meeting the requirements under the Land Administration Act 1997 (WA), and getting the sites valued. I expect to announce arrangements to market the sites by April 2019, with advice on successful purchasers and possible lessees towards the middle of the year.

Investment Support

The Government’s Regional Development Australia program is funding a Regional Investment Officer to identify potential investment opportunities and match those opportunities with investors. Mr Madi Signa has commenced in this role and has just spent two weeks on the Cocos (Keeling) Islands meeting the Shire and business leaders, and gaining an understanding of the investment potential of the area. I had the pleasure of meeting Madi recently - this is an important piece of work and I look forward to the opportunities it can deliver.

The Hon Sussan Ley MP
Assistant Minister for Regional Development and Territories