Budget 2022: Delivering for the Indian Ocean Territories

The ongoing sustainability of the Indian Ocean Territories (IOT) is continuing to be supported through the 2022 Federal Budget, with the Australian Government’s continued support of essential services and infrastructure on Christmas Island (CI) and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands (CKI).

Our Government understands the CI and CKI communities have particular needs due to the territories’ remote locations. We will continue working with the Western Australian Government for the ongoing delivery of services and community programs to the IOT.

We are also supporting the continuing delivery of community services through the Indian Ocean Territories Administration, including health, energy, and property and infrastructure services.

The Federal Budget follows a range of recent commitments to the IOT’s future development and sustainability including the establishment of the IOT marine parks and eligibility for grants and funding under a range of Northern Australia initiatives.

As announced last week, the Government is establishing two new marine parks at CI and CKI in the Indian Ocean, supported by an initial $5.4 million through the Oceans Leadership Package to manage the marine parks. The package includes $2.2 million for a grants program to support projects specific to the CI and  CKI marine environments, with the other funding to be used for management activities that will enhance the protection and understanding of the region. Applications for the $2.2 million Indian Ocean Territories Marine Parks Grants program are now open. For more information and to apply, visit the Community Grants Hub.

Infrastructure projects in CI and CKI are now eligible to apply for concessional loans and other financing support from the Federal Government’s $5 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure

Facility (NAIF). For more information on the NAIF and other investments in northern Australia, visitwww.infrastructure.gov.au/territories-regions-cities/regions/northern-australia.

Further, the Government is opening up new opportunities through the Northern Australia Development Program grants, supporting business expansion, diversification and potential new industry investment across the region, including the IOT.

The Government is also investing in long-term sustainability and economic development in the IOT through previously announced funding for a water security assessment, development of a local waste management strategy and the niche agriculture grants program.

With the delivery of the 2022 Budget, our Government’s focus is firmly on the future of the IOT as we learn to adapt and live with COVID-19, through ongoing investment in CI and CKI’s infrastructure, services and community. For full details on the 2022 Federal Budget, visit www.infrastructure.gov.au.