$223 million to unlock hundreds of infrastructure jobs

The Morrison and McGowan Governments will support construction jobs across Western Australia by jointly investing an additional $223 million to deliver shovel-ready infrastructure projects and urgent road safety upgrades.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said further investment in infrastructure would play a critical role in the Commonwealth’s JobMaker plan and help the West Australian economy as it recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Partnering with state and territory governments to invest in more major infrastructure projects across Australia is a key part of our JobMaker plan to rebuild our economy and create more jobs,” the Prime Minister said.

“This funding injection means we have brought forward or provided additional funding in excess of $1 billion Western Australian in the past eight months.

“This package builds on the fast tracking of $868 million for infrastructure in Western Australia which we announced last November, locking in priority upgrades that will bust congestion, improve safety and boost jobs at a time we need it most.”

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said the Australian Government’s $176 million contribution builds on its nationwide $100 billion, 10-year infrastructure pipeline.

“Federal funding for this package has been drawn from the recently announced $1.5 billion allocation to priority shovel-ready projects and targeted road safety works.

“We are continuing to work closely with all levels of Government making decisions to create jobs and support our economic recovery,” Senator Cormann said.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the Government had worked closely with State, Territory and Local Governments to identify shovel-ready projects to help reinvigorate the economy and get money flowing into jobs and businesses as soon as possible.

“In Western Australia, this will see us investing in critical shovel-ready projects along the Great Eastern and Bussell Highways, Exmouth Road and Toodyay Road while simultaneously delivering a dedicated road safety package for life-saving improvements right across regional WA,” Mr McCormack said.

“Overall this package is estimated to support more than 1,000 jobs during construction, which is absolutely fantastic news for locals and communities across the state.

“By investing in critical infrastructure projects across the country, we are doing more than just supporting local jobs and businesses at this critical time. We are investing in our future beyond COVID-19 by delivering lasting infrastructure which will kick-start our economic recovery and benefit Australians for years to come.”

Western Australia Premier Mark McGowan said the Regional State Road Safety Improvement Program would see the two Governments invest $100 million across the state to deliver improvements over the next year.

“The Road Safety Improvement Program will widen, seal or install audio-tactile line markings on more than 20 regional routes right across the state to reduce run-off-road crashes,” he said.

“These works will improve road safety, saving lives and bolstering the resilience of the state’s road networks, which is absolutely critical for our regional roads.

“The package will immediately help support economic activity and WA jobs, and is another sign of the State and Commonwealth Governments working collaboratively in the interests of Western Australians.”

Senator Cormann further said that bringing forward these key infrastructure projects is part of $13.8 billion in infrastructure funding for Western Australia that the Federal Government has committed to transport infrastructure projects to date.

“The Federal Government is committed to projects that get West Australians home sooner and safer. But particularly as we look to grow the West Australian economy on the other side of the COVID-19 crisis, we want to guarantee work for local trades and keep money flowing through local businesses throughout the construction phase and beyond,” Senator Cormann said.

Federal Minister for Population, Cities and Urban Infrastructure Alan Tudge said the funding injection would also deliver shovel-ready fixes to Thomas Road.

“For Perth motorists that includes creating dual lanes for an extra kilometre between the Kwinana Freeway and Nicholson Road and a much-needed intersection upgrade,” Mr Tudge said.

“Thomas Road is used by around 19,000 vehicles every single day and this funding means shovels will be in the ground sooner to support local jobs and the economy.”

Western Australian Minister for Transport Rita Saffioti said the funding injection would support local jobs, businesses and the economy while providing lasting infrastructure to help the state bounce back as COVID-19 restrictions ease.

“This funding injection will help us start work on even more critical regional road infrastructure including the dualling of Bussell Highway, upgrades to key tourism roads in Exmouth and key freight roads through Toodyay.

“These projects will support our local regional economies, creating and supporting local jobs whilst also improving safety.”

The jointly funded package is supported by investments from the Commonwealth ($176 million) and WA Government ($47 million).

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Media contacts:

Prime Minister’s office: Press Office, (02) 6277 7700

Deputy Prime Minister’s office: Hannah Maguire, 0429 920 254

Premier’s office: Lannie Le-Patterson, 0419 698 504

Minister Cormann’s office: Karen Wu, 0428 350 139

Minister Tudge’s office: Michael Bennett, 0434 782 923

Minister Saffioti’s office: Caitlin Goddard, 0437 234 249