The Property Council of Australia (SA Division) has welcomed infrastructure investment announcements in the Federal Budget that will help resolve critical capacity constraints ahead of the State’s resources-driven boom.
The Rudd Government will invest more than $277 million in road and rail projects in South Australia including $86 million to expedite election commitments.
“This Budget begins the journey toward the investment in infrastructure that we urgently need to remove the constraints and bottlenecks threatening our gains from the mining boom,” said South Australian Division Executive Director Nathan Paine.
“Upgrades to interstate transport networks and critical freight corridors will greatly enhance our competitiveness as a state – if we aren’t competitive we can’t hope to emulate the prosperity seen in Western Australia.”
“This investment in infrastructure also reduces budgetary pressure on the State Government, giving it greater latitude to alleviate uncompetitive property taxes like stamp duty on conveyances and land tax when it brings down its own budget.”
Paine said expedited projects such as the $60 million commitment to deliver the Northern Expressway and upgrade Port Wakefield Road by 2010 and $12.6 million for planning the South Road upgrade would greatly boost the productive capacity of those areas and open up new employment land in and around Adelaide.
“Even if the boom is everything we hope it to be, it will be of limited benefit for to South Australia if it doesn’t result in local jobs and local incomes,” Paine said.
“By opening up new opportunities for investors in employment land, these initiatives increase our capacity to generate employment and prosperity from our mining boom.”
Paine also praised a commitment of $3 million this financial year to project urban congestion to 2030 and target improvements in public transport, road networks, traffic management, land use and demand management.
“Given the size of population we are expecting on the back of our boom industries, it shows great foresight by the Federal Government to examine how we will transport people into the future,” Paine said.
“We look forward to working with the Federal and State Governments in implementing these much-needed initiatives.”
For further comment please contact:
Nathan Paine, Executive Director, Property Council of Australia, 0448 445 177