Published on Sep 4, 2015
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Regional NSW is set for an employment boost following Premier Mike Baird’s announcement of a four-year Jobs for NSW initiative to create 150,000 new jobs.
At least 30 per cent of the $190 million fund set aside for the program will be channelled to regional and rural areas.
This adds a slice to the regional funding pie, with 30 per cent of the $20 billion Rebuilding NSW fund and the $110 million Regional Tourism Infrastructure Fund already committed to enhancing employment and economic development opportunities in regional NSW.
Minister for Industry, Resources and Energy, Anthony Roberts said Jobs for NSW would support business investment.
“Jobs for NSW will facilitate the provision of innovative, cost effective and strategically targeted incentives for economic development in NSW,” Mr Roberts said.
“From established industries to emerging technologies, Jobs for NSW will target the jobs of the future and guide the NSW Government on how to best maximise the state’s resources, talent and potential.”
Cessnock City Council Economic Development Manager Jane Holdsworth said the initiative was good news for the LGA in light of recent unemployment figures.
“Our region is in transition. Historically, coal mining has been a significant economic and employment driver,” Ms Holdsworth said.
“However, successive mine closures drained jobs from the region. Trepidation about the Chinese economy and a flat coal market mean we can’t necessarily rely upon those jobs coming back into the region.
“We need to look forward and identify new job markets to ensure the sustainability of our LGA.”
Ms Holdsworth said the alignment of a number of state-funded projects, as well as the Senate Inquiry into the role of regional capitals had the potential improve the outlook for regional NSW.
“This funding announcement is very timely,” Ms Holdsworth said.
“We are currently analysing data that will lay the foundation for a business investment attraction program for our LGA.
“We know that with the right support and investment, regional areas such as ours have the capacity to contribute skills, knowledge and innovation required to underpin a resilient and sustainable NSW.”
One fund moving forward
Business growth and development is supported through a number of funds including the State Investment Attraction Scheme (SIAS) and Regional Industries Investment Fund (RIIF). Moving forward, these will be rolled into a single fund. Current SIAS and RIIF agreements will continue under the terms of those agreements.
Visit the Department of of Industry for more information about Jobs for NSW.
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