National Roundtable on Dams and Water Infrastructure Announced

Tasmania has been included in a shortlist of irrigation projects to be considered for federal funding at a National Water Infrastructure Roundtable to be held on Wednesday 29 October in Canberra.

Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, said that the Government’s Water Infrastructure Ministerial Working Group had identified around 30 projects which should be a priority to progress from 63 projects submitted by the states and territories.

“We have some great opportunities to build capacity in water infrastructure and we have invited investors and the banks to meet with stakeholders and find out what is required to get these projects moving,” Minister Joyce said.

Tasmanian Irrigation Chief Executive Officer Chris Oldfield welcomed the fact Tasmania had been shortlisted.

“Tasmanian Irrigation has five proposed tranche two projects shovel-ready for construction once a Federal funding commitment of $110 million is secured” Mr Oldfield said. “These projects are now in the national spotlight, which gives us a significant opportunity to attract this funding.

“I acknowledge Bass MP Andrew Nikolic’s efforts to promote the value of Tasmanian irrigation projects with his ministerial colleagues in Canberra.” Mr Nikolic said irrigation schemes in Tasmania were starting to have a major impact on the state’s agricultural industry, opening up new opportunities for cropping and grazing.

“The right infrastructure will help Australia meet future challenges by managing a vital resource and growing the economy in the long term.”

The Government’s Water Infrastructure Ministerial Working Group has identified a shortlist of projects which could potentially begin immediately, or which could be fast-tracked for development.

It is hoped the roundtable will bring together everyone involved in water infrastructure across Australia, including investors, representatives of irrigators, mining and power industries, financiers, state and territory governments, local governments and construction companies.

The shortlist of projects includes sites in Tasmania, Queensland, New South Wales, Northern Territory and Western Australia.

Irrigation contributed to 28 per cent of Australia’s agricultural production in 2012–13.

Media contact:

Julian Burgess
0419 750 286

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