Cattle train

Hinchinbrook MP, Andrew Cripps, has welcomed encouraging signs in the federal Coalition’s budget that investment in regional infrastructure and agriculture, including in North Queensland, could flow in the near future.

Mr Cripps said a number of budget allocations indicated the upcoming Agriculture White Paper and Northern Australia White Paper from the federal Coalition would be supported with complementary funding programs.

“I am very encouraged that the Abbott Government intends to establish a $5 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility, which will be available to support the delivery of major infrastructure projects in Northern Australia, such as ports, railways, pipelines and electricity generation” said Mr Cripps.

“I’m also pleased to see the Abbott Government provide $100 million to improve the roads and supply chains involved in Northern Australia’s beef industry, including a commitment to complete the sealing of the Hann Highway, which will also be a boost for coastal agriculture and tourism” he said.

Mr Cripps complemented the Federal Coalition on committing to a series of funding programs that would support projects in regional and rural areas, including:

• $1 billion for the National Stronger Regions Fund
• $300 million for the Bridges Renewal Program
• $200 million for the Heavy Vehicle Safety and Productivity Program
• Extra $350 million for the Roads to Recovery Program
• $73.3 million to support Regional Development Australia committees
• $45 million for the Stronger Communities Program