The Coalition Government has established a Regional Ministerial Taskforce to address key issues in regional Australia including the Northern Territory.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull will chair the Taskforce while Deputy Leader of the Nationals and Minister for Regional Development, Fiona Nash, will be deputy chair.
Country Liberals Senator for the Northern Territory, Nigel Scullion, said the Taskforce would bring together relevant portfolio Ministers to address key issues such as employment, education, communications and health in regional Australia.
“The Taskforce will aim to improve the lives of rural, regional and remote Australians, including Territorians,” Senator Scullion said.
“The issues affecting rural, regional and remote Territorians are not restricted to the regional development portfolio. The issues span across many portfolios including health, education, transport and infrastructure.
“A cross-portfolio taskforce is the best way to look at those issues and allows us to continue to expand on our investment in the NT across government, not just in the regional development portfolio.
“It’s important we do not consider issues in silos and that our thinking goes well beyond the next electoral cycle.
“The regions are responsible for almost three-quarters of Australia’s exports, with the Territory well known for its agricultural production including cattle and mangoes as well as a strong tourism sector.”
Other members of the Taskforce are Agriculture and Water Resources Minister, Barnaby Joyce; Education Minister, Simon Birmingham; Health Minister, Greg Hunt; Infrastructure and Transport Minister, Darren Chester; Industry, Innovation and Science Minister, Arthur Sinodinos AO; and Employment Minister Michaelia Cash.
“The Coalition Government has a proud track record of investing in regional Australia through the Building Better Regions Fund, investment in regional jobs and infrastructure programmes, funding for mobile black spots and appointing a rural health commissioner,” Senator Scullion said.