Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 5 Hansard (5 May) . .
We know that many shoppers from Canberra and the region currently travel interstate, particularly to Sydney, to utilise IKEA stores and that Canberrans spend a significant amount on IKEA products. That money is currently being spent in Sydney. Those funds will now be kept within the territory and residents from the surrounding regions will come to Canberra, as IKEA is a major drawcard. This will benefit other businesses in the territory and stimulate our economy.
MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.
DR BOURKE: Chief Minister, why is it important to encourage these diverse forms of investment in the territory economy?
MR BARR: Undoubtedly, in recent times the territory economy has been significantly impacted by the decisions of the commonwealth government. Approximately 30 per cent of the territory economy's gross value-add is created in the public sector. So diversification through investment in industries where Canberra has a competitive advantage helps to manage the impacts of the significant risk that is faced by our city, one that we have all seen materialise in the last 18 months in particular, and that has been the commonwealth's significant reduction in employment and spending in Canberra.
Our increased investment across a broad range of industries develops a wider range of employment opportunities in Canberra. Not only is it important to the economy as a whole but its most significant difference is what this means for Canberra households, Canberra families, where quality of life is undoubtedly improved by having a job. A more diverse range of work opportunities for our community is good for our community.
Without further investment to grow and diversify our economy, the people of the ACT will remain subject to decisions made by politicians from interstate, particularly conservative politicians who have no particular love for the city of Canberra. And this is why the territory Labor government will always continue to pursue strategies to grow Canberra's economy, to create more jobs and to support this city, because we stand up for Canberra.
MR WALL: Madam Speaker, my question is to the Minister for Planning. Minister, following pressure from the community and the Canberra Liberals, your government agreed to proceed with master plans for Tharwa village and Calwell. When will implementation of the master plans for both Calwell and Tharwa village commence?
MR GENTLEMAN: I thank Mr Wall for his interest in the areas of Tharwa and Calwell. Yes, the master plans for those areas are in preparation. I am just looking for the date when we can look at implementation. We will certainly start to consult with the community as soon as we possibly can. I have had some conversations with the Tharwa community on what they want to see in their master plan. I can come back to you with those dates as soon as I get the detail.
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