Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 04 Hansard (Tuesday, 3 May 2022) . . Page.. 1129 ..
Ginninderra electorate—IT industry
MR CAIN (Ginninderra) (4.34): Recently I was honoured to take a tour of the highly impressive NEXTDC C1 Data Centre in Bruce, in my electorate of Ginninderra. Hearing from legal counsel Timothy Butler and the NEXTDC team about their high-end, smart IT service operations was an enjoyable and fascinating experience.
It was exciting to see a leading Australian technology company with a nationwide network establish itself in my electorate, bringing jobs, services and opportunities to Belconnen and the ACT. A smart IT industry should be a focus for the future of Canberra’s employment environment. Working with Canberra’s established public sector and emerging private sector presents a plethora of opportunities for smart industries to thrive here.
The success of the NEXTDC C1 Data Centre serves as a shining testament to the opportunity that the ACT has to capitalise on our capital status. Canberra is a natural hub for extraordinary people. Our cultural institutions, top-ranked universities and highly educated population attract the best and brightest across this nation and around the world; but, unfortunately, we struggle to retain many of them.
We must unlock the value of private sector jobs and economic growth in the ACT and continue to advocate for the removal of burdensome red tape, which all too often scares off highly skilled graduates and job seekers. How fantastic, for example, would it be for a University of Canberra IT graduate or ANU graduate to cross Haydon Drive and work in smart IT for a company like NEXTDC? To inspire young people to stay in Canberra, to be part of exciting, new, emerging industries, we need to ensure that the young people have a chance to start a career in Canberra in industries like smart IT that will set them up for a fulfilling professional life and ready to serve our society for the future.
The advent of COVID, of course, has shaken the model of office-based employment to its very foundation. Remote work is increasingly looking to be the future of work for millions of Australians. Digital and data literacy should be a focus for Canberra as the prevalence of IT solutions will increasingly impact every industry. Smart IT will be a key to this transition and it is vital that Canberra stays ahead of the game to ensure economic resilience and a futureproofed job market.
I wish Tim and the C1 team at NEXTDC all the best for their business and look forward to seeing many more smart IT businesses and highly skilled professionals realise the strong potential of Canberra as a destination for next-generation industries. Thank you.
MR DAVIS (Brindabella) (4.37): I rise, as the vice-president and secretary of the “Davo caucus” in this Assembly, to respond to my esteemed colleague Minister Davidson’s remarks as a fellow member for Kambah. Yes, of course it was a great travesty, I think, when the Electoral Commission, in its wisdom, chose to divide the