Page 1050 - Week 04 - Tuesday, 24 March 2015

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In addition, talking down our local economy has an equally dampening effect. Those opposite do not seem to mind talking down the economy or introducing doubt in investors’ minds. I am not sure they realise how they are viewed as introducing a major risk to the territory’s economy—what that risk might mean for future projects, for future contracts, what level of confidence the investment community might have if a previous contract has been torn up and what this risk means for jobs in our community. What this means is serious.

I am proud to be an advocate for jobs in our community. I know we need investment to keep delivering the jobs Canberrans deserve—indeed, the jobs Canberrans need, given the commonwealth’s glee at removing federal jobs from Canberra. Despite the Canberra Liberals’ efforts to do all they can to make sure they gain short-term political advantage out of the capital metro project, a long-term investment in a modern, fast and sustainable public transport system, they have yet to outline exactly what actions they will take to make sure this project does not go ahead and have not been able to say exactly what that will mean, which leaves us all wondering. And it certainly leaves the investment community wondering.

How they will make the case to those looking to invest in our long-term tourism projects, in our nation-leading urban renewal projects such as city to the lake and the renewal of Northbourne Avenue, or indeed investing in our higher education sector, is unclear.

This government will continue to govern for the long term, to govern for the long-term interests of our economy, for the long-term sustainability of our transport system and the long-term sustainability of Canberra’s private sector. Investor confidence in our economy is vital to our future. I look forward to the debate today and to our combined efforts to do what we can to ensure we maintain the highest levels of investor confidence in the ACT.

Discussion concluded.

University of Canberra Amendment Bill 2015

Debate resumed.

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Minister for Planning, Minister for Roads and Parking, Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations, Minister for Children and Young People and Minister for Ageing) (3.44): As our city grows towards a population of 500,000 over the next 20 years, it is becoming increasingly important for us to address the challenge of creating a livable, resilient and connected place for all Canberrans and those in the surrounding region. Canberra, like many other cities, is facing a 21st century challenge posed by population growth, climate change and energy use. The capacity of our growing city and region to absorb larger and changing populations and improve quality of life for all residents will depend to a considerable degree on the extent to which we can look at the urban environment and be able to accommodate its future growth but also to prosper from it. Therefore, the way in which we embrace the change is critical.

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