Page 1694 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 13 May 2015

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The Treasurer, Mr Hockey, recently affirmed his support for the project when he spoke at the recent Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce lunch. He discussed the importance of infrastructure for Australia’s future and spoke about the ACT government’s involvement in the asset recycling program. He said, “If it is productive infrastructure, we will back it and we will fund it.” And they are.

Of course, we have other federal Liberals nationally who strongly support investment in light rail infrastructure. Malcolm Turnbull recently posted on social media a picture of himself riding on the Gold Coast light rail. His one word to describe it? “Excellent.” These are the views and the commitments of Mr Coe’s federal colleagues.

I love how Mr Coe always dismisses anyone who is paid to do a job. It is an interesting debating point. But what he cannot dismiss is the fact that the industry body here in Australia that represents global, national and local businesses who have an interest in a safe and secure environment for investment in infrastructure, Infrastructure Partnerships Australia, have come out and said that we can ill afford a reputation as Australia’s sovereign risk capital. They are the people who know. They deal in these markets for investment and infrastructure every day, and they know what a reckless and dangerous precedent Mr Coe and his colleagues hope to set by threatening to tear up the capital metro contract.

In this increasingly competitive world, cities can either be seen as safe, secure places to invest or they can be seen as risky and not worth people’s time or money. Mr Coe wants to achieve the latter. We, this Labor government, want to achieve the former because we know, as our city grows and develops, we must leverage investment from the private sector to complement the money that the taxpayer can bring to the table to deliver the infrastructure our city needs.

We will have over 600,000 people by the middle of the century. We are investing in infrastructure to meet that growth. And that growth overwhelmingly is occurring in the Gungahlin and inner north districts. I commend Ms Fitzharris’s motion to the Assembly.

Debate interrupted in accordance with standing order 74 and the resumption of the debate made an order of the day for a later hour.

Sitting suspended from 12.29 to 2.30 pm.

Questions without notice


MR HANSON: My question is to the Minister for Health and it is regarding the strike action by ACT staff doctors. Minister, the Canberra Times, on 27 April, stated that you have failed to convince striking doctors that they will be protected in their salary negotiations. You have previously said that this is a matter for the ACT Health Directorate. Minister, how many doctors are planning to strike, what is the dispute and what is the nature of the strike action?

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