Central Queensland businesses to reap up to $4 million with early work for military training area expansion

Joint Media Release

The Hon Michelle Landry MP

Federal Member for Capricornia

Central Queensland businesses are already benefiting from the economic opportunities being generated by the expansion of the Shoalwater Bay Training Area (SWBTA) under the Australia-Singapore Military Training Initiative (ASMTI).

Assistant Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon David Fawcett and Federal Member for Capricornia, Ms Michelle Landry MP, today met with the managing contractor, Laing O’Rourke, and locally engaged engineering and design businesses delivering key aspects of the SWBTA expansion.

“Defence is committed to providing economic benefits and opportunities for local industry across the life of the ASMTI,” Assistant Minister Fawcett said.

“Laing O’Rourke was announced as the Managing Contractor for the expansion of the SWBTA in September 2018, and has made great progress in engaging local industry, which is great news for businesses throughout the region.

“Laing O’Rourke was also fostering a partnership with Central Queensland University to provide sustainable career pathways for the region.

“The Singapore Government’s investment of around $2 billion in purchasing land and developing and enhancing the training areas in Central and North Queensland will meet the future needs of the Australian Defence Force and an increased presence of Singapore Armed Forces personnel.”

Minister Landry said this work alone was anticipated to bring in up to $4 million into the local economy.

“It is great to see 16 companies from Rockhampton, Yeppoon, Gladstone and the surrounding region participating in the design phase of this major project, providing engineering, geotechnical and surveying services,” Ms Landry said.

“A number of industry briefings, presentations and consultations have been held, and a local presence has been established in Rockhampton to keep local businesses informed about opportunities arising from the ASMTI.”

Assistant Minister Fawcett said more industry engagements were planned for the coming months.

“Laing O’Rourke’s Local Industry Capability Plan and commitment to targeting work from the Central Queensland region means local industry can make the most of these opportunities, leading to more local investment and industry support as the Initiative progresses,” Assistant Minister Fawcett said.

“This partnership will see Laing O’Rourke hosting industry placements, recruiting graduates and developing an ASMTI training hub to give students and apprentices’ access to work with local sub-contractors.”

The ASMTI is delivering enhanced training areas for the Australian Defence Force in Central and North Queensland, enhancing Australia’s bilateral defence relationship with Singapore and providing significant local economic opportunities.

To learn more about the ASMTI or to get involved visit: www.defence.gov.au/Initiatives/ASMTI/

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