Re­gions on Gov­ern­ment’s radar

Pilbara News - - News - Ben Har­vey and Jenne Bram­mer

Re­gional WA is set for bet­ter telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, ac­cu­rate weather data and su­pe­rior com­mod­ity freight roads as part of a new $106 mil­lion in­vest­ment by the State Gov­ern­ment to sup­port the growth of the agri­cul­tural and food pro­duc­tion sec­tors.

Re­gional De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Terry Red­man said a list of priority projects had been iden­ti­fied by the State Gov­ern­ment-com­mis­sioned In­fra­struc­ture Au­dit to iden­tify gaps and con­straints in ma­jor in­fra­struc­ture, and to de­ter­mine strate­gic op­por­tu­ni­ties to in­crease pro­duc­tion and add value to pre­mium agri­food prod­ucts.

Fi­nalised last March, the au­dit listed 17 priority in­fra­struc­ture projects that would help achieve the tar­get of dou­bling the value of WA’s agri­food sec­tor by 2025. These are be­ing funded through the Gov­ern­ment’s Roy­al­ties for Re­gions pro­gram

Mr Red­man said $16.3 mil­lion would be spent seal­ing the re­main­ing 7.5km of the Moona­mang Road con­nect­ing Ku­nunurra to Le­gune Sta­tion in the North­ern Ter­ri­tory.

In WA, 41km of the road was sealed as part of the State Gov­ern­ment’s sup­port for stage two of the Ord Ir­ri­ga­tion ex­pan­sion project, but the re­main­ing gravel sec­tion is un­pass­able in wet con­di­tions.

Mr Red­man said seal­ing the road would pro­vide the trans­port in­fra­struc­ture re­quired to fa­cil­i­tate fur­ther ex­pan­sion of the Ord Ir­ri­gated Agri­cul­ture de­vel­op­ment.

Fur­ther south, $48 mil­lion has been al­lo­cated for up­grad­ing roads re­lied on for cart­ing agri­cul­tural com­modi­ties. Mean­while, $15 mil­lion will be spent up­grad­ing roads used for cart­ing agri­cul­tural lime sand from the coastal ar­eas, where it is sourced to in­land agri­cul­tural ar­eas, re­sult­ing in safer and more ef­fi­cient cartage.

Fi­nally, $5 mil­lion has been des­ig­nated for the up­grad­ing of ex­ist­ing weather radars in Ger­ald­ton, Esper­ance and Albany to Dop­pler radar, pro­vid­ing more ac­cu­rate and timely weather in­for­ma­tion.

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