Townsville Bulletin

Palaszczuk channels Beattie for Smart State 2.0


Annastacia Palaszczuk

ANNASTACIA Palaszczuk and her cabinet are poised to sign off on a new plan to propel Queensland to a new age of innovation and scientific breakthrou­ghs, drawing on the memory of the Beattie government’s Smart State.

Cabinet will on Tuesday resolve to get started on a whole-of-government, 10-year plan for the sector to create up to 80,000 new jobs and $11bn in new revenue predicted as possible in a University of Queensland study of how to expand what’s already happening at the state’s innovation hubs.

The government will also release a Queensland innovation strategy discussion paper for public consultati­on with the findings of what needs to be done to grow the sector, beyond additional funding, to be completed early 2022 as the state sets a post-covid path of economic growth.

The university’s research finds the jobs and $11bn-a-year windfall could be achieved simply by “boosting growth of the state’s three most significan­t innovation precincts to global benchmark standards”.

Over the past two decades, Queensland has generated the Herston Health Precinct; the Boggo Road Precinct, encompassi­ng the Ecoscience­s Precinct, the Princess Alexandra Hospital and the Translatio­nal Research Institute; and the Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct.

In the regions, there is the Townsville Knowledge and Cairns University Hospital Precincts and the Agtech and Logistics Hub in Toowoomba.

Ms Palaszczuk said Queensland had a good track record in investing in innovation.

“In recent decades the Smart State and Advance Queensland initiative­s have supported our impressive innovation sector including our world class research centres which will further fire up our economy,” she said.

Ms Palaszczuk’s annual CEDA State of the State speech last week painted the scene for a “golden age” for Queensland in the lead up to the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

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