20/05/2008 - 14:56

CCI condemns federal think tank

20/05/2008 - 14:56

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The recent appointment of The Board of Infrastructure Australia, who will allocate funding from the $20 billion national infrastructure fund, has been condemned by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia for not giving WA business a dire

The recent appointment of The Board of Infrastructure Australia, who will allocate funding from the $20 billion national infrastructure fund, has been condemned by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia for not giving WA business a direct say.

Despite having two Western Australian representatives from within government and academia, the CCI says that the local business community in the state has been forgotten.

The group will decide how to spend the proceeds of the new Building Australia Fund, which was announced in last week's budget.

CCI Chief Executive James Pearson says that the state's rapid expansion has placed strain on existing infrastructure, to the point where bottlenecks have the potential to restrict further business growth.

"Western Australia has unique infrastructure challenges compared to the rest of the nation, which is another reason why the state's business community is entitled to a say in how the $20 billion fund is invested," Mr Pearson said in a statement.

Full announcement below:

The state's peak business organisation, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia, is disappointed that Western Australian business will not have a direct say in the allocation of a new $20 billion national infrastructure fund.

The Federal Government has appointed several senior business executives to the Board of Infrastructure Australia, but not one is based in WA.

The group has the important task of deciding how to spend the proceeds of the new Building Australia Fund announced in last week's federal budget.

This is a strange omission considering the importance of WA business to the nation's overall wealth and prosperity.

In 2006-07 WA accounted for 13 per cent of the national economy and over a third of Australia's total exports. It is time for Western Australia to receive its fair share of infrastructure funding from the Commonwealth.

CCI has previously called for a large share of the fund to be set aside for vital economy building projects in Western Australia - the powerhouse of the national economy.

While the Board includes two Western Australian representatives from within government and academia, CCI believes the local business community should have a voice in the group to reflect the state's importance to Australia's economic development and prosperity.

The interests of WA business need to be heard on this issue as the rapid expansion of the local economy has placed considerable strain on the state's existing infrastructure to the point where bottlenecks have the potential to restrict further development and business growth.

Western Australia has unique infrastructure challenges compared to the rest of the nation, which is another reason why the state's business community is entitled to a say in how the $20 billion fund is invested.

Addressing the state's significant infrastructure needs will help secure Western Australia's and the nation's economic future by giving business and industry confidence to invest in the country's best performing economy

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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