FCO Major Projects Lobby 2013 Petition

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We, the undersigned, call on Candidates for the 2013 Federal Election to confirm their support for Fraser Coast Opportunities' three priority Economic Development projects, forecast to create more than 4,000 new jobs and an increase in ongoing annual economic output of $600M.

They include the following:

•         Fly In Fly Out, Aviation Industry and Employment Precinct; (2,486 jobs)
•         Mary River Marine Industry and Employment Precinct; (1,085 jobs) and
•         Fraser Coast Sport and Recreation Event Precinct projects (605 jobs).

Fraser Coast Opportunities Ltd (FCO) is the Fraser Coast Region's peak body for regional marketing, investment attraction and event and tourism development. These projects have been chosen because of the number and type of jobs they will create, and the contribution they can make towards diversifying and strengthening the Fraser Coast Region's economy.

As an urgent strategic imperative, the Fraser Coast Region must not only build on its strengths, but also diversify its economic structure and expand the range of employment options available to residents. Failure may put up to $6.2 billion in annual economic output and 27,000 jobs at risk.

•         Government has a key role to play securing the Fraser Coast Region's economic future for the long term.

Tourism and Manufacturing are core strengths, yet they leave our communities highly exposed to exchange rate fluctuation and global economic circumstances, evidenced by local unemployment rates approaching 10%.

The need to close the gap between the jobs and population growth will become even more critical as the Fraser Coast region's population swells as forecast from 102,000 to 130,000 people by 2020.

While a strong construction investment pipeline and trends towards a lower value Australian dollar are providing some immediate relief, the strategic imperative to create a more diverse and durable economic structure remains the region's number one priority.

There are three high priority strategic reasons for government assistance:

•         The need to close the gap between population growth and the number of jobs available;
•         The need to diversify the region's economy to be more resilient to economic shock; and
•         The need to address 'market failures' where 'first movers' are required to pay high upfront capital infrastructure costs that benefit following competitors - presenting a significant barrier to investment.

Government assistance is required to overcome these barriers and realise development outcomes result in more than 4,000 new jobs, an increase in annual economic output of $600M, and a more durable and resilient economy for the future.

Authorised by David Spear
General Manager, Fraser Coast Opportunities

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