Abbot to introduce 'food bowl' white paper
Prime Ministerial hopeful Tony Abbot has had a “vision” of the construction and expansion of dams in the country’s northern region.
The leader of the Coalition will reportedly reveal details of his “northern development 2030 vision” in Townsville this Friday, it will likely include plans for submissions to infrastructure authorities and environmental groups, and propose moving important government services (CSIRO, biosecurity and other departments) up north.
A version of the plan was leaked to media in February, it had been created by mining billionaire Gina Rinehart’s lobbying group ‘Australians for Northern Development and Economic Vision’. Mr Abbot has stopped short of proposing all the parts of Ms Rinehart’s original plan; he is not in favour of separate tax zones to encourage migration north and said in an interview overnight he would not want to build a dam on the Daly River, a much-loved fishing and recreation spot in NT.
Mr Abbott said the Territory does need think about removing "restrictive" land use requirements, so it can be opened up for development.
The federal Coalition's development proposals envisage northern Australia becoming a "food bowl" for Asia.