Queensland Ponders Fast-Track For Migrants Who Choose Regions

By ExpatBriefing.com Editorial 21 January, 2014

Queensland Premier Campbell Newman has told the media that the state is considering plans that would offer a fast track to immigrants who agree to settle for at least five years outside the southeast.

Newman explained that consultations undertaken as part of the state's Queensland Plan had found strong support for a policy of regionalization, with a view to achieving a 50-50 population balance between southeast Queensland and the rest of the state.

He added he had discussed a draft plan with Australia Immigration Minister Scott Morrison, and said that it would be possible to "positively incentivize" immigrants to move into regional areas. In particular, he suggested that those on waiting lists could "get bumped up the queue if you agree to go and spend at least five years in a regional city in Queensland, a regional town."

Newman further suggested that the plan could also mean Queensland taking more immigrants than other states, as it had "places to put them."

He said that building new infrastructure in southeast Queensland would be more expensive than building in the regions, but that many regional cities had the capacity to grow right now and could "easily absorb" migrants.

Concurring with Newman, Queensland Local Government Minister David Crisafulli said that "we want regional Queensland to be the powerhouse of this state's economy," and for people to be part of regional communities and create jobs.

The Queensland Plan is a collaborative process for developing a vision of the state over next 30 years. It involves community members, business and industry representatives, state and local government officers and Members of Parliament.

Tags: Australia | Expats | Immigration | Immigration |


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