From the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, the Hon. Barnaby Joyce MP, and the Minister for Regional Development, Minister for Local Government and Territories and Minister for Regional Communications, Senator the Hon. Fiona Nash
The 2017–18 Budget builds on the Australian Government’s investment in our regions to deliver the foundations for a strong and sustainable economy for all Australians. This publication outlines over 450 initiatives that benefit regional Australia, across health, education, employment, defence, infrastructure, telecommunications, agriculture and water resources and other portfolios and demonstrates our commitment to creating jobs and economic growth in Australia’s regions.
Australia is a nation of great economic strength and stability and regional Australia is critical to our national economy. Nearly eight million people live outside our capital cities and 3.8 million are employed in regional areas. In 2016, our agriculture, forestry, fishing and mining industries—located across our diverse regions—made up 57 per cent of the value of Australia’s merchandise exports. However, while many of our regional centres and our cities are flourishing, some regions and smaller towns are facing changing patterns of population and economic activity.
Regional Australia—Driving Our Economy 2017–18 outlines the Australian Government investments that will benefit those who choose to live, work and invest in regional Australia. It demonstrates our commitment to securing a bright future for regional Australia and spreading the opportunities and benefits of our growing economy to all corners of the country.
The department’s budget is presented in the Portfolio Budget Statements (PBS). These provide information to the Parliament on the proposed allocation of the department’s resources in the relevant financial year. PBS and PAES details financial arrangements, allocates expenditure against individual activities and describes how these activities contribute to the Government’s policy priorities.