Northern-based LNP Senator Ian Macdonald has responded to public wrangling over the Northern Australia Co-operative Research Centre by assuring northerners that it will be based in the North.
Senator Macdonald, who is Chair of the Northern Australia Whitepaper Implementation Oversight Committee said that the process for establishing a research hub had to take its course, but one thing he could guarantee was, that it will be headquartered somewhere in the North.
“Clearly Townsville has a good claim with the multitude of research and higher education facilities in the city,” Senator Macdonald said.
“But then Cairns, Darwin and Rockhampton also have claims which need to be considered in the process.”
“I am confident the right decision will be made.
“The Turnbull Government is a government that is actually putting it’s money where its mouth is when it comes to northern infrastructure in all its forms.
“Unlike the Queensland Government, which pretends it is interested in the North, but commits very little.
“I am all for development of Northern Australia and I don’t think public claims and counterclaims between regions in the north is productive or sensible.
“It is important to understand that the CRC is a research hub which collaborates with industry and research institutions to facilitate development in the North. It will not involve large scale building blocks. It is about getting the right collaboration for research from wherever that research is available.
“I will continue to work with Ewen Jones, Warren Entsch and George Christensen to ensure the North receives more than its fair share of federal government money,” Senator Macdonald said.