The NSW Government has unveiled its comprehensive 20-year vision for regional NSW.

The strategic plan is to accelerate economic growth in key sectors and attract more investments in regional communities.

Premier Gladys Berejiklian and Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW John Barilaro today unveiled the vision, which focuses on connectivity and water security, to industry and community leaders in Bathurst in the State’s Central West.

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“This is a comprehensive vision for the future of regional NSW for the next 20 years and beyond that focuses on job creation and promoting regional development,” Ms Berejiklian said.

“Our world-leading regional industries will be able to take full advantage of booming global demand and in turn, create an additional 260,000 new jobs beyond current job-growth predictions for between now and 2038.”

The NSW Government will accelerate growth in key sectors such as agribusiness, tertiary education and health care and help drive the future of regional economies, by providing the right infrastructure and services to support that growth.

The Government will inject funds into projects that form the foundations of economic growth, like freight, digital connectivity, water security, access to resources, skills, and education. 

With $4.2 billion in funding from the Snowy Hydro Legacy Fund, the first allocation of money will be spent on scoping studies and planning works for an inland port and investment precinct in Parkes. 

“The Parkes National Logistics Hub is just one part of the vision and it clearly signals the types of big-ticket projects we’re looking at investing in. Ones that will totally transform the regions for generations to come,” Mr Barilaro said.

“The Parkes precinct will attract major employers, drive local economies and create jobs across the Central West, and is perfectly situated to take advantage of the Inland Rail project, which will allow local products to be delivered across Australia and around the world.” 

The vision brings together long-term planning and existing strategies, including the Future Transport Strategy 2056, the NSW State Infrastructure Strategy and an extension of the Regional Development Framework, which launched three core objectives:

  1. Amenity -  providing quality services and infrastructure in regional NSW
  2. Growth – aligning effort to support growing regional centres
  3. Potential – identifying and activating economic potential 

The principles for future investment are focused on seven key principles below to guide the NSW Government when making decisions on regional economic development.

  1. Improved travel between regional centres and from cities and international gateways
  2. Freight networks that will increase the competitiveness of key regional sectors
  3. Affordable, reliable and fast internt to support people and businesses
  4. Reliable accessible water and energy
  5. A skilled labour force for current and future needs of the regions
  6. Recognising each region's strengths and underlying endowments 
  7. Regulation and planning to promote commercial opportunities

“We’re determined to ensure we’re meeting the needs for today while also making sure we’re better prepared for a stronger tomorrow,” Mr Barilaro said.