Specialised skills approach to service rail’s construction boom

With work ramping up across the rail sector, labour hire, recruitment, managed labour and safety management firm Category 5 is focusing on its unique, specialised offering for a stretched skills market.

 


The pipeline of rail construction and maintenance work is estimated at more than $100 billion over the next decade. After construction work rose 56 per cent in FY18 and another 5 per cent in FY19, BIS Oxford Economics estimates it will almost double over the next five years. One of the sector’s biggest concerns as work ramps up in cities and regions all around the country, is the supply of skilled labour to meet this surging demand. The Australasian Railway Association-commissioned Skills Crisis report, conducted by BIS Oxford Economics at the end of 2018, estimated that by the expected peak for rail construction in 2023, the sector could be left more than 70,000 workers short of the jobs needed.

Paul Tobin, Category 5 Labour Management’s General Manager for Australia’s East Coast and New Zealand, tells Rail Express the skills shortage is the single greatest challenge facing the sector in both countries as a result of the infrastructure boom.

“Rail can be a tough, physically challenging working environment,” Tobin says. “In recent times people have been steered toward careers requiring university degrees rather than these labour/tradebased roles.”

While the trend has been towards university degrees, Tobin says more and more rail construction projects are valuing workers with qualifications and skillsets that might commonly be seen as less prestigious and sought after than a university degree.

“Specific rail skills and experience have largely gone unrecognised in the past, but I think the industry is really shifting toward rail specialists, and understanding the value they can bring to a project,” he says. “The rail and infrastructure boom is going to be a game changer, and I think we are going to be left short of that specialist labour.”

Understanding where those gaps will emerge in the labour market is key to Category 5’s business. In recent years, the company has already responded to growth in demand in a number of key sectors, focusing on a deeper understanding of the needs of specific operators. Its Cat 5 Rail business has established teams serving a number of segments of the rail sector.

“Roles like traction overhead lineman, signalling technician and the like have come under real demand and set to continue,” Tobin says, citing an example.

With the significant growth in the traction overhead line sector, the company focused on providing highly skilled and experienced personnel for this part of the market. Subsequently, Cat 5 Rail has built specialty teams which have worked on the removal projects for nine level crossings on Melbourne’s Cranbourne- Packenham line. Cat 5 Rail also supplies specialist hi-rail plant and equipment for overhead wiring construction and maintenance.

“All our linesmen are nationally accredited and hold the competency on the Rail Industry Worker system,” Tobin says. “We have some of the most experienced and capable overhead support staff known throughout Australia and New Zealand.”

Cat 5 Rail has taken a similar approach to provide specialist support for signalling work, welding and track, as well as the supply of rail safeworking staff for a range of projects.

Tobin says the Cat 5 Rail team has become one of the most renowned, specifically for track work, in the Port Hedland and wider Pilbara Region. Across Australia and New Zealand, Cat 5 Rail’s track crews have worked with blue chip clients like BHP, Rio Tinto, Lend Lease, John Holland, Laing O’Rourke and Downer.

Training and education

While sourcing the right people for existing work, a critical element of solving the skills shortage for rail will be training and up-skilling workers. “For the industry to survive and excel throughout the boom, investment in training and education is going to be key,” Tobin says.

As a registered training organisation, Tobin says Category 5 is ready to help the industry meet these challenges. Sam Sycamore, Category 5’s CEO and owner, was born in Port Hedland and founded his business there after more than 15 years in senior mining and resources, oil and gas and industrial management positions. Gaining perspective from the customer side of the labour market, Sycamore identified a need for a more tailored solution than that offered by the biggest recruitment companies. He says seeing workers learn specific skills and develop into more specialised roles is one of the best aspects of the business.

“Someone might start off as a labourer, but some of these people who have worked for us for three years have become leading hands, machine operators, track machine operators,” Sycamore says. “They’re becoming specialists in their field, and that’s one of the joys of the job; seeing someone that has reached their potential or is beginning to reach their potential.”

Cat 5 Rail’s training business is partnered with Hedland High School and other organisations, to provide students the ability to undertake a Cert 2 in Rail Infrastructure.

Boosting presence

Looking to take advantage of its valuable offering for the rail sector, Category 5 has launched a new website and increased its social media presence on LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook. Tobin says the company has an excellent reputation among its existing customers, and has managed to thrive since it was founded in 2009 by focusing on the needs of its customers.

“Good old-fashioned customer service, a sense of urgency and a passion for what we do has been the fuel to our growth and success,” he says. “Our work in the Pilbara has provided the opportunity to work with a number of tier-one companies and we have been able to replicate this across the country.”

Over 10 years, the company has grown from a sole operator to a team of more than 20 dedicated professionals within Cat 5 Rail alone, servicing markets in Western Australia, Victoria and New Zealand, and soon in other states across Australia. While Category 5 works across several sectors, Tobin says rail represents the “roots” of the business.

“Cat 5 has been built from our work in the rail sector and the business has been built from a real personalised family, local type atmosphere whereby we know our clients and employees as our family and friends,” he says. “A lot of the Cat 5 clients are long term clients that have been with us from the start. We have varying lengths of contract, but our relationships continue on for the long term.”

 

Contact: catfive.com.au

Changing times, changing needs

While known as a training solutions provider for the rail industry, over the last 16 years since its inception, the Centre for Excellence in Rail Training has become much more than that.

The Centre for Excellence in Rail Training (CERT) began as a training facility in Western Australia in 2003, offering training courses for all areas required by the rail industry nationally, including rail infrastructure, rail operations, rail safeworking, rail safety investigations, rail structures and rail safety management.

Since then, the organisation has grown to become the nation-wide choice for those training courses, as well as assessment services, but also an international player delivering courses in Indonesia, Malaysia and East Africa. CERT now also offers extensive training for workers in mining, port and engineering industries, as well as its core market in rail. They are also best placed for future rail innovations such as in-cab rail signalling systems and automatic train protection systems. In addition, CERT has established training facilities in WA (Bunbury, Perth and Port Hedland) to provide training services for high risk work licences, mobile equipment, first aid, fire equipment, and training for working at heights and confined spaces.

Part of the reason for the organisation coming to take this place in the industry, according to CERT national manager, Mark Haigh, is its “ability to holistically service the industry nationally, with independent, compliant and quality training solutions”. Having presided over some of the most significant growth in CERT’s operations, throughout 2005 and 2006, Haigh has been able to establish an agile training team, designed to meet the needs of industry. CERT’s trainers have a minimum of ten years, while most have more than 20 years, experience in the industry.

Trainers have worked in the delivery of rail infrastructure, rail operations, and rail safe-working training and assessment. During this time, CERT has seen changes in Australia’s rail labour market.

“The attempt to align rail safety worker competence to national units of competence, in order to allow people to work in all states and all networks has been the biggest change in my fifteen years in the rail training industry,” Haigh said. “Allowing rail workers to have portability in their skills gives them and their families the ability to move from project to project and have sustainable lifestyles. It also allows networks, contractors and employers in general access to competent staff who have experience and exposure to rail networks nationally.”

These changes have helped CERT grow into the business that it is today, having established training facilities and engaged trainers in all states of Australia. “CERT has and will travel anywhere to support rail safety workers in gaining competence which in turn assists them in gaining employment. Our demographic spread also mitigates costs to industry,” Haigh said.

Being capable of delivering its services in such an agile manner is another reason for the CERT’s success. Uniquely placed as it is within the Australian rail landscape, and with sixteen years’ experience, CERT holds such a comprehensive repository of information about the rail industry, that it has become the first port of call for those who are confused by the lack of, or by the mixed, information available about the rail industry. CERT staff field countless calls every week from people with questions as disparate as “how do I become a train driver” to “what medicals do I need?” CERT has expertise is competency consultancy in terms of skills mapping, organisational training needs analysis, mentoring and work skills coaching.

The organisation now intends to leverage its unique place in the industry and the wealth of knowledge of its trainers to become a one-stop shop for all information related to the rail industry. As such, CERT will soon be launching its new website answering these questions, from “RIW card – what is it and how do I get one?” to “what is rail infrastructure?” CERT will share its in-depth knowledge of the industry, making the it as transparent as possible.

Its major goal in this is to help students navigate the rail industry, whether it results in or even relates to students choosing a CERT course or not.

Delivering effective training solutions remains CERT’s core business, however, especially in light of the Australasian Railway Association’s (ARA) predictions that Australia’s rail industry will struggle to cope as demand for labour peaks in the middle of the next decade and the workforce continues to age, during a time when the pipeline of rail infrastructure projects has never been bigger.

“Every state, every network in Australia is experiencing skills shortages. Investment in rail by all levels of government is high and the workforce is not keeping up with project demands. The rail industry has an ageing workforce and the investment in skills is required to ensure rail projects are sustainable,” Haigh said. CERT’s aim is to enable anyone who wants to, to be capable of meeting the rail industry’s needs.

While the organisation tailors customised cost effective and industry compliant training packages for Australia’s biggest rail networks, it is also agile enough to cater to individual needs. According to Haigh “CERT has a committed team of rail and vocational training experts dedicated to developing current and contextualised courseware to meet the needs of all rail projects nationally”.

“We are investing in the skills and currency of our trainers to ensure they can meet the demands of industry. We are not a labour hire company; we are training organisation that is committed to ensuring Australian rail safety workers have the skills to meet the needs of the rail industry for decades to come. Quality, compliance, responsiveness and flexibility in our delivery methodologies are key strategies in our business,” Haigh said.

When Paul, who is hearing impaired, required training for a new job role in Western Australia, CERT catered the course to suit his needs. The difficulty of translating the theoretical components of the course through Auslan meant Paul required a very specific environment to be able to attain a successful outcome. Paul worked with an Auslan interpreter over a course of months, rather than the usual one- or two-day courses, to translate the assessments and take extra time to slowly work through them, until Paul felt confident that he could complete the assessments.

Paul’s Employment Support Coordinator told CERT that “Paul’s self-esteem and morale has grown in leaps and bounds. From a business perspective, it’s another step in having a more flexible and can-do team which is good for everyone. CERT’s one-on-one training package delivered by Craig was certainly great value for money- thanks for making it happen.”

CERT has also partnered with another training solutions provider as part of a program designed to offer long-term unemployed and disadvantaged candidates the opportunity to complete work-based training and skills funded under the Skilling Queenslanders for Work (SQW) initiative. This is provided over an 8-10 week period across regional Queensland where rail-based employment opportunities are available. To keep as agile as possible, CERT is now in the process of changing its Student Management System.

The organisation says that is committed to investing in making the relevant changes to create a user-friendly, efficient and quick process to find and enrol in training courses. Once the transition is complete, there will be student and client portals available. From a business aspect, this will allow an employer to login and select any student in the system that has that client name listed as their employer, select them by name and book them into a selected course. It will also allow the client and individual student to view their training history and certificates.

Haigh emphasises CERT’s commitment to tackling the ongoing issues facing the future of the rail industry.

“Skills shortages, an aging workforce and access to complaint, current and cost affective training solutions are real and ongoing issues for the rail industry,” he said. “CERT has committed management, quality, training and administration teams that are conveniently situated nationally to assist rail safety workers and employers address these situations. CERT is also part of the public company Engenco, whose board is very supportive of ensuring rail industry skills are supported and developed in order to enable future projects and generations.”

 

Contact: cert.edu.au

Shadow transport minister calls for workforce research body

Federal shadow transport minister, Catherine King, reiterated her party’s promise to create a body to conduct research on the future of the industry workforce, in her address to the Rail, Tram and Bus union on Wednesday.

King described the party’s vision of a workforce forecasting and research body called Jobs and Skills Australia, under a similar model to Infrastructure Australia. The intention to create Jobs and Skills Australia was announced last month by Labour party leader, Anthony Albanese.

The body would be would assess the skills requirements for services where “government is the major funder and where demand is expected to change”, such as transport.

“This will include the manufacture, operation and maintenance of our public transport network,” said King.

The body will undertake workforce and skills analysis, and conduct capacity studies. It will be expected to review the adequacy of the training and vocational system, as well as deliver plans for targets groups such as the regions, workers over-55, and youth.

King said that she believes introducing new technology can create different job opportunities.

“I spoke yesterday with a major freight rail operator who is using real time condition monitoring to better forecast maintenance to reduce breakdowns. While that has replaced the task of physically walking the line inspecting trains in sidings. It has seen new jobs created in big data analytics, as well as increases in the maintenance schedule and maintenance jobs.”

However, transitioning jobs in industries like transport must be planned, she explained.

“People must always be at the heart of our transport system.”

Federal underspend in vocational education leads to fewer apprenticeships

The federal government has been accused of underspending towards vocational education and training programs, potentially exacerbating the skills shortage already felt by the rail industry.

The education department, this week, released its 2018-19 annual report in which it revealed it had spent less than was budgeted for key programs including trade support loans (-$68m), Australian Apprenticeships Centres (-$51m) and apprenticeship incentives (-$35m).

The government underspent $214m in vocational education and training programs in the last financial year, contributing to a total $919m underspend since 2014.

In fact, there are 150,000 fewer Australians in apprenticeships now than in 2013. With a significant skills shortage already affecting the rail industry, an underspend on TAFE training is likely an unwelcome result when the pipeline for new work has never been bigger.

Shadow education minister Tanya Plibersek accused the government of “[shortchanging] TAFE and training by $1bn despite the fact Australia is suffering a national shortage of tradies”.

The skills and employment minister Michaelia Cash rejected this, arguing that the figures “represent underspends which come from demand-driven programs in vocational education and training”.

According to Labor’s analysis of annual reports, the underspend has been persistent: with the government spending $138m less than promised in 2014-15, $247m less in 2015-16, $118m in 2016-17 and $202m in 2017-18.

The Victorian and NSW governments this week both announced programs which were aimed at boosting TAFE figures.

The NSW government announced a new program to incentivise study at TAFE, by allowing students to receive recognition for what they have already learnt in high school.

“We are incentivising high-achieving HSC students into our vocational education sector by giving them a head-start at TAFE NSW,” said Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee.

“We will do this by mapping HSC units to vocational competencies and allowing eligible students to proceed straight to assessments.”

HSC subjects that could qualify for these new TAFE pathways include mathematics, engineering studies, industrial technology and, software design and development.

Victoria, in turn, announced it would inject $500,000 for its Free TAFE courses to develop educational products and resources for Free TAFE students to have access to. The funding will also go towards additional modules for Free TAFE students to build their literacy, numeracy, digital and employability skills.

In the 2019 budget, the federal government announced a $525m skills package – including towards the creation of 80,000 new apprenticeships – but it contained just $55m of new money and $463m in reallocations from the Skilling Australians Fund.

Working with mental health: How businesses can help

In Australia, one in five people aged 16-85 years experience a mental health illness in any given year¹.

The three most common illnesses that have been identified are depressive and bipolar disorders, anxiety disorders and substance use disorders.

These don’t always occur in isolation and individuals will often experience a combination of these.

When an individual experiences poor mental for an extended period of time and to an extent that it impacts their daily lives, we consider this a mental health problem.

A mental health problem does not always mean someone has a diagnosed illness or condition. Only a qualified health professional can make that diagnosis.

If you or someone you know is experiencing mental health problems, appropriate professional help should be sought.

Mental health at work

“Creating an environment that supports and promotes the wellbeing of staff is ethically responsible. It also ensures that your organisation is meeting WHS requirements to provide an environment that is both physically and mentally safe and healthy.²”

Workplaces can have enormous influence on the wellbeing of an employee, which can also extend to their families, friends and the community.

A workplace culture that understands and supports the mental health of its workers can result in a more motivated and engaged workforce, increased productivity, and may help to reduce overall stress levels (a main contributing factor to mental health issues).

Encouraging positive attitudes and behaviours will go a long way to reducing the stigma associated with mental health, and the potential for discrimination in the workplace.

Injury is now defined to include psychological injury, including any aggravation or acceleration of a pre-existing illness.

Employers have a duty of care under the relevant legislation, to provide and monitor a safe system of work, which is without risk to employees’ health and safety, including psychological harm. Employers also have a duty to monitor employee health and wellbeing.

Early intervention and workplace initiatives 

“…through the successful implementation of an effective action to create a mentally healthy workplace, organisations, on average, can expect a positive return on investment (ROI) of 2.3³”

Just like physical injuries, early intervention programs are key in helping people developing, experiencing or recovering from mental health problems.

Creating awareness and introducing a process to help get workers the appropriate professional can prevent problems or concerns from escalating. It can also reduce the risk of social and work disengagement or substance abuse.

Mental Health First Aid Training can help by educating business leaders about how to recognise the signs and symptoms that may indicate that a worker is experiencing a mental health problem or developing a mental health disorder. This course equips people with the skills to effectively triage and support individuals until they can receive the appropriate professional help.

Implementing a Mental Health and Wellbeing Policy in the workplace is a great way to start the discussion around mental health at work. Open communication, ongoing training, meaningful support programs, as well as the commitment of senior management and business leaders is key to the successful implementation of a mental health program in the workplace.

With workers compensation claims relating to mental health conditions on the rise, now more than ever is a great time to start talking about mental health in the workplace. 

If you’d like to learn more about Mental Health First Aid Training, contact Work Healthy Australia. https://www.workhealthyaustralia.com.au/contact-us/

 

¹4326.0 – National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing: Summary of Results, 2007

²Developing a workplace mental health strategy | Heads Up | Beyond Blue

³Creating a Mentally Healthy Workplace ROI Analysis (PwC, 2014)

ARTC to tackle skills shortage with Inland Rail Skills Academy

A new Inland Rail Skills Academy will aim to forge partnerships between organisations to create education, training, skills development and employment opportunities to support the massive project.

The initiative, announced on August 22 by the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC), is aimed at creating opportunities for communities along the alignment of the route, which will link Brisbane and Melbourne via regional Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria.

“The Inland Rail Skills Academy will focus on building the skills needed for the next generation of rail workers, many of which will be based in regional communities ensuring the operation and maintenance of our new networks as they come online,” Inland Rail chief executive officer Richard Wankmuller said.

The aim of the academy will be to partner with other expert organisations to deliver 20 undergraduate scholarships for courses at the University of Southern Queensland, Charles Sturt University and La Trobe University, and Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) education programs in primary and secondary schools.

It also aims to develop rail employee capability, upgrading ARTC employees’ skills and qualifications to deliver Inland Rail.

ARTC has signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work with the Australasian Railway Association (ARA), combining their expertise to address skilled labour shortages in rail construction.

This follows the ARA releasing a report at the end of 2018 detailing a forecast shortfall in rail skills of more than 70,000 workers throughout the rail construction boom.

Under the MoU, the ARTC and ARA agreed to develop programs that offer apprenticeships and traineeships in rail related disciplines in regions along the alignment. Another objective is to build the capacity of small to medium enterprises in regional communities to participate in the Inland Rail supply chain.

“ARA welcomes ARTC’s commitment to create education, training, skills development and employment opportunities to support the Inland Rail project and we look forward to working to ensure the Academy is developing real training opportunities for skilled labour in rail construction, operations and maintenance,” ARA chief executive Danny Broad said.

“We are seeing a renaissance in new rail in Australia, with an estimated $150 billion invested by governments in new freight and passenger projects all around Australia.”

Siemens, NSW sign VET agreement

Siemens will partner with the NSW state government to develop a vocational education and training (VET) hub in Western Sydney.

NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian on August 17 said the state was finalising a Memorandum of Understanding to bring advanced technologies and innovations in VET to the Western Sydney Aerotropolis, the development surrounding the future Western Sydney Airport.

Berejiklian made the announcement ahead of a tour of a ‘Smart City’ project Siemens is developing in Berlin, where it is aiming to transform a 70 hectare industrial area into a modern, urban district with offices, residences, laboratories and production plants in place by 2030.

“The NSW Government is committed to building a supply of skilled labour to meet the jobs needs of the future,” Berejiklian said. “I’m excited to learn more about Germany’s dual system of on-the-job and classroom training and see how that works in practice for companies like Siemens.”

The state government noted Germany’s VET system provides trainees with high-level technical skills, making it especially effective at responding to changes in technology and the employment needs of business.

Siemens, an industrial manufacturer whose portfolio includes rail and signalling systems, is a major investor in VET, training around 8,000 apprentices and students in Germany each year.

NSW minister for jobs and Western Sydney Stuart Ayres said a strong VET system will be essential for ensuring the success of the Western Sydney Aerotropolis.

“The key to ensuring that additional jobs created through the Aerotropolis are sustainable is to provide workers with the skills they need for future industries,” Ayres said.

“That’s why the NSW Government will establish a permanent VET facility in the Aerotropolis with a focus on advanced manufacturing, technology and engineering.”

NTC to develop action plan for skills, harmonisation of standards

Australia’s transport ministers have asked the National Transport Commission to develop an action plan to address the skills shortage facing the rail industry.

During the 11th meeting of the Transport and Infrastructure Council – which includes transport and infrastructure ministers from all the states and territories and the federal government – a range of senior leaders from rail construction, infrastructure and operations firms had a chance to raise key issues facing the sector.

The ministers subsequently resolved to refer two key challenges to the National Transport Commission (NTC): the supply of skills and labour, and the harmonisation of rail industry standards.

The council’s communique said the NTC had been asked “to develop and circulate an action plan ahead of the November council meeting to focus on these priority areas and identify measures to be taken immediately and map out a forward work program that is designed to deliver outcomes that support the unprecedented level of investment in the rail sector”.

Australasian Railway Association boss Danny Broad welcomed the announcement by the council.

“Industry is looking to work with government in a joint partnership to solve these problems. Today’s decision gives us a framework by which to begin to address the issues,” Broad said.

Together state, territory and federal governments are set to spend more than $150 billion on new rail and rollingstock projects over the next 15 years. The ARA late last year released a BIS Oxford Economics report, ‘Rail Skills Crisis – A Call to Action’, highlighting the growing shortfall of skilled rail workers to meet future demands.

“Governments can’t leave it to a nebulous training ‘market’ to resolve, because it’s just not working,” Broad said.

“These are national issues requiring a national approach, which reinforces the need for jurisdictions to work together to ensure consistency and alignment between jurisdictions.”

Pacific National boss and Freight on Rail Group chair Dean Dalla Valle also addressed the council, to reiterate his concerns over competitive imbalance between road and rail operators in many key Australian freight corridors.

“Sadly, the business of rail freight has allowed itself to be neglected by government policy makers for decades, resulting in costly inefficiencies infecting Australia’s supply chain,” Dalla Valle told the council.

“Delivering new and improved rail freight infrastructure is sorely needed – but it doesn’t solve every problem. Policies must keep pace with new ideas and technologies.”

While the council didn’t reference the road-rail imbalance in its communique, it did finally agree to the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy and its associated National Action Plan.

“With our freight volumes expected to grow by more than a third by 2040 and online shopping growth at over 20 per cent a year, we need to increase the productivity of our freight system,” federal transport and infrastructure minister Michael McCormack said.

Metro Trains Melbourne workers plan industrial action

The Rail Tram and Bus Union has warned Metro Trains Melbourne of industrial action to begin next week, as negotiations continue towards a new pay agreement for workers.

The RTBU on Monday formally gave notice of planned action, after 99 per cent of relevant members voted in favour of protected action last week.

Next week workers will take part in action like refusing to sell and check myki tickets, refusing to skip stations and run alternate services, refusing to wear uniforms, and bans on things like short arrivals and departures.

“Negotiations are ongoing, and the RTBU will not rest until a fair and reasonable deal is reached for members,” the union said on its Facebook page.

According to multiple reports, the operator – Metro Trains – is offering annual pay rises of 2 per cent as part of the deal, while the RTBU wants 6 per cent pay rises.

“Our members will be making efforts to minimise the impact on the travelling public, sharpening the focus on the company where it hurts most,” RTBU Victoria branch secretary Luba Grigorovitch said last week.

Transport major contributor to QLD infrastructure spend

The Palaszczuk Government has released a state infrastructure report detailing $49.5 billion in infrastructure spending over the next four years, with around one-third dedicated to transport projects.

An update to the State Infrastructure Plan (SIP) for 2019 revealed that the Queensland Government’s underspend for the 201819 year was near zero, resulting in the state’s best performance in 10 years.

The update also stated that the government’s flagship Cross River Rail project will support an average of 1500 jobs each year during construction.

The government is working with a project consortium led by Pulse to help deliver the project.

Cross River Rail will deliver a 5.9-kilometre twin tunnel underground rail line with four new stations running from Dutton Park to Bowen Hills in Brisbane. Other major transport works include the delivery of three new Gold Coast train stations at Pimpama, Helensvale North and Worongary/Merrimac.

This investment is expected to contribute to various infrastructure plans, including “transformative transport and communications projects”. The Palaszczuk Government has been actively reducing its under-expenditure rates since 2015, according to Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick.

“Since 2015, around 207,000 new jobs have been created for Queenslanders, and this updated SIP highlights there are plenty more on the way,” Dick said.

“60 per cent of this year’s infrastructure budget is being invested outside Greater Brisbane, where it will support around 25,500 jobs.”