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Transcript - 23434

Infrastructure Plan for Western Sydney

Photo of Abbott, Tony

Abbott, Tony

Period of Service: 18/09/2013 to 15/09/2015

More information about Abbott, Tony on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 16/04/2014

Release Type:

Transcript ID: 23434

The talk is over. The decision has been made.  Sydney is getting an airport at Badgerys Creek.

This decision will create jobs and encourage investment in Western Sydney for the next half century.

A second airport is an economic imperative for Sydney and for Australia.

Sydney Airport is near capacity.  When capacity is reached, it will impact Australia’s ability to grow – effectively placing limits on our country’s prosperity.  The existing Kingsford Smith Airport accounts for 40 per cent of international arrivals and departures and 50 per cent of international air freight each year.

Building additional airport capacity in Australia’s largest city is vital. If no action is taken, Australia would lose out on tens of thousands of additional jobs and $34 billion in economic capacity by 2060.

One in eleven Australians live in Western Sydney and, over the next 20 years, its population is expected to increase by 50 per cent from 2 million to 3 million.  It needs a major airport and it is big enough to sustain one.

After fifty years of talk, it’s time for action.

The new airport in Badgerys Creek will be a magnet for jobs – generating 4,000 new jobs during construction, rising to 35,000 jobs by 2035, increasing to 60,000 by 2060.  Around the world, we have seen that other businesses seek to locate themselves near the airport.  Transport providers, logistics companies, parcel services, caterers, hotels and businesses needing close access locate themselves in the vicinity of an airport.

Currently over 200,000 people in Western Sydney have to leave the region every day to work.  By creating more jobs in Western Sydney, pressure is reduced on the entire Sydney road system.

While 1,700 hectares has been put aside for the airport site, it is part of 10,000 hectares zoned for commercial and industrial development that will, in time, become another economic lung for Western Sydney.

This is the largest project ever undertaken in Western Sydney with the new airport expected to see its first flight in the mid-2020s.

Building a new airport also means major road and transport upgrades in Western Sydney.  The Government has already committed $1.5 billion towards WestConnex and will be making announcements in the coming days about the infrastructure that will accompany the airport.

Road and transport links must be ready and operating long before the airport is complete.  Roads first; airport second is our approach.  The people of Western Sydney are smarting from Bob Carr’s failed policies that saw population first; roads second.  We will get the roads completed first so that the airport can operate from day one.

The Daily Telegraph through its Fair Go for Western Sydney campaign has consistently argued for more infrastructure in Western Sydney.  I thank the Telegraph for its campaign to deliver more jobs in Western Sydney.

Building better infrastructure is part of the Government’s Economic Action Strategy that will deliver a strong and prosperous economy.  In Western Sydney, this will mean bulldozers on the ground and cranes in the air to build the airport, transport infrastructure and roads of the 21st century. 

Working closely with Barry O’Farrell and his Government, we will ensure that Western Sydney gets modern infrastructure to create jobs, improve productivity and means that families, spend less time in traffic.

The Western Sydney Airport Alliance, made up of local business chambers, trade unions and local councils, has demonstrated there is broad based support for a second airport at Badgerys Creek.

This is the right decision for Sydney and for Australia.  We can’t let Sydney Airport hit capacity.   To do so is to put a handbrake on jobs, tourism and exports.

A new airport in Western Sydney with supporting infrastructure that complements the existing airport at Kingsford Smith, will make life better in Sydney and the economy stronger.  That’s why the government is making this decision.  It’s one that should have been made years ago.

16 April 2014

Transcript - 23434