Monday 25 September 2023
Property Council calls removal of Newcastle Mines Grouting Fund a huge blow for region and the state
The Property Council of Australia has called the removal of the Newcastle Mines Grouting Fund a huge blow not only to the region but the entire state.
Property Council’s Hunter Regional Director Anita Hugo said this was a poor decision that would create great uncertainty and see investments moved elsewhere.
“This fund was established in 2015 from the Hunter Infrastructure and Investment Fund (HIIF) and has since stimulated at least $3b worth of investment in the city. The funding should stay in the Hunter for the purpose it was established for,” Ms Hugo said.
“The fund was established to fix a market failure, which was to remove the uncertainty in the likely cost of mine remediation works to allow development projects to access finance. This is a long-term measure to put investment in the Hunter on a level playing field with other regions.
“Without a Newcastle Mines Grouting Fund, the Hunter will continue to miss out on investment and housing supply that we so desperately need in the region.
“Developers will now face not being able to obtain finance for their projects, projects will potentially no longer be feasible and investment will go elsewhere.”
Ms Hugo said this decision was another blow to the region off the back of budget announcements around the cessation of the Williamtown Special Activation Precinct and news of Regional Grant Funding cuts.
“Let’s not forget the size of this region and how much it contributes to the state economy. A fund of $11m seems like an easy decision to retain when the return on investment racks up into billions of dollars of investment long-term,” she said.
“Industry is committed to working with Government but what is it going to take to get the attention the region and its cities deserve?”