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Plan to wake a sleeping giant

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August 12, 2017

Sam Birrell, chief executive, Committee for Greater Shepparton.

Agriculture, tourism, a ‘‘sleeping giant’’ manufacturing sector and aged-care services are among the critical areas highlighted for growth in the Goulburn Valley’s $20million Local Investment Plan.

Federal Member for Murray Damian Drum recently announced applications were open for the Goulburn Valley Regional Jobs and Investment Package, guided by the plan.

The Local Planning Committee, chaired by Committee for Greater Shepparton chief Sam Birrell, had written the plan to help guide decisions on which projects received funding from the $20 million pool, Mr Drum said.

‘‘We created a number of strategic priorities for investment in this region,’’ Mr Birrell said.

‘‘We wanted to make it focused but also make sure many people could apply.’’

Mr Birrell outlined the four areas as being the key to growth in the region and highlighted the existing opportunities for tourism.

‘‘We need to focus on our existing culture,’’ he said.

‘‘Our Indigenous culture is a real advantage and we need to be showcasing this.’’

Mr Birrell noted manufacturing was currently a ‘‘sleeping giant’’ in the region and said aged-care services had the potential for mass growth.

Mr Drum said the investment in the Goulburn Valley aimed to create jobs which would potentially employ locals for years to come in the four highlighted areas as well as other fields.

Federal Regional Development Minister Fiona Nash, who announced the policy during last year’s election campaign, thanked the Local Planning Committee for their work on the investment plan.

Funding will be available across three streams: local infrastructure, business innovation and, skills and training, with the round open for applications until October 19.

For more information and to read more about the Local Investment Plan for Goulburn Valley visit www.business.gov.au/Assistance/Regional-Jobs-and-Investment-Packages

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