Mon, 20 Aug - 15:08
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Questions Without Notice: Infrastructure

Mr CREWTHER (Dunkley): My question is to the Minister for Urban Infrastructure and Cities. Will the minister update the House on how the government's investment in infrastructure compares with previous periods, including in my state of Victoria and in my electorate of Dunkley, and how this investment flows down to businesses? How would other ideas undermine the success?

I thank the member for Dunkley. It's been terrific to visit the Baxter station with the member for Dunkley on several occasions, because the member for Dunkley is delivering for his electorate. In the 2016 election he promised $4 million for a business case for the Frankston to Baxter rail upgrade, and that is being delivered. But he went further than that, because in the 2018 budget what did the member for Dunkley deliver? He secured a commitment from the Turnbull government for $225 million for the construction of this upgrade, and on 17 July this year the Victorian Leader of the Opposition, Matthew Guy, promised that a Victorian Liberal-National government would match this with a further $225 million. The Baxter train, the Baxter duplication, is leaving the station. It's an increasingly popular train, because on 31 July the member for Grayndler tried to jump on board, with a manoeuvre he performs from time to time, the ACCC—a set of initials well known in public policy. Here it stands for the 'Albo copy and claim credit' manoeuvre. We saw that on 31 July.

But the true credit belongs to the member for Dunkley. He got this train moving, and all around Australia the infrastructure train is moving. The coalition is investing $8 billion a year, compared to $6 billion under the Rudd-Gillard-Rudd government. It is a $75 billion infrastructure investment program over a 10-year period. It's all there in black and white, Mr Speaker, in the ABS's Engineering construction activity, a document I know that you personally are very familiar with—8762.0. For any who may not be familiar with it, the value of public sector transport engineering construction work done in the most recent quarter was $5.9 billion, an all-time high. And where did it stand some 10 years ago, in the first Rudd era? It's now 79.3 per cent higher than during the first Rudd era. The value of public sector transport engineering construction work is $5.9 billion. The Turnbull government has made record spending on infrastructure. That means more jobs for Australians. It means congestion-busting projects all around Australia. It means getting on with the job of delivering outcomes for Australians when it comes to infrastructure.