KEY cattle routes in the top end will be upgraded as part of the Australian Government's $100 million investment in northern Australian Beef Roads.
Today Minister for Infrastructure and Transport announced the Northern Territory's Barkly Stock Route and Tablelands Highway will be upgraded to support the transport of livestock.
The Government's $30 million investment, under the Turnbull-Joyce Government's Northern Australia Beef Roads Programme, will support the Northern Territory's cattle industry, which plays a crucial role in the Territory's economy.
"The $10 million commitment to the Barkly Stock Route project will upgrade a section of the route which will reduce closures and restrictions, while also improving safety," Mr Chester said.
"The $20 million commitment to the Tablelands Highway project will involve upgrading selected sections of the Highway, making every trip safer and improving accessibility for local and regional commuters."
The Northern Territory Government is contributing 20% toward the projects.
In Queensland $56 million will be invested.
The government is supporting the Queensland cattle industry by undertaking targeted upgrades on roads essential to transportation of cattle, Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester said.
"The Australian Government has committed over $56 million toward targeted road upgrades and improvements, providing a welcome boost to the Queensland cattle industry," Mr Chester said.
"This commitment will enable 15 projects to be delivered including $20 million towards the upgrade of the road between Gracemere saleyards and the Rockhampton abattoirs.
"Other projects range from sealing and road widening works that will help boost industry productivity, to increasing road reliability and safety on key routes in the cattle supply chain."
- Rockhampton Road Network - Road Train Access
- Burke Developmental Road - Chillagoe to Almaden
- Clermont - Alpha Road
- Ootann Rd - Almaden to Kennedy Hwy (Gunnawarra)
- Gregory Developmental Road (South of Charter Towers)
- Richmond-Croydon Road
- Cloncurry - Dajarra Road
- Diamantina Developmental Road (Boulia - Dajarra)
- Richmond - Winton Road.
The Queensland government is investing $19.19 million towards the upgrades.
A $12.51 million package was announced for Western Australia to undertake a road widening and realignment upgrade on the Great Northern Highway, between the Ord River and Turkey Creek.
Western Australian Government is contributing 20 per cent of the Great Northern Highway project in partnership with the Australian Government.
"The Beef Roads Programme recognises moving cattle from the farm gate to market involves some of the longest and most challenging land transport distances of any industry, anywhere in the world," Mr Chester said.
"I'd like to thank David Crombie, Director of Australian Agricultural Company, and Troy Setter, CEO of Consolidated Pastoral Company Pty Ltd, who played a key leadership role in facilitating northern beef industry input into identifying priority road sections for upgrade."
"These proposals were then modelled by the CSIRO's TraNSIT model to help identify, which projects delivered the greatest benefits to the northern Australian beef industry."
Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matthew Canavan said the Australian Government was committed to realising the potential of northern Australia.
"The beef industry is the big winner from these investments. With beef prices at record levels, a bigger beef industry is a big part of developing Northern Australia," Senator Canavan said.
"The upgraded roads will also provide benefits to all road users, including other agricultural industries and the freight sector more broadly."
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