THOUSANDS of migrants will be forced to spend their first five years outside some of Australia’s biggest cities in a new plan by the federal government.
Minister for cities, urban infrastructure and population Alan Tudge said on national television Tuesday morning that Australia’s population growth had outstripped expectations.
While more details are expected during his speech later today, he said there had been higher-than-expected population growth in Sydney and Melbourne, but smaller growth in other areas.
“There’s been small growth in the regions and indeed they’re often crying out for people,” Mr Tudge said.
He said having some migrants live in regional areas for their first five years in Australia would help take pressure of the larger cities.
Mr Tudge disputed the fact it was more difficult to get jobs in regional areas.
All of our population growth has been well above what the forecasts where and then on top of that we didn’t have the infrastructure built really even for the expected population growth, let alone the actual population growth that we saw.
“It depends where you are, here we’re not just talking about the regional areas but also some of the smaller states like South Australia and Tasmania,” he said.
“There’s some parts of regional Australia that are desperately crying out for workers.”
“The jobs are out there and we want to support the economic growth.”
Mr Tudge said the government was “in a bit of a catch up phase”.
“All of our population growth has been well above what the forecasts where and then on top of that we didn’t have the infrastructure built really even for the expected population growth, let alone the actual population growth that we saw,” he said.
“My overall message, and what I’m going to be outlining in a speech today is that we need to continue to build that infrastructure, ideally front of the population growth; second we need a better distribution of that population growth; and thirdly we actually need better planning so that we can more closely marry the growth with infrastructure expenditure.”