$18 million for Murray-Riverina diversification projects - NSW Nationals

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Member for Cootamundra and Parliamentary Secretary for Southern NSW, Katrina Hodgkinson today welcomed the announcement of the successful projects to help grow and strengthen the rural NSW economy through the Murray-Darling Basin Regional Economic Diversification Program.

Katrina said the NSW Government secured Australian Government funding of up to $32.5 million for economic development projects and diversification initiatives in the State.

“More than 100 funding applications were received, which was a fantastic response. Twenty one successful projects have now been confirmed after rigorous assessment and recommendation by an Independent Panel,” Katrina said.

Katrina said the funding will assist projects to create new jobs and increase the economic output of local and regional economies in the Murray-Riverina.

“The 21 projects receiving almost $18 million in funding come from a diverse range of industries, from manufacturing to aquaculture, cheese-making to grain processing,” Katrina said.

Applicants to receive funding in the Cootamundra electorate include:

  • The Coolamon Cheese Company, which has been awarded funding to purchase and restore the original Coolamon Co-operative building (built in the early 1920s) to house a boutique cheese making facility utilising Riverina milk.  The development will establish an iconic agri-tourism destination, with guided tours and cheese making courses, and is expected to create up to 16 new jobs
  • Agri Australis’ new hazelnut cracking plant at Sandigo, which has been awarded funding to help fund a power upgrade to bring forward the establishment of the drying and cracking facility.  The investment is expected to create up to 27 new jobs and provide wider community and regional benefits through increased power supply
  • Pro Ten, which has been awarded funding to upgrade the electricity supply to the site where the company is building 64 new broiler meat chicken sheds.  The company expects this investment to lead to the creation of up to 14 new jobs.

“Last year I was pleased to announce the planting of a one million hazelnut tree plantation by Agri Australis Pty Ltd, which marked a significant milestone for our primary industries sector and for the Riverina. 

“I am pleased that once again the NSW Government is working closely with Agri-Australis to create more permanent jobs, providing a further boost to both the Narrandera economy and the NSW hazelnut industry.

“The Independent Panel sought out projects that involve the development of sustainable partnerships with government, the private sector or not-for-profit organisations to support joint investment in regional communities,” Katrina said.

The remaining $14 million will be negotiated by the Federal and State Governments in accordance with the program objectives of delivering economic diversification in the Murray Darling Basin. 

For more details on the programme, visit investment.infrastructure.gov.au/

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