With around 5,000 fewer jobs in the ACT since COVID restrictions began in March, the ACT Government is aiming to create an additional 20,000 local jobs by 2025, as part of its Jobs and Economic Recovery Plan.
Prior to the pandemic, employment in the ACT was sitting at 238,300 but has reduced to 233,400 amid COVID-19. The plan aims to reach 250,000 jobs by 2025.
As part of the ACT budget update, the full outline will be released tomorrow (Thursday 27 August), with ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr stating the government had already been working towards the target.
“Already, the ACT Government has outlined significant investments and partnerships that will create local jobs over the coming years,” he said.
“This includes the expansion of Canberra Hospital, the new CIT Woden and Woden transport interchange project, new campuses for UNSW Canberra and the Academy of Interactive Entertainment, active travel projects, road upgrades, as well as new and expanded schools across Canberra.”
The ACT Government also announced a $9 million commitment to the community sector earlier this month to avoid further job losses.
However, Canberra Liberals leader Alistair Coe said the recovery plan lacked ambition.
“Labor is grandstanding on historical trends,” he said.
“After an extraordinarily difficult year of bushfires, hail and pandemic, Canberrans can’t afford more of the same. We can’t afford four more years of a tired old government that fails to get the basics right and only knows how to increase taxes.
“If this government were serious about red tape and supporting jobs, they wouldn’t have imposed the red tape in the first place. There is a better way.”
Mr Barr assured the Canberra community that protecting local jobs was a top priority for the ACT Government.
“The pandemic isn’t over, and the economic impacts will be felt for generations,” he said.
“However, in these uncertain times, ACT Government is delivering the right plan to support Canberra’s economic recovery and protect local jobs.”