The Coalition has backed the Adani Carmichael coal mine but there’s debate about assistance for the project, and argument about the jobs it would create in the region.
Resources Minister Matt Canavan argues there’s a role for the government to invest in large-scale infrastructure. He tells The Conversation this mine is only one part of a plan for “opening up the Galilee Basin” to provide investment opportunities, exports, and employment. “This coal is not for Australia, it’s for our region.”
On last week’s Uluru statement calling for an Indigenous body to be enshrined in the Constitution, Canavan says he’s concerned about creating another organisation, especially if it were to be based on different racial definitions.
He says options should be explored for greater recognition of Indigenous people in the political process without “necessarily making changes to the Constitution”.
On the coming Queensland election – with polling close – he says either side’s for the taking. “The Queensland Labor government has had a pretty rough time in the last week but I pick up a lot of frustration in North Quensland and I think they’ve got a lot of work to do to pick up trust.”
Authors: Michelle Grattan, Professorial Fellow, University of Canberra