South Australian Treasurer Tom Koutsantonis announced the Upper Spencer Gulf an Economic Participation Region for the next four years, under the State Government’s Industry Participation Policy, at the 13th GMUSG conference and trade expo held in Whyalla.

As a result, all new capital work and maintenance contracts to be carried out in the region will require the South Australian Government consider local suppliers wherever possible.

Local businesses will be assisted in the procurement process by a 20 per cent industry participation weighting, improving their chances of winning contracts.

Across the next four years, the State Government has already committed to $145 million of capital works and maintenance in the Upper Spencer Gulf region.

Mr Koutsantonis said this new policy means that more local businesses and workers will contribute to these projects, boosting the local economy.

“We have seen how successful this policy has been since it was implemented in  Northern   Adelaide and now we want to replicate those achievements in the  Upper  Spencer  Gulf,” Mr Koutsantonis said.

“There is a  total of  $145  million of  large-­scale  projects being rolled out in the  Upper  Spencer Gulf in the next four years and we want as many local businesses as possible winning that work.

“There has been a  lift in confidence in the  Upper  Spencer  Gulf since the announcement that the  Aurora solar thermal project will be constructed near  Port  Augusta,  the purchase of  Arrium by  GFG  Alliance,  and  Nyrstar’s  redevelopment in  Port  Pirie.

“By  having  more  local  businesses  involved  in  major  projects  we  can  build  on  those  successes   and  support  local  jobs  and  economic  growth  in  the  region.”

Whyalla Mayor Lyn Breuer has welcomed the State Government’s declaration, stating this announcement was another win for the Whyalla as the region bounces back from uncertain times.

“On the back of the successful sale of Arrium, the announcement of the solar thermal power plant for Pt Augusta and the redevelopment of the Nyrstar plant in Port Pirie, this is another big positive for the region,” Mayor Breuer said.

“This move by the State Government will further boost confidence among our local suppliers that there is a bright future for businesses in the Whyalla region.

“It also reinforces Whyalla as a viable and vibrant economy capable of sustaining, growing and attracting new industries.

“If you were a supplier in Whyalla right now or someone looking for work, I’m confident with this announcement there will be some very good times ahead.”

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