Bill's Media Releases


Labor will establish a Tasmania Taskforce to urgently address the challenges facing the Tasmanian economy and Tasmanians.


The Tasmanian economy is in flux following recent job losses, as well as a rising unemployment rate, particularly youth unemployment, and growing disadvantage for low-income families.


The task of revitalising Tasmania’s economy, facilitating a transition to new, growing industries and importantly, lifting the education and skills of Tasmanians is now urgent.


These challenges have been compounded by decisions of the Liberal Government in the last Budget, including almost $2 billion cut from Tasmanian schools and hospitals.


The Liberal Government’s attack on higher education has disproportionately affected the University of Tasmania, putting the Burnie and Launceston campuses at risk of closure.


And despite his many promises, Tony Abbott has failed to deliver a clear, consistent plan to boost the Tasmanian economy and support jobs.


The Tasmania Taskforce will consult widely including with local communities, industries, chambers of commerce, regional development organisations, education providers, unions and economists in the coming months to develop a comprehensive understanding of the key priorities for the creation of a sustainable, prosperous future for Tasmania.


Labor’s Tasmania Taskforce will focus on four key areas:


  1. Economic development – supporting Tasmania to transition to new and growing industries including but not limited to renewable energy, boutique food production, aquaculture and eco and cultural tourism;

  2. Employment – growing employment throughout the state, including high-skill jobs of the future with a particular focus on working with business and the community to improve opportunities in areas of high youth unemployment;

  3. Education – expanding the education and skills of Tasmanians; improving attainment rates to ensure the next generation have the skills to drive the new economy, as well as provide retraining and upskilling opportunities for experienced workers seeking to transition; and

  4. Promoting Tasmania – building upon the clean, green, safe and premium reputation of Tasmanian goods and services.


The Tasmania Taskforce will be established by Shadow Minister for Regional Development and Local Government, Shadow Minister for Employment Services, and Member for Franklin, the Hon. Julie Collins MP. The Taskforce will comprise of Tasmanian Labor Senators, the Leader of the Opposition in Tasmania, Bryan Green MP and a representative of Local Government.


Labor’s Tasmania Taskforce will report by October this year, bringing forward recommendations informed by its extensive consultations with experts and throughout Tasmania.


FRIDAY, 8 MAY 2015