The Burdekin’s Economic Development Strategic Advisory Group (EDSAG) has started exploring defence housing and procurement requirements with the aim of drawing more residents and business opportunities to the region.
Group chairman Dan Horan said the Australian Defence Force was an untapped market which had not been considered in the past.
“In the past the focus had been on getting the defence personnel to visit the Burdekin, but now we want to get them to see the Burdekin as an alternative place to live,” he said.
“We have a great region for families with plenty of schools, childcare and casual employment opportunities.
“Combine that with our great rural community spirit and the fact we are only an hour from Townsville and I think the Burdekin is an ideal alternative to city life.”
Burdekin Shire Council Economic Development Manager Adrian Scott said Council also would attend the Defence Expo held in Townsville to promote living in the Burdekin to defence personnel.
“Council has attended these expos in the past, but the aim then was to entice defence personnel and their families to visit the Burdekin,” he said.
“We will attend next year’s Expo and work toward getting families to consider living here.
“We will contact Defence Housing Australia to see what information we need to provide them to see the Burdekin as an alternative home base.
“It would be great if we can capture some of the families who are relocating to Townsville.”
Mr Scott said EDSAG also highlighted the opportunities to boost the region’s economic development through Defence procurement.
“We will be looking into that further and working with local businesses to see if this is something they want to be part of,” he said.
“There are plenty of opportunities to be had in the Defence sector.”