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Supporting Jobs in Regional Tasmania

Thu 17 May 2012

David O'Byrne

Minister for Economic Development

The Tasmanian Government is supporting regional communities to diversify their economies and grow new jobs, through a $950,000 initiative in this year's State Budget.
The Minister for Economic Development, David O'Byrne, said the funding, over two years, has been committed to implement Dr Ernesto Sirolli's successful economic development model in Smithton, Scottsdale and George Town.
"Dr Sirolli has a proven record of helping regional communities adapt to change. Labor Governments share that strong tradition," Mr O'Byrne said.
"Tasmania has an export-oriented economy, and some sectors are being hurt by the exceptionally high Australian dollar, changes in world markets, and the market downturn in the forestry industry.
"As a State Government, we can't influence currency exchange rates, or global market forces.
"But as a Labor Government, we don't just stand back and leave workers and industries at the mercy of changing markets and currencies. We take responsibility, and drive the challenging reforms and transitions needed to secure a stronger future," he said.
Mr O'Byrne acknowledged the Parliamentary Secretary for the North West Economy, Brenton Best, who's been instrumental in bringing Dr Sirolli to Tasmania.
"Mr Best has hosted Dr Sirolli on visits to the three project regions, and helped acquaint him with the strengths and challenges of each community.
"By supporting Dr Sirolli's proven grass-roots program, we're looking to provide practical support to local communities hardest-hit by economic change and transition. The key is providing new skills training, and new industry opportunities.
"By harnessing the passion, determination, intelligence, and resourcefulness of local people, Dr Sirolli is able to produce remarkable results," he said.
The Sirolli Enterprise Facilitation model focuses on developing entrepreneurship by providing advice and facilitating business opportunities.
The Government funding will be used to employ locally-based facilitators in each region, to support enterprise and community development. Support will also include training, advice, and a voluntary management group over the two-year period.
Mr O'Byrne said developing Tasmania's regional economies is a key priority in the Government's Economic Development Plan.
"Intensive work is underway on the three regional economic development plans, which has involved close consultation across Tasmania," Mr O'Byrne said.
"These plans are the next important step in the implementation of the Economic Development Plan and will help build economic prosperity right across the state - not just for the short term, but for generations to come," he said.
Dr Ernesto Sirolli is the Founder of the Sirolli Institute - an international non-profit organisation that teaches community leaders how to establish and maintain Enterprise Facilitation projects in their community.
In 1985, he helped transform Esperance in Western Australia, which had been suffering from major economic change similar to regional communities across Tasmania.
Since then more than 250 communities across the world have engaged Dr Sirolli to help transform the skills and enthusiasm of their population into real business opportunities.

Supporting Jobs in Regional Tasmania