WHILE some may feel Perth and its northern suburbs are isolated, Pearce MHR Christian Porter says it’s where the action is.
The Federal MP was guest speaker at a Wanneroo Business Association breakfast at Portofino’s Restaurant and Function Centre in Mindarie on Wednesday.
“At the end of a sitting week, we cannot wait to get on a flight to come back home,” Mr Porter said.
“Canberra is just not the real world – I live in the real world in Yanchep. The action in Australia is occurring in places like this.”
Mr Porter praised the business group, which recently celebrated reaching a 300-member milestone, for its expansion and advocacy goals.
“You are the drivers of employment; you are the drivers of economic growth,” he said.
“Never feel that you are isolated from the main game – you are the main game.”
Mr Porter said when he moved to Yanchep in late 2012, there was no shopping centre.
He said Federal Government decisions, such as the Free Trade Agreements with China, had effects locally and shared a story about Chinese visitors offering to export a third of an olive oil producer’s stock after sampling it.
“We’ve got a fantastic future in those markets,” he said.
“It’s not just the agricultural exports that are offering us amazing opportunities.”
Mr Porter also talked about government debt and the danger of borrowing now but leaving the burden of repaying that money to future taxpayers, who are children now.
Prompted by Wanneroo Mayor Tracey Roberts, he also talked about Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s ‘value capture’ funding model for major infrastructure and support for major landowners to partly fund projects such as rail to Yanchep because they would benefit.
“If you build a rail station, land around the rail station becomes more valuable,” he said.
Mr Porter said the private-public partnership model was the only way rail would be delivered earlier than currently proposed, and discussions with developers and government were ongoing.
About 60 people attended the August 17 breakfast, where WBA vice-president Peter Armstrong outlined the business advisory program and gold membership option.
The next event will be a sundowner at Cafe Avellino in the Drovers Place shopping centre on August 25 from 5pm.