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NSW Chamber of Commerce welcomes new cabinet

12 April, 2007

Premier Morris Iemma's announcement of a new cabinet has been welcomed by Patricia Forsythe, executive director of the Sydney Chamber of Commerce.

"The new cabinet balances the need for generational change and maintaining experience," Forsythe said.

"I congratulate new cabinet members, including Matt Brown, Linda Burney, Verity Firth, Kevin Greene, Kristina Keneally, Phil Koperberg, Paul Lynch, Nathan Rees and Graham West upon their appointment.

"The NSW Government must use its convincing electoral mandate to be bold and decisive in tackling the big picture issues.

Forsythe said that the Sydney Chamber of Commerce has advocated a number of priorities for the reelected government including:

- Public transport solutions need to be the number one priority of the government. Improving transport flow by fast-trucking integrated ticketing, universal electronic tolling, and strategic infastructure projects such as the North-West rail link. Continue working towards increased service reliability, decreased travel times and easing congestion.

- Privatisations of non-essential or uncompetitive state assets to reinvest the funds into better public services and major infrastructure projects, particularly in public transport. Government should consider privatisation of assets in the areas of waste management, electricity supply, prisons, lotteries and forest plantations.

- Tourism and major events agencies need greater financial support from the state government. Tourism and major events are key components of economic development strategy and criticial to building business confidence.

- Affordable housing in Sydney is being squeezed by a combination of falling building approvals, low vacancy rates and higher interest rates. Business will suffer as a result of their employees being priced out of the Sydney property market. The NSW Government must look at strategies to boost private investment into the property market to increase the supply of affordable housing.

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