Press Releases

Celebrating the big difference small business makes in Heyfield

* * - Friday, September 19, 2014

  • Ryan and Bull encourage Gippslanders to buy local in the lead-up to Support Small Business Day
  • Thousands of gift cards for local small businesses up for grabs
  • Coalition Government supporting small business in regional Victoria

Gippslanders are being encouraged to buy local to support small businesses across the region in the lead-up to Support Small Business Day on Saturday 4 October.

Deputy Premier and The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan today joined The Nationals Member for Gippsland East Tim Bull at CAFÉ 3858 in Heyfield to promote Support Small Business Day.

“Businesses such as Café 3858 in George Street Heyfield, run by Jamie Riley and Zac Stamos, contribute a great deal to our local economies,” Mr Ryan said.

“Jamie, originally from Heyfield, and Zac moved to Heyfield almost four years ago, purchasing the business and bringing with them a slice of Melbourne Café culture.

“They have grown the business which can now seat around 70 people inside, with room for another 40 in their courtyard.

“Their cafe has won several awards including Best Cafe twice and Best Coffee in the Wellington People Choice Awards and they have received numerous positive reviews in newspapers such as the Herald Sun and the Age.

“Jamie and Zac are a great example of our dedicated local small businesses owners investing in our local communities and I encourage locals to continue to support them by purchasing a coffee, cake or and some of the other delicious food they have on offer.”

Mr Bull said it was important locals supported small businesses such as Café 3858.

“Local small businesses employ local staff, which creates local jobs, they purchase local goods and services and reinvest in our local communities,” Mr Bull said.

“Whenever $100 is spent in a local small business, $50 is retained in the local economy.

“Whether it is purchasing the day’s milk for coffee, bread for sandwiches, or dropping into Tryhorn Supermarket for supplies, businesses like Jamie and Zac’s Café 3858 are reinvesting in our local communities and making your dollar go further.

“Local businesses are also the first to give back to their communities by putting up their hands to sponsor local sports clubs, charities or other local initiatives.”

Mr Bull said to further encourage locals to support local small businesses in the lead-up to Support Small Business Day, the Victorian Coalition Government and Bendigo Bank had partnered to give locals the chance to win gift cards that can be spent at participating businesses.

“There are thousands of gift cards be won as part of this initiative which runs throughout the month of September,” Mr Bull said.

“I encourage shoppers and businesses to visit the Support Small Business Day website to see some of the great competitions and initiatives which are on offer.

“Last year more than 4,000 small businesses and consumers participated in the inaugural event and it would be great if we could boost those numbers this year.”

Mr Bull said to participate, small businesses and shoppers across Gippsland could register at

Media contact: Kate Lancaster 0428 921 404

Leading Japanese retailer creates 100 new jobs in Melbourne

* * - Wednesday, September 17, 2014


  • UNIQLO opens its second Melbourne store, creating 100 jobs
  • Confirms Melbourne as the base to grow UNIQLO’s Australian operations
  • Victorian Coalition Government building a better Victoria by attracting businesses from around the globe

Deputy Premier Peter Ryan has welcomed the decision of Japanese clothing retailer UNIQLO to base its growing Australian operations in Melbourne as it opened a second store today.

The retail giant’s new store at Chadstone Shopping Centre was opened this morning, creating 100 jobs. This followed the opening of its first store in Melbourne’s CBD in April.

Mr Ryan said that UNIQLO’s selection of Melbourne for its Australian base was a vote of confidence in the city’s retail sector and in Melbourne as a corporate management location.

“Melbourne is leading the field in attracting companies from around the globe. UNIQLO joins other major global brands taking advantage of the strong and prosperous environment for business we offer,” Mr Ryan said.

“UNIQLO joins companies such as Muji, Williams-Sonoma and H&M in investing in our state and creating jobs in Victoria, enhancing our international reputation as a major retail market.”

The UNIQLO CBD and Chadstone stores join 15 other markets with over 1,400 UNIQLO stores around the world. A third store is set to open in Sydney soon.

“Japan is Victoria’s third largest trading partner, and UNIQLO’s choice of Melbourne for its Australian base is a strong indicator of our excellent relationship with Japan,” Mr Ryan said.

“Demand for retail in Victoria is booming with annual turnover now at $66.5 billion and growing. Earlier this month, the Coalition Government helped to mark a $580 million expansion of Chadstone Shopping Centre that will create thousands of jobs.

“The Coalition Government will continue to help grow the retail industry through our international and business engagement programs. These programs have contributed to investment by international retailers such as UNIQLO, Muji, Zara, Topshop, Williams- Sonoma, Abercrombie & Fitch, and H&M as well as domestic re-investment by Coles, Woolworths, Bunnings and Cotton On.”

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122

Federation Square East Expressions of Interest now open

* * - Monday, September 15, 2014


  • Expressions of Interest now open for Federation Square East site
  • 3.3 hectare project site in central Melbourne to be city’s ‘jewel in the crown’
  • Napthine Government building a better Victoria

Expressions of Interest are now open for Melbourne’s premier Federation Square East development, the Deputy Premier Peter Ryan and Minister for Major Projects David Hodgett announced at an event attended by key industry stakeholders today.

“Today we are releasing a unique opportunity for an outstanding precinct in the heart of our great city,” Mr Ryan said.

“Federation Square East will be a new jewel in Melbourne’s crown and the Victorian Coalition Government is proud to be taking action and releasing this incredible opportunity to the market.

“We are offering a 3.3 hectare site with exceptional building layout and design flexibility to accommodate a mixed use development. We are looking for a great design and exciting, active spaces to create a new destination that is the very essence of Melbourne.

“This will be a major new precinct that takes advantage of the site’s proximity to transport and the very best of Melbourne but also respects and enhances the amenity of the area around it.

“Federation Square East is part of the Victorian Coalition Government’s policy to unlock under-utilised land along the rail corridor such as at E Gate, Flinders Street Station and Richmond Station.

“Together, this suite of projects represents opportunities for billions of dollars in development, the creation of thousands of jobs, and a project pipeline stretching out for decades,” Mr Ryan said.

Mr Hodgett said that the Federation Square East project was entering an exciting new phase.

“Last year we conducted a Request for Industry Submissions which confirmed that there is appetite for the delivery of a viable mixed use precinct and that industry is best placed to come up with innovative, value for money solutions for the site,” Mr Hodgett said.

“The Coalition Government’s expectation of strong benefits for the public is reflected in the project objectives which talk about creating a distinctive destination, an exceptional design, enhancing and connecting the area and balancing financial returns with public outcomes.

“The successful proponent will secure the best development opportunity currently available in Melbourne in terms of location, flexibility, amenity, infrastructure and marketability.

“We have an excellent site in the heart of a prosperous city with a strong property market and I am looking forward to seeing what the innovation and creativity of industry can deliver for Melbourne,” Mr Hodgett said.

Expressions of Interest for Federation Square East close on 11 December 2014. For more information or to register, please visit

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122

Full steam ahead at the Moe rail precinct

* * - Monday, September 15, 2014


Construction of the Moe Civic Hub is now underway, and in 18 months will provide an attractive new space for residents to socialise and study.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss said the works at the Moe Rail Precinct were a great example of all three levels of government working together for the community.

“The $14.3 million Moe Civic Hub will be a great space for residents, with a café, public meeting rooms, a community kitchen, and most importantly, a new home for the public library,” Mr Truss said.

Federal Member for McMillan Russell Broadbent was in Moe today, and joined Deputy Premier of Victoria Peter Ryan and Latrobe City Council Mayor Sharon Gibson to turn the first sod and officially start construction on this exciting project.

Mr Broadbent said the train line currently divided north and south Moe, and the works at the Moe rail precinct would turn that around.

“This project has been a long time coming and I’m thrilled and delighted for all those community members who have lobbied all levels of government. This is a great day for the people of Moe and I congratulate you all on seeing this valuable project through to completion,” Mr Broadbent said.

“By building a swathe of new green spaces and public areas we are linking the town centre with its surroundings, and reconnecting the north and south.”

Mr Ryan said the Victorian Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund had invested $3 million into the $14.3 million first stage of the project.

The new hub will include a state-of-the-art public library, Council service centre, public meeting and research rooms and consulting suites. Public toilets, a café, outdoor spaces and green roof are also planned.

“Projects like this show just how effective a well-managed Regional Growth Fund can be through investing in local infrastructure," Mr Ryan said.

“The Regional Growth Fund is making a real difference in regional communities - investing in community led projects, while strategically driving jobs and investment.

“In the Latrobe region alone, the Regional Growth Fund is investing $20.5 million into 73 projects, leveraging $72.63 million in total investment.

“The Regional Growth Fund invested $1.1 million in the $1.55 million Moe Outdoor Pool Refurbishment and $1.5 million in the $2 million Growing Aerospace Manufacturing at Latrobe Regional Airport.”  

Cr Gibson said the Moe Civic Hub would turn what were the Moe Railway Station yards into an inviting space for residents.
“This project is all about innovation and making otherwise unused spaces into recreational spaces. Even the roof of the Civic Hub will become a green space, creating a welcoming environment for people to visit while also improving the building’s thermal efficiency.

I would like to thank the State and Federal governments for making the project a reality.”

The Moe Civic Hub is jointly funded, with the Australian Government committing $7.5 million, the Victorian Government $3.95 million and Latrobe City Council $2.85 million.

Media contact: Les White 0409 805 122

Bright future for the Port of Portland

* * - Thursday, September 11, 2014


  • Victorian Coalition Government investment helps Portland attract cruise vessels
  • Cruise trade delivers significant benefits to Portland and the south-west region
  • Port to benefit from Coalition Government’s Murray Basin Rail Project

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan today visited the Port of Portland to inspect the completed $486,000 Cruise Vessel Terminal Infrastructure Project, made possible by an almost $250,000 investment from the Victorian Coalition Government’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

Mr Ryan said the project delivered infrastructure upgrades to the S.L. Patterson berth located at the Lee Breakwater, increasing accessibility for all vessels and providing adequate docking facilities for cruise ships.

Mr Ryan said the Port of Portland hosted its first cruise ship earlier this year, with the German MS Europa docking in March.

“The infrastructure upgrades have been a winner for the community of Portland, with the port now able to attract cruise ships which bring a range of benefits to the region,” Mr Ryan said.

“More than 130 passengers from the MS Europa spent the day in Portland, and with each passenger spending on average $200 it proved to be a significant economic earner for the community and resulted in one of the strongest trading days for local businesses.

“The Port of Portland now expects to attract on average 14 cruise vessels per year, providing a significant and ongoing boost for local businesses and tourism operators.

“Already seven cruise ship visits to Portland by three companies have been confirmed for the next financial year, which is fantastic news for the region.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government’s recently announced $220 million Murray Basin Rail Project would also provide significant benefits for the Port of Portland, ensuring a bright future for the port and the region more broadly.

“The Liberal Nationals Coalition Government’s transformational Murray Basin Rail Project will improve linkages between Portland, Mildura and north western Victoria,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Port of Portland has indicated that the Coalition Government’s visionary investment will pay dividends for the next 30 to 40 years, with the port’s underutilised rail yard ready to receive up to 1 million tonnes of grain.

“The port currently employs 80 staff, however 400-500 people can be working on the docks at any one time.

“If an additional 1 million tonnes of grain can be sent through the Port or Portland many new local jobs will be created as a result.

“Only the Coalition Government is committed to delivering the Murray Basin Rail Project, with the Daniel Andrews-led Labor Party remaining silent, preferring instead to direct resources into the removal of level crossings in safe Labor-held city seats if returned to government.”

Following his visit to the Port of Portland, Mr Ryan met with the Professional Divers Group in Portland.

Mr Ryan said the company, which has operated for the past 30 years and employs around 60 staff, continues to grow in strength and diversity, with an emphasis on safety and high-end services, including underwater construction and demolition, maintenance, survey, salvage and training.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 547 731

$2.2 million Portland Airport redevelopment complete

* * - Thursday, September 11, 2014


  • Portland Airport’s $2.2 million upgrade complete
  • Regional gateway for domestic business and leisure travel
  • Victorian Coalition Government building a better regional Victoria

Portland Airport, which is one of just three regional airports to support a regular public transit service, has undergone a $2.2 million redevelopment, delivering a safe, modern and reliable airport for the community and local aviation industry.

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan visited Portland today to open the $2.2 million redevelopment, made possible with a $1.43 million investment from the Victorian Coalition Government, including $80,000 from the Coalition’s $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

Mr Ryan said the $2.2 million project involved:

  • Construction of taxiways, aircraft parking and doubling the size of the main hangar;
  • Construction of an administration office in the main hangar;
  • A conference/meeting room extension to the Airport Terminal;
  • A new administration and crew area office extension to the Airport Terminal; and New
  • AvGas storage and distribution facilities at the airport.

“Thanks to this significant Victorian Government investment, Portland now has a modern airport that offers a high level of service to its many user groups,” Mr Ryan said.

“Portland Airport is vitally important to the local community and economy, servicing the local forestry sector, the growing mineral and resource sector as well as other major industries such as Portland’s aluminium smelter.

“It is also a key gateway for tourism into not only Portland but the south west region more broadly.

“This investment will support these key sectors of the local economy, while enabling the airport to attract new services, including the potential for pilot training in partnership with education providers and other airports within the Greater Green Triangle area.”

Mr Ryan said the Coalition Government was committed to delivering important upgrades at the Portland Airport, with Premier Denis Napthine recently announcing almost $700,000 from the Regional Aviation Fund for a major lighting and security upgrade project.

Mr Ryan also paid tribute to Dr Napthine who had been a strong advocate for the redevelopment of Portland Airport and in securing the lighting and security upgrade.

Mr Ryan also thanked the Glenelg Shire Council which remained strongly committed to the project despite challenging economic conditions.

“Glenelg Shire Council invested more than $800,000 to support this important local project, stepping in to complete the relocation of the AvGas facilities when other investors walked away,” Mr Ryan said.

“Both the council and the Victorian Coalition Government can see the airport playing a leading role in the economic development of the south west region and we are both extremely proud of the work which has been undertaken here.”

Mr Ryan said supporting initiatives such as the redevelopment of the Portland Airport was a key reason why The Nationals, working as part of a Coalition Government, fought to secure the $1 billion Regional Growth Fund.

“Since it was established in 2011, the Regional Growth Fund has delivered more than $440 million in investment across regional and rural Victoria, generating over $1.8 billion of total leveraged investment across 1,600 projects.

“Here in the Glenelg Shire, the Regional Growth Fund has invested more than $4 million to support 43 local projects, leveraging well over $6 million in leveraged investment.

“This includes $243,00 for the $486,000 Portland Cruise Vessel Terminal, $300,000 for the Bentick and Julia Streets Roundabout and $241,000 for the $250,000 Bridgewater Foreshore Development.

“Without the support of the Regional Growth Fund completing many of these key local projects would not have been possible,” Mr Ryan said.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 547 731

Redeveloped Marysville Golf Club swings into action

* * - Monday, September 08, 2014


  • $2 million refurbished Golf and Bowls Club set to boost Marysville economy
  • Victorian Coalition Government invested $1.45 million towards project
  • Victorian Coalition Government continues to support fire affected communities

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan today officially opened the redeveloped Marysville Community Golf and Bowls Club, completed with a $1.45 million investment from the Victorian Coalition Government.

Mr Ryan, who was joined by Member for Seymour Cindy McLeish, said the completion of the $2 million redevelopment was a positive milestone for the Marysville community following the devastating 2009 bushfires.

“The Marysville Community Golf and Bowls Club was one of the few buildings that survived the tragic events of Black Saturday, and as a result became a key community meeting point in the months following the fires,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Coalition Government was keen to support the redevelopment of this important local facility as part of our commitment to supporting the town during its recovery.

“The redevelopment has created a truly wonderful facility that the whole community can be proud of.

“These new facilities will encourage more people to visit Marysville, particularly those keen to play a round of golf on this magnificent course.”

Mr Ryan said the $2 million restoration included construction of a new a function room that accommodated up to 300 people, a new members’ lounge, meeting room, bar, lobby, kitchen, restrooms, outdoor timber deck, landscaping and a remodelled pro shop.

Mr Ryan said more than 50 construction jobs were created during the redevelopment, and a further five new full-time jobs had been created at the club on an ongoing basis.

Ms McLeish paid tribute to the Marysville and Triangle Community Bushfire Relief Fund for its $523,213 contribution to the project, as well as the Marysville Community Golf and Bowls Club which contributed the balance of the funding.

“The overall construction has created a new-look club that, along with other projects such as the $28 million Vibe Hotel & Conference Centre, will stimulate revenue and bring a much-needed economic boost to the Marysville area,” Ms McLeish said.

“Encouraging economic activity in Marysville and other bushfire affected communities has been a key focus of the Coalition Government as part of the ongoing recovery efforts.”

Following the official opening of the Marysville Community Golf and Bowls Club, Mr Ryan joined Club President Ken Whittingham, along with other members and guests, for a round of golf.

“The course certainly played a lot better than I did,” Mr Ryan said after his round.

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 547 731

Victorian Coalition Government step in to save LLENs

* * - Wednesday, September 03, 2014

• Funding for LLENs more than triples to $8 million in 2015
• Victorian Coalition Government steps in to save LLENS after Commonwealth pulls its funding
• Victorian Coalition Government building better education for all

Deputy Premier and The Nationals Member for Gippsland South Peter Ryan announced today that Victorian Coalition Government funding for Local Learning and Employment Networks (LLENs) would be tripled in 2015.

Mr Ryan said the Victorian Coalition Government’s funding for LLENs would be increased by $5.7 million in 2015, bringing its total commitment to $8 million next year.

Mr Ryan said the Victorian Coalition Government had stepped in to save LLENs following the Commonwealth Government’s decision to discontinue funding for the program from next year.

“Just as the Victorian Coalition Government stepped in with $5.1 million to save the Workplace Learning Coordinators program in 2013, we have again stepped in to save LLENs after the Commonwealth cut its funding” Mr Ryan said.

“Over the past few months we have been working with the LLENs to ensure they have funding certainty for next year.

“While I am disappointed that the Commonwealth has chosen to cut its funding for this program in 2015, I am proud that the Victorian Coalition Government has stepped into to ensure the continuation of LLENs.”

Mr Ryan said LLENs support students between the ages of 10 and 19 to improve school and workforce participation, engagement, attainment and transition outcomes.

“LLENs play an important role for many young people living in rural and regional communities such as Gippsland, Mr Ryan said.

“Young people, particularly those who are vulnerable and disengaged from school, will benefit from the Victorian Coalition Government’s commitment to the LLEN program in 2015.”

Media contact: Kate Lancaster 0428 921 404 

Deputy Premier visits ATC ahead of IMARC

* * - Tuesday, August 26, 2014


  • Manufacturing and mining make significant contribution to Bendigo economy
  • Local success story ATC supplies turntables to Asia, Europe and Middle East
  • IMARC in Melbourne joins the ‘Grand Slam’ of global mining conferences

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan visited Australian Turntable Company (ATC) in Kangaroo Flat today to highlight the significant contribution the manufacturing and mining industries make to the region.

Mr Ryan also used his visit to promote the upcoming the 2014 International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) to be held in Melbourne.

Mr Ryan, who was joined by Liberal candidate for Bendigo West Michael Langdon, said ATC was a strong example of mining investment flowing through to regional communities such as Bendigo.

“From humble beginnings in 1987, ATC has grown to become one of the world’s leading designers and manufacturers of turntables and revolving floors,” Mr Ryan said.

“This includes commercial truck turntables for loading docks and construction sites, residential vehicle driveway turntables, revolving restaurants and showroom display turntables.

“ATC exports to the Middle East, Asia and Europe, with its most notable achievement being the manufacture and installation of the world’s largest revolving restaurant at Milad Tower in Tehran, Iran.

“More recently ATC has begun servicing the mining industry, delivering a second 100 ton capacity turntable to Rio Tinto earlier this year.

“ATC will continue to develop new ways to service the mining industry through the use of turntables, ensuring the company has a bright future here in Bendigo.”

Mr Langdon said Bendigo was home to many other leading mining equipment, technology and services (METS) companies.

“The manufacturing and mining industries are the largest economic contributor to Bendigo’s economy, with an annual economic output of $2.8 billion,” Mr Langdon said.

“It employs more than 1,000 people locally with many national and international companies based here including Bendigo Engineering, Deepcore Drilling, Gordon Brothers Industries, Hofmann Engineering, Keech Australia, Mancala Mine, Quarry and Mining Engineering, UME Australia, Universal Manufacturing Australia and many others.”

Mr Ryan encouraged local METS companies to register for IMARC, which he said was among the ‘Grand Slam’ of global mining conferences.

Mr Ryan said the first IMARC would be held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from 22-26 September and had secured almost 200 speakers and more than 1,000 delegates from across the local and global mining and resources sector.

“IMARC sits alongside the world’s other major mining conferences including PDAC in Canada, Expomin in Chile, Mining INDABA in South Africa and China Mining,” Mr Ryan said

“I strongly encourage Victorian companies that are directly involved in mining, are current suppliers to the mining industry, or those interested in becoming mining suppliers, to attend this high profile international event.

“IMARC will provide an ideal platform for Victorian businesses to gain new market exposure and develop new relationships in the mining sector.

“For local companies like Australian Turntable Company, it will help them raise their profile and attract new investment.”

Mr Ryan announced today that the Victorian Coalition Government was offering Victorian companies a special deal to attend IMARC, with free entry to the exhibition hall and a discounted rate of $495 for a full day conference pass to the Technical Stream.

Mr Ryan said local companies could find out more by visiting

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 547 731

Huntly turns on the natural gas

* * - Tuesday, August 26, 2014


  • Deputy Premier celebrates completion of works to connect Huntly to natural gas
  •  580 Huntly households and businesses can now access piped natural gas
  • Victorian Coalition Government delivering its promise to connect more regional communities to natural gas

Huntly today became the first town to be connected to Victoria’s natural gas network under the Victorian Coalition Government’s $100 million Energy for the Regions Program.

Deputy Premier and Leader of The Nationals Peter Ryan, who was joined by the Liberal candidate for Bendigo East Greg Bickley, visited Jan and Dale Johnson’s home in Huntly to celebrate the historic connection.

 Mr Ryan said Jan and Dale’s home was one of more than 180 to have been connected to natural gas as part of a $4.5 million joint investment by the Coalition Government and AusNet Services, with more than 100 additional homes expected to be connected soon.

"I am proud that the Coalition Government’s decision to connect Huntly to natural gas is already making a difference to the lives of locals such as Jan and Dale," Mr Ryan said.

"Jan and Dale and many other Huntly residents now have access to a dependable energy source that is cheaper for them and better for the environment.

"This investment means Huntly is no longer the poor cousin to Bendigo when it comes to natural gas, enabling the community to compete for new residents, new industry and new investment."

Mr Bickley welcomed the $4.5 million investment, which included $2.58 million from the Coalition Government, and said it would provide 580 homes and businesses in Huntly with the opportunity to connect to natural gas.

Mr Bickley said the roll-out involved the installation of 3.5kms of supply pipeline and more than 13kms of reticulation pipeline, which was delivered on time and on budget with minimal disruption to the local community.

Mr Bickley said the investment opened the door for gas to be connected to the new 'Viewpoint Huntly' estate on Sawmill Road, with a separate agreement having been reached to supply and connect 350 additional homes to natural gas, over and above the 580 connections in Huntly.

“This additional extension, which would not have occurred without the Coalition Government’s initial investment, is a great outcome for the community and for those looking to invest at the new 'Viewpoint Huntly' estate,” Mr Bickley said.

Mr Ryan said Labor’s regional spokesperson Jacinta Allan would be eating her words today after describing the Energy for The Regions Program as a ‘monstrous hoax’.

“I am here today in Huntly to say that the only monstrous hoax is Jacinta Allan’s pitiful and misinformed scare campaign,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Coalition Government has done in three years what Labor couldn’t do in its 11 years in office and that is deliver piped natural gas to the people of Huntly.”

Mr Ryan said while Ms Allan had been spreading uncertainty in an attempt to scare off business and investment in regional Victoria, the Coalition Government had reached agreements to supply gas to Huntly, Avoca, Bannockburn, Winchelsea, Wandong-Heathcote Junction, Koo Wee Rup, Mildura and Warburton.

“We are finalising negotiations for an $85 million tender to supply the remaining priority towns and communities along the Murray River with compressed or liquefied natural gas,” Mr Ryan said.

“We are delivering on our commitment to roll out natural gas, which is a cheaper and cleaner source of energy that will lower household costs.

“It is about time Jacinta Allan and Labor admitted they were wrong and apologised to regional Victorians for their baseless scaremongering.”

Media contact: Ben Bulmer 0437 547 731


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