Australia pushes expansion of Pacific workers scheme
Australia's Trade Minister Simon Crean says big projects around
(PHOTO :Australia's Trade Minister Simon Crean says big projects around the region mean there is potential to expand the Pacific workers scheme.) [AAP]
Created: Tue, 03 Feb 2009 15:56:26 GMT-0800
Radio Australia's Linda Mottram speaks to Australian Trade Minister Simon Crean
Australia's Trade Minister Simon Crean wants to see the country's trial use of temporary Pacific workers dramatically expanded across the region.
Mr Crean told Radio Australia that the scheme could be the basis for Pacific-wide training and personnel sharing.
He says major gas developments in Papua New Guinea and other big projects around the region mean there is potential to expand the scheme.
“I would genuinely like to see this turn into a training, development, skill formation type mechanism that had movement of people within the Pacific, not just between Australia and the Pacific,” said Mr Crean.
“[With big projects around the region] this whole issue of integrating skill development, infrastructure building and opening up trading opportunities becomes, we think, quite attractive.”
Mr Crean also says another round of talks on a planned regional free trade mechanism will be held in Adelaide later this month.