Australia: Future looks sunny

We thank Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson for contributing a column for this edition of ThreeSixty and welcome contributions, story suggestions and ideas from our readers.

I will start and end with one proposition – 'the future is here'.

That is our ethos on the Sunshine Coast and it is only fitting when we are considering not only where our region is at now, but also what lies over the horizon.

'The future is here' embodies not just who we are now, but our value proposition and where we intend to be as we travel over that horizon.

We are bringing the future to us, shaping it, staring down the challenges and creating opportunity as we go.

We are being bold and unpredictable, innovative, creative and entrepreneurial.

We are keeping our businesses and our people connected and at the forefront of the main game. Importantly, our efforts are woven together with a clear, dynamic and achievable vision for the region and plan for our economy.

Our vision for the Sunshine Coast is based on the premise that future cities are healthy, smart and creative. And we believe that future is here on the Sunshine Coast.

Our vision is supported by a transformational agenda strongly anchored in building our new economy, which has been a key objective for our Council since we released our Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) in September 2013.

REDS sets out a bold but achievable plan to build a $33bn economy by 2033, with 100,000 new jobs in high-value industries, 20% of our goods and services exported and household incomes above the Queensland average. We are also making sure our outstanding environmental assets remain just that – outstanding – and a valuable community resource for generations to come.

The Sunshine Coast will be a healthy, smart and creative cityregion that has its own identity and is intimately connected to the world.

I am told constantly by people I meet throughout Australia and across the globe that our vision and our economic development strategy for the Sunshine Coast is realistic, dynamic and achievable. It is a vision that is centred on the future prosperity of our residents, the liveability of our communities and the economic fulfilment that they can (and should) deliver.

We are reshaping the economy, encouraging investment, establishing the drivers of new employment, stimulating confidence in the marketplace and giving confidence to our community about their own futures.

Our Regional Economic Development Strategy is more than just a blueprint. It is being implemented through new precincts, new infrastructure and a more globally focussed business community helping to shape our future.

There really is no better place to be – and there is room for many more to get involved. We are now seeing the results of having a clear, dynamic and achievable plan for our economy in place.

The Sunshine Coast has been independently ranked as the second strongest performing regional economy in Queensland for the last two years and we have been consistently recording some of the highest levels of business confidence of any region in Queensland over that time.

The region is experiencing an average annual economic growth rate of 4.09% – a full percentage point higher than the nation's. Our unemployment rate now sits at 4.7% – lower than for the state of Queensland and at least 50% lower than what it was in 2012 – and what is particularly pleasing is that our youth unemployment has dropped more than 5% in the last 18 months.

In an economic context, we are in a position that is not the 'usual place' for our region. Instead of lagging behind State averages and other regions as we have historically done, we are out in front.

Tourism continues to be a key part of our landscape and last year we achieved our best domestic visitor figures for more than a decade and our international tourists spent more than ever before. We are one of only four Australian regions on the world's Smart 21 communities list for 2017.

The Sunshine Coast is also proving to be a great place for quality exporters with businesses like Youi, Rockcote and Gourmet Gardens basing themselves on the Coast and achieving fantastic results locally and globally.

A key objective of our vision and plan is about providing confidence – both to the marketplace and to our community about their future. Our council understands the importance of putting the right settings in place to build that confidence and maintain momentum.


The Sunshine Coast has also been recognised by Infrastructure Australia as one of five cities – in addition to the State capitals – that will drive the productivity of the Australian economy. To this end, we are pursuing infrastructure solutions that will build an unparalleled economic fabric such as the delivery of Queensland's first international broadband submarine cable.

This is infrastructure that will not only provide the Sunshine Coast with a clear competitive edge for business and industry, but also improve global connectivity for communities across south-east Queensland and the rest of the state.

Investment in new development and infrastructure is on a significant growth trajectory, with building approvals in 2015-2016 at an eight-year high at $1.3 billion worth of construction – more than double what it was in 2012. We have more than $10 billion on public and private projects both delivered or in the pipeline.

Work is already underway on Australia's first truly smart city – our new city centre in Maroochydore. Bernard Salt describes the new CBD as the 'missing link' that will transform the Coast and deliver jobs and growth for decades to come.

From the ground up, the project incorporates the digital infrastructure and solutions that will create a genuinely dynamic business and living environment – from sensors for parking and public lighting to Australia's first underground pneumatic waste collection system. This is a city centre that is a magnet for investment and innovators. Expressions of interest submitted for the initial precincts had a construction value of more than $400 million.


The expansion of the Sunshine Coast Airport is now locked in and on target to be completed by Christmas 2020. All approvals are in place and finance has been secured for the construction of the new runway. Palisade Investment Partners were announced as our new commercial partner in the operation of the airport which welcomed one million passengers over a 12 month period for the first time in 2016.

Pre-construction and early works on the new runway, which will open the Coast to flights from Asia and more Australian destinations, are underway with construction to commence in the second half of this year when final contracts are awarded.


The $1.87 billion Sunshine Coast University Hospital is now accepting patients with more than 4,000 staff on site when fully commissioned. This facility will be a key driver for maintaining the health and wellbeing industry as a leading component of our economy.

Our 15 megawatt Sunshine Coast Council Solar Farm is on track to be operational by mid-2017. Once it is online, council will be offsetting 100% of its electricity consumption with energy from a renewable source – the only government in mainland Australia to be doing so.

Major residential developments such as Aura at Caloundra South and Palmview also provide new communities that will eventually house close to 70,000 people.

All of this is happening as we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the naming of the Sunshine Coast in 2017.

We are celebrating our identity, engaging our community with a spectacular array of events, projects and activities and showcasing our history and future.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


From time to time Mondaq may send you emails promoting Mondaq services including new services. You may opt out of receiving such emails by clicking below.

*** If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of services offered by Mondaq you may opt out by clicking here .


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.