The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, commented on the State Government’s ineptitude, and in particular the revelation by Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne that Tasmania is not getting defence contracts because of State Government idleness.

“Canberra is handing out money but it’s going begging because of the incompetence by the Tasmanian State Government,” Mr Wilkie said.

“It’s simply appalling that the Federal Government has massively increased defence spending and next to none of it is going to Tasmanian manufacturers because, according to Christopher Pyne, the State Government is not effectively coordinating the sector.

“Moreover I’m still to get a commitment from Premier Will Hodgman to aggressively go after UTas STEM funding, even though Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has said clearly that the ball is entirely in the State Government’s court.

“There’s also the matter of all of the money the Federal Government is throwing at infrastructure, and the Prime Minister’s interest in the restoration of passenger rail in Hobart, but still the State Government refuses to ask for the funding.

“There’s a pattern of incompetence here with the State Government. Frankly it needs to stop staring at its navel, get to work and start delivering for the Tasmanian community.”

gA copy of Mr Wilkie’s letter to the Premier about STEM funding is attached.

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