Unemployment in NSW has fallen to a four-year low, with ABS figures once again confirming that the State has the strongest jobs market in the nation. The NSW unemployment rate is the lowest in the nation, falling 0.1 per cent to 4.9 per cent in September. The result is well below the national result of 5.6 per cent. Excluding NSW, the unemployment rate for the rest of Australia is 5.9 per cent. To achieve a four-year low is yet another exceptional result for the State’s strong jobs market. In fact, it has been almost 15 years since NSW’s unemployment rate has been this far below the rest of Australia. The official data, released today, showed that for 16 consecutive months NSW has had the lowest unemployment rate of all states. The state with the second lowest unemployment result was Victoria, where the rate rose to 5.7 per cent. In the 12 months to September 68,900 new jobs were added in NSW, with employment growing at 1.8 per cent – faster than the national rate of 1.4 per cent. The NSW Government is investing in quality infrastructure and services and this is continuing to deliver strong results for jobs and our economy. NSW has the number one economy in the nation and that means great opportunities for employment and growth right across the State.

The NSW Government has achieved another outstanding result in its infrastructure program, entering into a binding agreement with an all-Australian consortium for the partial lease of Ausgrid. The transaction will deliver $16.2 billion to the State and will help fund critical infrastructure projects as part of our $20 billion Rebuilding NSW plan. This follows our successful $10.258 billion lease of TransGrid. We promised at the election, our poles and wires transactions are unlocking billions of dollars to fund new schools, hospitals, public transport and roads that will make a real difference to peoples’ lives. The successful Unsolicited Proposal was by all-Australian firms, IFM Investors and AustralianSuper and was thoroughly assessed by government agencies and financial advisers, within the strictest probity requirements. As this is an all-Australian consortium, there is no need to seek approval from the Foreign Investment Review Board. IFM Investors is a global fund manager owned by 29 Australian superannuation funds. AustralianSuper manages assets on behalf of more than two million members. One in 6 working Australians is a member of AustralianSuper. The Price Commissioner, Professor Allan Fels AO, has signed off on the Ausgrid transaction. The consortium has also signed the Electricity Prices Guarantee which confirms total Ausgrid network charges will be lower in 2019 than they were in 2014. The NSW Government will retain 49.6 per cent of Ausgrid and will have an ongoing role as the lessor of the business and an investor.

50th Wedding Anniversary Mr Gordon and Mrs Janice Watts; Mr Nicholas and Mrs Verlie Behlevanas 90th Birthday -Mr Bruno Kannamuller

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