The Federal Government has announced that Murray-Darling Basin communities will share in $100 million in funding for economic diversification projects to assist them in transitioning to a ‘more sustainable water future’.


Federal Minister for Regional Australia, Simon Crean, said the Murray-Darling Basin Regional Economic Diversification Program was designed to support the Murray-Darling Basin Plan, which was outlined last week by Federal Minister for the Environment Tony Burke.


"This program will help Basin communities meet the challenge of living in a water-constrained environment by funding innovative, community driven projects that will stimulate employment and regional growth," Mr Crean said.


"By supporting economic diversification in the Murray-Darling Basin region we are enabling communities to build on their local knowledge and local solutions to transform their comparative advantage into competitive advantage.


"This program builds on the existing work Basin communities have been undertaking in partnership with the Federal Government and Regional Development Australia (RDA) committees since last November to identify potential projects that will diversify their skills and economic base.”



Mr Crean said the Federal Government will consult with Basin State governments on the finer details of this program in the coming weeks with a plan to make program funding open for application in early 2013.