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Foundation deserves corporate support

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S ) National Party of Australia - ^ / Federal Secretariat

Foundation deserves corporate support

The new rural foundation announced by the Deputy Prime Minister, John Anderson, deserved solid support from the corporate sector, the Natiohar Party's Federal - President, Helen Dickie, said today. v

Mrs Dickie said it was clear there was a great determination among delegates to the Regional Australia Summit in Canberra to face the challenges of revitalising country and regional Australia with positive new ideas.

“There is obviously a wealth of information and ideas coming together at this Summit and an over-riding view that the answer to the revolutions we have seen in areas including communications, competition policy, deregulation, privatision and globalisation is to harness the new opportunities that they are creating.

“An important way of achieving this can be through the rural foundation - a concept which John Anderson has successfully argued through Cabinet, securing a $10 million input from the Commonwealth, as well as tax deductibility for donations.

“To be really successful, it must be strongly supported by the corporate sector, so a , substantial pool of financial resources is built up and devoted to new business establishment in the bush.

“Many of the gains the corporate sector has won through sound economic management and deregulation have impacted adversely on smaller country communities — for instance through bank closures, small business closures and job losses.

“There is an opportunity for the nation's corporate leaders, through this foundation, to contribute directly to offsetting these impacts, and helping develop new opportunities utilising the latest in information and other technologies.

“A clear priority of the Summit is to find solutions to the problems of country communities at the local level - from a bottoms up, rather than a tops down approach. I'm sure this is right. Local people want input into the future direction of their communities. They don’t want perceived answers forced on them from bureaucrats on high.

Mrs Dickie said already the Regional Summit had proved its worth.

“This was John Anderson's brainchild and he deserve full credit for pulling it together. I hope he receives continuing support from his Government colleagues to ensure the final outcomes of the Summit can be brought to reality as quickly as possible,” Mrs Dickie said.

October 29 1999 Contact Helen Dickie 03 5885 2641

JOHN McEWEH HOUSE National Circuit, BARTON ACT 2600 PO Box E265 KINGSTON ACT 2604

Telephone: 02/62733822 Facsimile: 02/62731745