State and Federal Liberal Governments

Mr PEDERICK (Hammond) (14:10): My question is to the Premier. Can the Premier update the house on the benefits of the state and federal governments working together?

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL (Dunstan—Premier) (14:10): Thank you very much, sir.

Mr Odenwalder interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The member for Elizabeth is called to order.

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL: Can I just say that it is with great pleasure that I outline the great advantages to our state of having a good quality working relationship with the federal government. Whilst we on this side rejoice with that, we note the deriding comments of those opposite about working together, because what we had for a very long period of time were fake fights with Canberra that never delivered for our state.

What we are now seeing is a steady stream of great benefit to our state starting with, of course, the wonderful contribution that the federal government is now making to South Australia in terms of infrastructure. We were very proud to hand down our most recent budget, which shows $11.9 billion worth of future infrastructure investment here in South Australia. That is absolutely fantastic and could not be delivered without a close working relationship with the federal government.

It is one of the items that I had on my agenda when I met with the Prime Minister, the Hon. Scott Morrison, in Canberra on Tuesday. I asked him whether he would again consider, when we are ready, to be able to bring forward projects already agreed with the federal government beyond the forward estimates within the forward estimates. This was the case last year.

I still remember when the Minister for Planning, Transport and Infrastructure said, 'We're going to do whatever we can to bring forward projects,' and those opposite were saying, 'This will never happen.' Well, it did, and that is why I said to the Prime Minister, 'Thank you very much, sir. We appreciate this.' Of course, if there is another opportunity as we work very diligently to do the work that is needed to put forward projects, to bring them forward he said that he would look on that. I am very grateful, and I hope we have more to announce on this topic in future months.

Can I say, also, though, that only yesterday in the parliament I was talking about our petition, essentially to the Prime Minister, to establish an independent umpire for the Murray-Darling Basin Plan. This was necessary to restore confidence, trust, if you like, within the plan. Would you believe, sir, that only today federal minister Littleproud has announced that an inspector-general position will be created. I would like to particularly acknowledge the work of our environment and water minister, the Hon. David Speirs—

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL: —who has worked very diligently on this task—

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL: —keeping people at the table, making sure that we get every, single, solitary skerrick—I don't know whether you can—

Mr Brown interjecting:

The SPEAKER: The member for Playford!

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL: —have a skerrick of water, but every drop of water that we are entitled to here in South Australia. Of course, the other great example of cooperation, if you like, between the federal government and the state government is with our $551 million City Deal in South Australia, which will be transformative for our CBD, for our city and for our state and, dare I say, for the nation, because located on Lot Fourteen—

Members interjecting:

The SPEAKER: Order!

The Hon. S.S. MARSHALL: —will be the Australian Space Agency, the SmartSat Cooperative Research Centre. These two things alone will be absolutely transformative for our state. We have been able to work with the federal government cooperatively on a Designated Area Migration Agreement for South Australia. We believe that we can support a greater population in South Australia. We have an ambition for a greater population, and we are very grateful to the federal government for supporting us in that.

Those opposite had 16 years, and we got further and further behind the national population growth rate. Sir, you know this: at the most recent federal election we lost a seat. We lost influence in the federal parliament. We are making up that influence by working in a cooperative way and delivering for our state.

The SPEAKER: I will call the leader. I have a couple of things I need to deal with. I call the following members to order for their interjections during the Premier's answer: the member for Wright, the member for Playford, the member for Lee, the Minister for Innovation, the member for Morphett, the member for Kaurna and the Leader of the Opposition.