Investment attraction and employment creation is a priority for Council’s Economic Development and Innovation unit.
Council has adopted an Investment Attraction Policy with the aim of promoting the region as a base for business opportunity. The policy focuses on strategies to attract investment that would create new jobs and infrastructure.
Investment attraction incentives
Cairns Regional Council’s Investment Attraction Incentives are available to businesses to attract future investments in key strategic industries, where the nature and scale of the proposed investment will stimulate significant economic and community benefits, diversity and value-add to the wider regional economy beyond the growth of the business itself.
Incentives focus on projects that will:
- create new jobs
- create direct value-add through construction and operations
- catalyse additional investment
- catalyse growth in a key strategic area
- support growth of other companies.
The Incentives Package may assist businesses wishing to locate and/or expand operations in the region in a number of ways including:
- Appointment of a Case Manager
- Integrated and expedited approvals process
- Property location assistance
- Business case assistance
- Welcome information package
- Direct financial assistance (eg, grants for infrastructure costs, grants for establishment costs, deferment of infrastructure charge)
Incentives are specifically targeted to businesses in the following industries:
- Advanced manufacturing
- Creative industries
- Professional and business services
- Tropical services and products
- Value-adding agricultural production
All applications will be assessed on a case-by-case basis. The following key eligibility criteria have been developed to ensure the efficacy and targeted use of financial incentives:
- Project provides a significant net economic and community benefit to Cairns.
- Project is contestable (is considering other locations or would not otherwise happen in Cairns).
- Project is viable in the absence of incentives.
- Project must align with Council strategic direction and policies.
- Proponent has a successful track record and is capable of supporting the type of project proposed.
- Project does not cause significant detriment to, and/or be in substitution for, existing businesses in the region.
- Proponent and project are environmentally responsible.
- Proponent must have an ABN and be able to submit at least two years of financial records.
- Project must not compromise obligations of the Australian or Queensland governments.
- Project must be fully supported by a fully costed plan.
- Project must be clearly linked to an overall business plan.
Applications for Council's Investment Attraction Incentives Package must be made formally through an application process. Proponents and projects will undergo rigorous assessment to ensure that only those projects that will provide a net economic and community benefit to the Cairns region are considered as being potentially eligible.
Refer to the Guidelines (see Related Documents at right) for details on the criteria considered during the evaluation of applications.
A final application must contain:
- A fully completed Application Form (download from Related Documents at right)
- Accountant-prepared financial statements for the previous two financial years, and interim results for the current financial year.
- Detailed estimates of the expenditure for which funding is sought, including quotes where applicable.
- Other relevant supporting documentation as outlined in the application form.
Council officers can provide detailed advice on eligibility and guidance with the application process and documentation. Acceptance of a signed application does not guarantee financial incentive approval for either all or part of the incentive being sought.