Media Release by The Hon Tanya Pibersek MP

First meeting of COAG Housing Working Group

The first meeting of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) Housing Working Group was held in Sydney today.

The meeting was chaired by the Federal Minister for Housing, Tanya Plibersek MP, who said afterwards that: ‘I was greatly encouraged by the willingness of all jurisdictions to work cooperatively to improve the affordability and accessibility of housing for all Australians.

‘After a decade of the blame game between the Commonwealth, State and Territory Governments, there is real enthusiasm to work together on positive, new initiatives in housing.

‘The Government is committed to improving the accessibility and affordability of housing, and that is why we made it a key priority for COAG in 2008.

‘I look forward to continuing to work with the States and Territories at future meetings of the Housing Working Group to implement the Government’s housing policy agenda.’

The Housing Working Group was one of seven working groups established at the COAG meeting on 20 December 2007.

The Housing Working Group has been set ambitious goals to progress the Government’s housing agenda including the reducing developer charges and planning delays through a Housing Affordability Fund, building 50,000 new affordable rental properties and 600 homes for the homeless.

Two further meetings of the Housing Working Group will be held before the Group reports to the next COAG meeting at the end of March.