December 1, 2022
Professor Alex Frino appointed to Royalties for Rejuvenation Fund body
Illawarra Regional Expert Panel will advise NSW Government on strategic planning, workforce development
Each year, the NSW Government sets aside at least $25 million from mining royalties to support local coal mining communities through the Royalties for Rejuvenation Fund. This funding goes directly to the regions to support their investments for strategic planning, workforce development programs, improving infrastructure and establishing new industries and employment opportunities.
As part of the Royalties for Rejuvenation Fund, the NSW Government has established Regional Expert Panels to represent all the major mining regions, including the Illawarra.
University of Wollongong (UOW) Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Innovation, Enterprise and External Relations) and Professor of Economics Alex Frino has been appointed as a member of the Illawarra Regional Expert Panel, joining seven other community leaders and local representatives in providing input into the NSW Government’s Royalties for Rejuvenation Fund.
“This is a wonderful initiative for our region, and I am honoured to become a part of it. I believe the panel’s work will provide an outstanding opportunity to re-set our region’s strategic direction. Especially so given that employment in the coal mining industry, which has served the Illawarra economically more than 100 years, will continue to shrink over the next 100 years,” Professor Frino said.
The Regional Expert Panels will be responsible for providing advice and recommendations to the Deputy Premier on applications received through the Fund to ensure all decision-making is aligned with the needs of the local area
Deputy Premier and Minister for Regional NSW Paul Toole said the panel members were appointed after a competitive, merit-based recruitment process.
“The panel, comprising members with a diverse range of skills, expertise, backgrounds and experiences, will serve over a three-year term, during which they will have a say in how the Fund is invested towards projects and initiatives like strategic planning and workforce development programs, the development of enabling infrastructure and the establishment of new industries and job opportunities,” Minister Toole said.
Professor Alex Frino, a distinguished financial economist, graduate of UOW and Cambridge University and a two-time Fulbright Scholar, will bring to the Panel his academic prowess and business acumen. Born and brought up in the southern suburbs of Wollongong, he’s also passionate about the region and wants to see it thrive, grow and re-create itself in new, sustainable ways.