National News

LNP flags regional Qld casinos if elected

Queensland's Liberal National Party opposition would allow up to two casino to be built in north or central Queensland if returned to power, a move that's attracted swift criticism from the current Labor government.

LNP Deputy Leader Deb Frecklington made the announcement in Yeppoon on Thursday, saying the government's requirement for casinos was holding back resort development.

"Developers are extremely interested in building a world-class Integrated Resort Development (IRD) in regional Queensland but Labor won't give them a chance," she said.

"Labor's criteria has stifled the development of an IRD in regional Queensland because of the requirement the regional casino be located within 70km of a major population centre with a catchment of at least 150,000 people."

Mr Frecklington said Great Keppel Island would be excluded from gaining a casino licence under Labor's current selection criteria.

But State Development Minister Anthony Lynham said the LNP's claim was "factually inaccurate".

"Tower Holdings (the long-time proponent of the redevelopment of Great Keppel Island) has been on the record saying they don't need a casino licence to proceed, and they have all the approvals they need," Dr Lynham said.

"Maybe (the LNP) could join me in encouraging Tower to get on with the redevelopment and start creating the jobs they've been promising Rockhampton and Yeppoon for a long time now."

The back-and-forth on casino licences came as One Nation announced it would block the development of a casino and resort at The Spit on the Gold Coast if it finds itself holding the balance of power after the upcoming state election.

Queensland One Nation Leader Steve Dickson said another casino on the tourist strip would have a massive impact on smaller businesses like surf and football clubs.

"I understand how these clubs operate; they aren't big organisations, they are mum and pop organisations," Mr Dickson said on the Gold Coast.

"This is about the future of our region, because if it happens here, where is it going to happen next?"

© AAP 2017

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