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Unis expressinterest inag institute

Tom Zaunmayr.North West Telegraph

Talks around establishing a Northern Institute to attract agriculture research funding are progressing, with WA universities showing interest in the proposal.

At a business lunch in Karratha last week, Regional Development Minister Alannah MacTiernan reiterated her desire to establish a university focusing on agriculture and aquaculture research in the North West.

“I don’t want to see northern agriculture continue to be run from Bunbury, Perth and Esperance,” she said.

“It makes much more sense to have that capability working up here in the regions.

“In terms of research dollars... we are getting breadcrumbs here because we don’t actually have a formal tertiary research institute presence.”

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Ms MacTiernan said West Australian universities had shown interest in establishing a presence in the North West after recent talks.

If the idea were to gain legs, such a facility could run a similar model to those on the east coast such as James Cook and Charles Darwin universities, which attract a high level of funding for research, into Northern Australia agriculture and aquaculture.

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