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About SWDC

About us

We’re working with you to shape the future of the South West.

Here at the South West Development Commission, “we work on tomorrow, today”.

We know that what we do now will matter in the months, years and decades ahead.

So, in partnership with stakeholders we identify, support and drive projects that will take the region forward.

A key focus is pursuing economic development outcomes for the South West by supporting local jobs, industry and business.

Another is improving quality of life by enhancing liveability and the qualities which make the region unique.

Our objectives

We are part of a network of regional development commissions across Western Australia. 

Each commission is dedicated to serving one of the state’s nine regions.

We aim to:

  • Maximise job creation and improve career opportunities in the region;
  • Develop and broaden the economic base of the region;
  • Identify infrastructure services needed to promote economic and social development within the region;
  • Provide information and advice to promote business development within the region;
  • Seek to ensure that the general standard of government services and access to those services in the region is comparable to that which applies in the metropolitan area; and
  • Generally take steps to encourage, promote, facilitate and monitor the economic development in the region.

Collaborative approach

We take a collaborative approach to developing the region, working with community, business, industry and government.

Sometimes it’s us driving the projects. For example,  the Transforming Bunbury’s Waterfront project or the proposal for an advanced manufacturing hub for Bunbury Geographe.

Other times, we support initiatives led by others. This could involve providing funding to get projects off the ground through our grants programs. It could also involve supporting businesses and jobs through services such as TradeStart or the Local Content Adviser Network.

A brief history

The South West Development Commission was enacted in April 1994 under the Regional Development Commissions Act 1993. 

Prior to 1994, the South West Development Commission was known as the South West Development Authority. The Authority was established by its own act of parliament in 1984 to plan, coordinate and promote the economic and social development of the South West region of Western Australia.

Achievements of the Authority ranged from the development of Bunbury as a regional centre through the Better Cities Project, to the establishment of the Bunbury Institute of Advanced Education (now Edith Cowan University South West Campus)

Our more recent achievements include building the case for the Busselton Margaret River Airport development and redeveloping Bunbury’s Dolphin Discovery Centre.

In focus

Spotlight on business, industry + investment

We work to leverage the region’s exceptional qualities to build industry, business and investment. 

In doing so, we assist local businesses to crack international markets, grow emerging industries and give people even more reason to visit the South West.

All of this is in a day’s work for us as we endeavour to secure regional prosperity.

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