In an interview this week, Emerson said his appointment as Shadow ICT and Science Minister was a 'commitment' from the Liberal-National Party to the portfolio in terms of where it was going as a party.
The politician says as his first steps opposing Schwarten, he will be talking to people across the industry in the private and public sectors '” to gauge an impression of where things were going well; and where not so well. One issue '” a favourite one of Queensland-based technology companies like Technology One '” will be the extent to which the State Government uses local products.
'In terms of ICT particularly, [the Queensland Government] is probably the biggest consumer of ICT products in the state; but not the biggest consumer of Queensland's ICT products,' says Emerson. 'The LNP is a party which is determined to support the local ICT industry; and business and job creation.'
Other issues will include getting the basics right, an area in which Labor has suffered some problems in the past. 'The bottom line for ICT for a state government is reliability,' says Emerson. 'ICT does provide opportunities to provide services to Queenslanders more efficiently and effectively '” but it also has to be more reliable.'
Another issue in Queensland is the National Broadband Network. Like most Labor state government's Anna Bligh's administration is behind the initiative; but it's also facing dissent from rural councils and the Liberal-National party dominated Brisbane Council, which has pledged to roll out its own fibre around the city in competition with the NBN.