The Queensland Southern Outback Project

The South West Regional Economic Development (SWRED) comprises the six Local Government areas of Maranoa Regional Council, Balonne Shire Council, Murweh Shire Council, Paroo Shire Council, Quilpie Shire Council and Bulloo Shire Council. It has a total area of 319,884.2 km2 or 18.4 per cent of the total area of the state.

The SWRED Association, formally known as the Mulga Tourist Development Board, was founded in the late 1980s by Bulloo, Murweh, Paroo and Quilpie. Balonne and Maranoa were recently added in 1992 to foster a cohesive collaboration that promotes tourism within the region.  

The combined SWRED regional economy has grown from having a strong reliance mostly on primary industries to incorporating more diversified economies centred in the major centres of Roma, St George, Charleville, Quilpie, Cunnamulla and Thargomindah. Industries such as Agriculture, Coal Seam Gas, Mining, Transport, Logistics and Warehousing, Food Processing, Tourism and Health Care have all contributed to creating an economically diverse and stable region.

SWRED is a powerful representative body that implements economically viable projects and initiatives of regional significance. This includes advocating for the retention of industries (reinstatement of Quilpie and Charleville cattle trains and sheep industry) and services (Wild Dog Control, exclusion fencing and developing premium meat supply opportunities) in the South West region. Not to mention, the identification of business investment opportunities through emerging technologies.

Purpose of SWRED

The purpose of this website is to foster collaboration between local government, industry and community stakeholders to achieve economic tourism development outcomes which could not be achieved by working in isolation. It also provides a regional overview of all south-west QLD tourism offerings and allows the user to interact with locals to uncover unexpected surprises. By creating an emotional connection between people, places and experiences, Queensland’s Southern Outback can bring authentic rural history to life.

The idea that travellers are curious by nature has fostered key experience themes. Whether users enrich their mind by uncovering Australia’s Dinosaurs, wonder at Stars in the outback night sky or relax in ancient Artesian baths. Or perhaps discover the strong connection between Queensland’s national parks and rich Indigenous culture, heritage and History. Travellers can uncover new ‘one-off’ experiences such as interacting with endangered Bilbies and discovering Australia’s mighty drovers and infamous bushrangers.  

By visiting Queensland’s Southern Outback, users can venture into the future, visit the past, and ignite a sense of curiosity by discovering what this region has to offer.