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PM  commits $2.4b for WA roads
Horror road: The Great Northern Highway. Picture: Sharon Smith/The West Australian

The Abbott Government has signed off on a $2.4 billion infrastructure package for WA, including upgrades to two horror stretches of road.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott told The West Australian the projects were not only vital to the WA economy but could also stave off any softening from a slowdown in the resources sector.

Included in the WA roads package were upgrades to the Great Northern Highway and the North West Coastal Highway.

Funding for both projects had been at risk when the coalition axed the Regional Infrastructure Fund, which was paid for by the mining tax.

Infrastructure Minister Warren Truss was initially at odds with other senior ministers about whether all RIF projects were jeopardised.

Mr Abbott said the coalition had committed to the Perth Gateway project and the Swan Valley Bypass, which will get $615 million in Federal funding.

"So we are going to do a lot for Western Australia, one way or the other," Mr Abbott said.

"And we are conscious of the fact if there is a slowdown in mining investment, we will need to fill the space and infrastructure investment, we think, is the best way to do that."

The infrastructure funding for WA will be confirmed in Treasurer Joe Hockey's mid-year economic and fiscal outlook, which will be released tomorrow.

WA's share of the $20 billion-plus infrastructure package will be $2.44 billion over four years.

The Government will revive about $1 billion of projects in four States earmarked under Labor's Regional Infrastructure Fund, almost half of which are in WA.

Under the $308 million funding injection for the Great Northern Highway, an ageing 87km stretch of road between Muchea and Wubin will be widened, realigned and given overtaking lanes.

In the $174 million North West Coastal Highway upgrade, 136km between Minilya and Barradale will be widened and two bridges built. Triple road-trains and other heavy vehicles use this part of the highway, making it dangerous and costly in maintaining the narrow shoulders.

Transport Minister Troy Buswell has been seeking clarification on the projects since the Federal election because they were scheduled to begin next year.

Assistant Infrastructure Minister Jamie Briggs said the two upgrades would enhance productivity and improve safety.

"Guaranteed investment like this demonstrates our commitment to building the roads of the 21st century and growing the productive capacity of WA, without resorting to a mining tax that suffocates jobs growth and investment," Mr Briggs said.