The Opposition's North-West policy was a case of better late than never, according to North-West Minister Ernie Bridge.
He said much of the policy's content was an endorsement of existing Government programs.
"However, the inference that the North-West regions are stagnating is totally inaccurate," Mr Bridge said.
"For example, the North-West contributed $6 billion to the Western Australian economy last year - the Kimberley alone topped the $1 billion mark."
Other examples of the area's progress included:
· resource development projects valued at over $3 billion have been committed to in the north of WA with a further $1 billion under consideration;
· tourism in the North-West earned the State $164 million a year;
· the East Kimberley's horticultural production had grown to over $30 million a year and the Ord was exporting produce into sought-after Asia markets and throughout Australia.
"In recognition of this the Government has established specialised agencies to direct and promote the future of the North-West."
These included the Pilbara Development Commission, the Kimberley Development Commission, the Ord Development Council, Gascoyne Development Commission and the Carnarvon Development Council.
"Premier Carmen Lawrence, in her blueprint for WA's future - `Adding Value' - recognises the North-West's enormous potential and makes specific provisions to further enhance the area's unique assets," he said.
Mr Bridge said the Opposition's ideas for damming the Fitzroy River and developing a cotton industry in the West Kimberley were already at advanced stages under the Kimberley Pipeline Feasibility study commissioned by the Government in February last year.
"This initiative has already led to strong cotton investment proposals from eastern States and overseas interests which are clearly more familiar with the North-West than the Opposition is.
"As far as the North-West is concerned, the future is very bright indeed."