Australia’s Victoria Government has announced that works to build safer and reliable roads across the South West of the state have begun.

The works have started under a A$272m ($207m) package to improve routes across the region, funded as part of the current state budget.

Works are being carried out on the Great Ocean Road and its inland routes, which support the dairy industry in the South West. Construction teams have begun work on the Barwon South West Dairy Supply Chain.

Roads that form part of the dairy routes include sections of Cobden-Warrnambool Road, Cobden-Stonyford Road, Cobden-Camperdown Road and the Princes Highway, which have been classified as priority roads.

Victoria Minister for Roads and Road Safety Ben Carroll said: “This investment in the network supports the growth and development of the farming and tourism industries in the South West.”

“Not only will these works support local economies, but they’ll also provide safer and more reliable journeys for local residents.”

The construction team members are currently rebuilding and resurfacing roads to improve their strength and longevity. They will also make assessments to safeguard the integrity of bridges in the area.

Upgrades to the Dairy Supply Chain are expected to be completed later this year.

Victoria Minister for Ports and Freight Melissa Horne said: “We’re not wasting any time starting work on the Barwon South West Dairy Supply Chain.

“By later this year, these routes will be better equipped to carry trucks and tractors, meaning goods can get to market more efficiently.”

Over the coming months, the government will focus on its A$140m ($106m) investment to improve the Great Ocean Road and its A$115m ($87.6m) investment to upgrade inland roads connected to the Princes Highway.

This week, the government launched a review into traffic light sequencing in an effort to make journeys faster and smoother.