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Delivering our plan to help manufacturers grow

Australian manufacturers face a challenging business environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite historically low interest rates, we are still seeing investment and growth hampered by low business and consumer confidence.

But, working together we can help manufacturing grow by:

Creating a competitive business environment

  • Taking action to get our tax settings right, lower energy costs, reduce the regulatory burden, open up trade opportunities and improve our industrial relations system.
  • Encouraging higher levels of technology investment.
  • Ensuring the education system is providing workers with the skills to support uptake of automation, data analytics and artificial intelligence.
  • Building business management capabilities.

Building scale

  • Focusing on our strategic and comparative strengths and leveraging our hard fought gains.
  • Supporting greater levels of collaboration between businesses and researchers so that they can understand the benefits of innovation, harness our world-class research capabilities and translate our great ideas into commercial outcomes.
  • Increasing opportunities for Australia’s manufacturers to improve their capabilities and shift up the value chain.
  • Facilitating connections between and within sectors, both domestically and internationally, focusing on enabling capabilities to add value right across the economy.
  • Enabling partnerships with various levels of government to build scale and better leverage investment.
  • Sending a strong signal that Australia is open for business and we are backing our manufacturers.

Boosting supply chain resilience

  • Recognising the value of domestic manufactured items to drive demand for our high-value goods.
  • Working across and within various supply chains to discover new business opportunities, strengthen relationships, and expand sources of supply.

Immediate actions

We are resetting our approach, putting manufacturing policy front and centre of the Government’s JobMaker plan. However, this is not a task the Government can or should achieve on its own. The barriers to growth are varied and the solutions require a tailored approach.

We are taking immediate steps to deliver business competitiveness and resilience at scale by directing our support to our National Manufacturing Priorities, including our programs and investments. We will work with industry to co-design road maps that outline the vision, opportunities, actions and key milestones for our agreed priority areas.

We are investing in a round two of the Manufacturing Modernisation Fund, fast-tracking capital investment to support Australia’s recovery following COVID-19, by helping build the business confidence needed to take on new employees and invest in new equipment over the recovery period.

Road maps to recovery and beyond

We will partner with industry to immediately lay the groundwork for prioritising and boosting collaboration and investment in our National Manufacturing Priorities. We will facilitate a co-designed process with industry-led expert teams to develop road maps against each of the National Manufacturing Priorities. Together with industry, we will identify the roadblocks to growth and actions to overcome them. A refocused and refreshed Industry Innovation and Science Australia will have a key advisory role on the road maps and investment decisions.

The road maps for each National Manufacturing Priority will build on existing sector plans. They will outline:

  • a shared vision for manufacturing in each priority sector
  • opportunities and barriers to achieving scale in manufacturing
  • opportunities for exports, global market diversification and foreign direct investment
  • sector-specific Key Performance Indicators and performance metrics to assess growth in manufacturing over time
  • common views on new approaches which could deliver improvements in capability
  • identification of opportunities for partnerships which deliver on the objectives of the Strategy

Each road map will set the direction for these sectors over ten years and signal how we are responding to industry needs. The road map development cycle will be finalised in the first half of 2021.