Manufacturing News

Carbon tax to condemn Australia to “a rusty museum”

The chair of BlueScope Steel, Graham Kraehe, has slammed the Government’s “selective spin” on the effect of the carbon tax on manufacturing in Australia.

He said “nothing is more certain to condemn us to a rusting museum than the destructive carbon agenda currently being pursued,” during an address at The Press Club, which has been recorded on the liberal party’s website.

Kraehe’s comment is especially timely with the NSW election on the weekend, which saw the Libreal party take the majority of NSW seats.

Speculation has been rife that the carbon tax ‘spooked’ many labor diserters.

He also accused the Government of being “prepared to sacrifice a key sector of the economy” and “prepared to sacrifice Australian manufacturing”.

“Under the policy promoted by Garnaut and supported by the Government there will be no Australian steel industry in 20 years,” he said.

He stated that a… “difficult economic position is now being exacerbated by political expediency around a carbon tax.”

The manufacturing industry’s disapproval of the carbon tax — which could come into effect mid-2012 — has been displayed by the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union secretary, Dave Oliver, who says it will cause the loss of many factories and jobs.

Kraehe doesn’t believe there will be any compensation either, stating, “it is simply a bandaid on a bullet wound,” and that we should not adopt a carbon tax until 70% of our competitor nations do the same.

According to Sophie Mirabella, Shadow Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, the Kraehe has summed up the sector’s anxiety, frustration and predictions about the impacts of the carbon tax.

“He has blown the lid on Julia Gillard’s destructive carbon agenda,” she said.

“This tax will decimate Australian manufacturing and send a tide of Australian businesses offshore and ultimately result in increased carbon emissions by exporting manufacturing to less efficient nations.

“Ms Gillard should send the carbon tax to the tax summit and include important industries like the steel industry to participate in this critical national debate.”

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