2022 is the year that will place manufacturing in Australia firmly in the spotlight, and the announcement of the Modern Manufacturing Taskforce is a further sign of the NSW government’s commitment to strengthening capabilities across industry sectors.
Spearheaded by Investment NSW, the Taskforce’s commitment to advanced manufacturing is set to be a core focus at the upcoming Modern Manufacturing Town Hall on 30 March at Waterview Conference Centre, Sydney Olympic Park.
“NSW already has an excellent reputation in manufacturing, with sectors ranging from food and beverage to aerospace. The Taskforce will hone the opportunity we have post-COVID-19 to address challenges and build a manufacturing powerhouse,” minister for Enterprise, Investment and Trade Stuart Ayres said.
Ayres emphasises that advanced manufacturing is a priority sector for the NSW government, given its potential to support advanced and diverse industries such as space, medtech, agrifood, energy, technology and defence.
“The increased and growing strength of our domestic manufacturing capabilities has been a critical element in keeping our economy strong. It provides protection against future downturns and supply chain disruptions caused by the pandemic,” he said.
A partnership based on shared values
Speaking to why the NSW government chose to get involved with the Modern Manufacturing Town Hall and the larger Modern Manufacturing Expo (taking place in September), Ayres said: “The embrace of modern manufacturing, through the adoption of advanced business models, processes and technologies, will ensure the ongoing sustainability of the sector and the NSW economy at large.
“By becoming a founding partner of the Modern Manufacturing Expo, the NSW Government can continue to ensure our efforts to support the sector are made available to as many of our manufacturers as possible.”
International Exhibition & Conference Group (IEC) CEO, Marie Kinsella, agreed.
“Our primary intention in hosting events which bring the industry and key stakeholders together is to support manufacturers, particularly those in small-to-medium sized companies who may not be aware of the resources and funding available to aid in implementing advanced manufacturing techniques,” she said.
“By having Investment NSW come on board as a Foundation Partner, we will be able to directly connect manufacturers with a network that will nurture their growth and efforts to strengthen the thriving NSW economy.
How local manufacturers are competing on a global scale
NSW’s manufacturing industry is indeed thriving, as illustrated by the promising recent growth in the sector.
The more than 24,000 manufacturers in the state employ over 230,000 people and generate close to $120 billion annually. The sector exports an estimated $14 billion worth of goods each year.
“NSW hosts many specialised and niche manufacturers that have expanded their facilities and employment in the last year or two,” Ayres said. He adds that the NSW government has given support to manufacturers in a diverse scope of areas that range from organic fertiliser to medical diagnostics.
Ayres says that those who adopted modern manufacturing techniques during the COVID-19 pandemic benefited from the opportunity to grow their business and increase their global competitiveness.
“We look forward to hearing these businesses share their success stories at the Town Hall event.
Programs available to help manufacturers succeed
Manufacturers who wish to take advantage of the financial assistance programs offered by the NSW government to grow their business are encouraged to apply for the Jobs Plus Program, which is designed to reward companies that expand their economic footprint in NSW through job creation.
The program has $250 million in funding available to manufacturers, with the goal of creating 25,000 more jobs in NSW. Investment NSW says this will be achieved by reducing the cost of establishment and the financial risk while increasing speed to market. It includes a variety of support levers such as payroll tax relief, enabling infrastructure rebates and subsidised training package rebates.
Companies that wish to participate will need to commit to creating a minimum of 30 jobs within their organisation by 30 June 2024. Applications are open until the end of June 2022 and must be made online through the Service NSW Jobs Plus Program website.
“Being a part of this event and the Modern Manufacturing network also enables us to learn from industry, tailor our initiatives to their needs and to help it grow and drive innovation, productivity, competitiveness and job creation,” Ayres said.
For more information about the event, click here.