Industry minister, Senator Kim Carr, has announced the members of the Future Manufacturing Industry Innovation Council, which meets for the first time in Canberra today (December 2).
“The onset of the global economic crisis has made it more important than ever that Australia has a strong and globally competitive manufacturing industry,” Senator Carr said.
“The future of Australian manufacturing is not in low-tech, high-volume sectors where we struggle to compete with low-wage economies.
“Our future is in high-tech, high-skill and high-wage manufacturing where we are competitive and where we have world-class capabilities and technology.
“This council has been established to help build that future,” Senator Carr said.
The council will focus on Australia’s most innovative manufacturers — those that use advanced materials and processes to add exceptionally high value.
Examples include the scientific and medical instruments industry, ICT, renewable energy, specialist engineering, and aerospace.
It will also look at the growing area of manufacturing services and the opportunities for Australian manufacturers in the global response to climate change.
“The council will help develop strategies for boosting Australia’s competitive advantage and exploiting existing opportunities in manufacturing,” Senator Carr said.
Council chair Philip Binns has extensive experience in many areas of high-tech, precision manufacturing, from product development to sales and exports.
He is general manager of Varian Australia, which exports around 95 per cent of the output from its Melbourne facility.
“Council members will work with companies, researchers, government and unions to increase the manufacturing sector’s capacity to take advantage of new technologies and new opportunities,” Senator Carr said.
Members of the Future Manufacturing Industry Innovation Council are:
Philip Binns (Chair) Managing Director, Varian Australia
Pat Boland Joint Managing Director, ANCA
Lyle Bruce Chief Executive Officer, GroundProbe
Sharan Burrow National President, ACTU
Peter Cockbain Past President, Engineers Australia
Dr Calum Drummond Chief, CSIRO Materials Science and Engineering
Brad Dunstan Chief Executive Officer, VCAMM
Dr Bronwyn Evans Senior Vice President, Cochlear
Dr Michael Green General Manager, Manufacturing Innovation Branch, Manufacturing Division, Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research
Bruce Grey Group Managing Director, Bishop Technologies
Prof Erol Harvey Research Leader, IRIS (Swinburne) and CEO of MiniFab
Erich Hofmann Managing Director, Hofmann Engineering
Paul Howes National Secretary, Australian Workers Union
Dave Oliver National Secretary, Australian Manufacturing Workers Union
David Malloch Chief Executive Officer, Malloch Digital Design
Tony Quick Director and General Manager, GKN Aerospace Engineering
Prof Elizabeth Taylor AO Executive Dean, Sciences, Engineering & Health, CQU
Diane Tompson Managing Director, Powercom Group
Sylvia Tulloch General Manager, Dyesol Industries
Gary Zamel Managing Director, Latitude Investments