Geelong is Strong event held

The
Australian Manufacturing and Farming Program held an expo at Royal Geelong Showground
yesterday.

The event,
titled Geelong Is Strong, was attended by about 150, according to the ABC.

The area
has been hit by announcements in the last year by Ford (which will end manufacturing
in Australia in 2016), Alcoa (which will close its smelter and rolling mill
this year) and Qantas (which has stopped maintenance work at Avalon Airport.

Jamie
Baensch, general manager at Lara’s Air Radiators and chairman of the Geelong Manufacturing
Council, said that local manufacturers wanted policy stability more than
anything else.

“Where we really want some help is to have a bipartisan
strategy, some sort of accord or principals so we’re not seeing changes,” he told the ABC.

Victorian
Democratic Labour Party Senator John Madigan said that local businesses wanted
certainty rather than special assistance measures.

“Farmers, manufacturers and food producers don’t want a
hand out, they just don’t want to get kicked in the head,” he said.

The program is an initiative of federal politicians MP Bob Katter and Senators Madigan and Nick
Xenophon, and has been running since 2012.

It was
established to promote industry and “bring politicians out of Parliament House and into the real world.”

Image: https://www.facebook.com/amfpaustralia

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