It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas here, and it’s time to get started on our holidays.
We saw a lot in 2013, not least of all a change of government and two of the remaining three Australian car makers announcing that manufacturing in Australia was no longer viable. Ford will shut its factories in 2016 and Holden in 2017.
Despite the difficulties in the auto sector and the hard task of adjusting ahead for its suppliers (and Toyota, should it find a way to survive as a car maker in Australia), there are good reasons for optimism in the next year.
The new government has signalled that it is not in the mood for generous subsidies to troubled industries, but there’s the likelihood it will at least bring some much-needed policy stability for those in the industry.
Prime minister Tony Abbott’s government has also indicated that energy is finally on the agenda, and will be one of the issues a ministerial taskforce will consider.
The east coast gas shortage is one of the huge looming issues, and it’s reassuring to know that it’s at least on the government’s radar.
Another reason to be optimistic is that manufacturing is starting to expand again. Though the PMI was in negative territory for November, there was growth in September and October. This doesn’t sound like much, but after month-on-month negative results for more than two years it’s a start.
We won’t bore you with a set of predictions for 2014, so we will just say thank you for visiting us this year and for your comments, suggestions and occasional criticisms.
If you feel like some sort of year-in-review, please feel free to have a look at our Top 10 manufacturing stories for 2013 feature.
Once again, thank you for your interest and look forward to much more news, features and analysis (we have some exciting, expert contributors for you to look forward to next year. Stay tuned.)
Have a great holiday. We’ll be back on January 6.