Manufacturing capability has been highlighted as the “most promising” solution to some key priorities outlined in the federal government’s Intergenerational Report.
The report projects an outlook for the Australian economy for the next 40 years, and how current policies will affect the federal budget and economic growth.
Immediate priorities included increasing the capacity of the economy and workforce by improving workers’ skills; supporting participation in work; investing in infrastructure; and taking full advantage of digital technologies to boost productivity.
Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre (AMGC) managing director Dr Jens Goennemann said the manufacturing sector is capable of addressing these priorities.
“Manufacturing is the most promising capability Australia has, to ensure that we maintain our high living standards into the future while sustaining an ageing population,” he said.
“The solutions to some of the challenges the Intergenerational Report highlights are right in front of us and manufacturing capability is amongst the options – now we just have to act.”
Improving workers’ skills and boosting productivity go hand-in-hand through working and managing smarter, according to Ai Group chief executive Innes Willox.
“There are clear roles for businesses, financial institutions, individuals and governments in achieving progress in these areas,” Willox said.
“Productivity growth also requires smarter regulation and regulator practice and greater adaptability of workplace practices, and more flexible industrial relations.
“Skills remains one of our biggest national challenges, and the generational shortcomings exposed in the IGR emphasise once again that we have to get our approach to skills and training right,” he said.
Upskilling and reskilling engineers and other manufacturing employees will support participation at work and increase the economy’s capacity.
“Skilling-up young people more effectively for the jobs of the future and investing in reskilling initiatives for the existing workforce are key directions,” Willox said.
Manufacturing and investing in low and zero-emissions technologies is another way Australia can address the report’s priorities.
“Another top priority to addressing the IGR challenges is the imperative to improve certainty over energy and climate policy, as a foundation for investment in reliable and affordable energy and in low and zero-emissions technologies and practices,” Willox said.
“Hopefully the need for action to maintain the COVID recovery will spur governments, businesses and the community more broadly to act more decisively on the numerous issues that have been clear for many years.”
The complete Intergenerational Report 2021 can be viewed here: https://lnkd.in/dUet_KD