The Queensland government has announced a new Manufacturing Skills Working Group, made up of government, industry and union representatives, to oversee the recommendations of a report outlining Queensland industry’s transition to advanced manufacturing.
The working group is part of the Queensland government’s response to the Jobs Queensland Advancing Manufacturing Skills report, which was handed to the government in February.
Queensland’s Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick and Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development Shannon Fentiman announced the government’s acceptance-in-principle of the report’s 10 priority action areas.
Dick said the working group would oversee the implementation of the report’s recommendations to further support companies to transition to advanced manufacturing.
“The Palaszczuk Government recognises that the traditional manufacturing sector is undergoing a major change, and this proposed new working group will help us accelerate outcomes in our Advanced Manufacturing 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan,” Dick said.
“The Jobs Queensland skills report aligns with our vision to support traditional manufacturers transition to using new technologies such as advanced robotics, nanoelectronics, design in manufacturing, data analytics and innovative production systems to produce high-value, customised products with highly skilled workforces.
“Known collectively as Industry 4.0 – or the Fourth Industrial Revolution – the adoption of new training and techniques will drive improvement in efficiency, productivity, innovation, exports, economic growth and skilled jobs.”
Fentiman said the Jobs Queensland report – Advancing Manufacturing Skills: A Skills, Training and Workforce Development Strategy for the Manufacturing Industry in Queensland –laid the foundations for the development of a highly-skilled manufacturing workforce to contribute to the sector’s competitiveness in the future.
“We will build on our investment of more than $50 million in VET outcomes in 2017-18 in a wide variety of qualifications relevant to the manufacturing industry,” she said.
“The reportidentifies priorities for government action, links with existing programs, and outlines initiatives to shape sustainable workforce development, business growth and training.”
Dick said the implementation of the report’s actions would be a collaborative approach across government, with his department taking the lead and the Department of Employment, Small Business and Training in a supporting role.
“The implementation of the strategy is another critical step in growing this vital sector and will add impetus to the groundwork that has been laid by my new Manufacturing Ministerial Committee, which will provide strategic industry advice to government,” he said.
“It also aligns with our ongoing $40 million Made in Queensland state-wide grants to enhance Queensland’s small to medium enterprise manufacturers’ international competitiveness, productivity and innovation.”
The manufacturing industry has consistently contributed around $20 billion per year over the last decade to the Queensland economy.
Manufacturing is Queensland’s sixth-largest employing industry with more than 170,000 people in the year to June 2018 and is the third-largest employer of full-time workers.