Orica boss calls for action on exchange rate

Explosives and chemicals manufacturer Orica says while its exposure to the exchange rate is limited, the high dollar is “hollowing out” the rest of the economy and hurting manufacturers.

In an interview on Inside Business Orica CEO Ian Smith said the Reserve Bank needed to do “everything in their power” to lower the value of the dollar.

 

“Manufacturing has been belted for an inordinately long time because of this high dollar. We've got to put some settings in place now so we do have a sector that can grow jobs into the future,” he said.

 

Smith said Orica would benefit from a drop in the dollar, but because around 50 per cent of its revenue was international the problem did not hurt its business as much as others.

 

Smith said other companies were feeling the pain from the high dollar, and local manufacturers were finding it hard to compete with overseas producers.

 

“We have contact points right through the manufacturing base of Australia, and a lot of those smaller manufacturers and distributors are being pushed out of business. They can't compete against imports,” he said.