While remaining marginally positive, the General Business Expectations indicator for the next six months has softened and the employment outlook continues to deteriorate.
A lobby group featuring some of Australia’s leading manufacturing CEOs has been announced, designed to promote Australia’s comparative industrial advantages.
Andrew Liveris, the Australian-born CEO of US-based international firm Dow Chemical, has said that Dow would invest “multiple hundreds of millions” in Australia if the country changed its energy policy.
Major gas producers Santos and Origin have rejected calls by manufacturing lobbyists to reserve gas for domestic use.
The Illawarra Region Innovation and Investment Fund, budgeted at $300 million and designed in response to 800 redundancies at BlueScope’s operations in Port Kembla, has been called a failure by some that it was designed to assist.
Business groups have been described as giving last night’s federal budget a “cool” response, with the Australian Industry Group and others disappointed at its taxation measures.
The Australian Council of Trade Unions has said that the federal budget, to be delivered tonight, should invest in manufacturing and protect Australian jobs.
Industry groups have criticised the Coalition’s new industrial relations policy as not going far enough. They claim it will not deliver the confidence that the economy needs.
Analysts at JP Morgan say the latest round of purchasing managers index data shows only modest growth in the global manufacturing industry.
Australia’s renewable energy target and carbon pricing system is hurting manufacturers and threatening the competitiveness of local industries, Origin Energy CEO Grant King says.
Adelaide’s largest ice manufacturer, Adelaide Ice Services, has received a grant from the Federal Government that will help it reduce energy costs by $20,000 a year.
South Australian Manufacturing Minister Tom Kenyon says he will use a visit to Qatar and the United Arab Emirates to strengthen Australia’s manufacturing presence in the Middle East.
Trade Minister Craig Emerson said on Thursday that free trade talks stalled because Australia will not lift its foreign investment review threshold.
Deakin University is set to lose $16 million in funding over the next two years as part of reforms to the education system, and officials say the move could hurt future manufacturing initiatives.
The Business Council of Australia and others are planning to launch a campaigning to convince politicians from all sides to govern for the long-term good.
Opposition minister for Innovation, Industry, and Science Sophie Mirabella says she still has faith in the future of the manufacturing sector, despite its current challenges.
The local content part of federal government’s plan to assist manufacturers is “cumbersome”, a threat to commercial confidentiality and could actually destroy jobs, according to the Minerals Council of Australia.
The debate over subsidies to the automotive sector continues, with opposition leader Tony Abbott yesterday suggesting that he wants to see the country’s car manufacturers’ exports improve.
The level of government support given to Australia’s auto industry has been defended after Holden announced that it was making 500 positions redundant, a quarter of its workforce.
Manufacturers’ representative the Australian Food and Grocery Council has expressed renewed concern about the spread of private label brands throughout supermarkets.