House debates

Thursday, 3 September 2020

Statements by Members

Hunter Region: Manufacturing

1:45 pm

Photo of Meryl SwansonMeryl Swanson (Paterson, Australian Labor Party) Share this | | Hansard source

The Newcastle Herald headline today screams, '4,000 lost jobs—how the Hunter's manufacturing industry is shrinking.' And that's on the watch of this government. For seven long years they have controlled the Treasury purse strings, and for seven long years we've watched as they've let the manufacturing industry and the jobs that go with it get honeycombed in Australia. That's to the point where when we have a pandemic we can't even produce our own PPE. It is a national disgrace.

Our national economy is struggling. But the Hunter region has been the shoulders upon which this nation has been standing for decades—we have drawn the coal, produced the energy, made the steel, built the ships and produced the aluminium while this government is asleep at the wheel. It is an absolute disgrace.

As we see more and more pressure being piled on the people of Australia and the people of New South Wales, the Premier of New South Wales said, 'Oh, well, we're not very good at making things in New South Wales so we need to import them.' This is an absolute scandal. Just last week she said that she was proud of our manufacturing industry in New South Wales, and now we're not very good at building trains. Shame on you, Prime Minister, and shame on you, New South Wales Premier!