Wednesday, 3 February 2021
Questions without Notice
My question goes to the Minister for Industry, Science and Technology. Will the minister please outline how the Morrison government is backing our manufacturers to create jobs as part of our plan to build a stronger Australia and to keep it strong?
I thank the member for his question. Over the last few weeks in particular I've been out visiting many of our manufacturers—well, over a dozen, in fact—and every time I'm out on the factory floor with them, they say to me how appreciative they are of the support that the Morrison government has given to them and to their businesses. So, as you heard earlier from the Prime Minister, there are many things that we are doing to make sure that we get the economic conditions right for every single business in Australia, but especially for our manufacturing businesses.
It was just the other week that I visited the member for Fairfax and he and I announced a grant of $1 million for one of his local businesses, Naturo. They have developed world-first technology that extends the expiry of fresh milk to about 60 days. They will use the money that we have given to them, along with matched funding of their own, to build a pilot plant in Coolum. That is a process that will take them on the way to scale, and, when they scale, they will then start creating jobs in Coolum and jobs in Tasmania. This is just one example of the way that we have used grants, such as the Accelerating Commercialisation grants, to assist businesses to take the next steps to be able to commercialise their product and get it to the market.
There was a question earlier that dealt specifically with manufacturing, and the Prime Minister, as I said, spoke in a lot of detail about getting the economic conditions right. I would like to add to that platform by saying that what we have been doing with our manufacturing strategy is making sure that we are working with industry to look at the subsectors where we will be able to support our manufacturers to become competitive, to be resilient and to build scale, because it is as we build scale that we are going to build the jobs of the future. This is not a short-term process; this is not a quick sugar-hit. This is a well-thought-through policy and strategy that will be rolled out over the next 10 years, to make sure that we are building manufacturing businesses here in Australia and that we are developing the scale that we need, because we on this side of the House understand how important manufacturing businesses are and how important manufacturing workers are, because we care about manufacturing in this country. (Time expired)