Australian Manufacturing – Looking Back – duplicate

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I have heard people say how great the Australian manufacturing industry was during its prime. People saying ‘They needed so many people we were just pulled off the street’. What a great time it must have been. Unfortunately, in 2022 being a young engineer I can only look back on those times and wonder about the level of engineering that was shifted off shore. Looking back even a couple years I know firsthand how electronics and manufacturing expos have shrunk.

While in the late 50s early 60s the manufacturing industry contributed to just under 30% to Australia’s GDP, by no means is manufacturing dead in Australia as most people think. Manufacturing still brings $100 billion to the GDP and employs 900,000 people. The decline in manufacturing was seen in the 70s when nations like Japan and now more recently China entered manufacturing. With such low labour costs importing goods seemed like a far more efficient solution and slowly the manufacturing industry within Australia began to crumble and with it, the ability to have skilled labourers’ complete jobs.

Today post Covid, it looks like people in power are starting to realise Australian manufacturers need to be part of the global supply network when building quality goods. In 2020 the Australian Government pledged 1.3 billion dollars in the next four years as part of the “Modern Manufacturing Strategy” in a bid to make our local teams competitive on a global stage. Along with other smaller initiatives it looks like manufacturing in Australia seems to have a brighter future moving forward. Hopefully, it is not all talk. It was a rude awakening for the government, realising not assisting the manufacturers when they asked for help was a step in the wrong direction.

So with all of this what needs to be done. The government needs to invest in companies to help find the direction they need to be moving in. Whether it be in digital technologies, new R&D advancements, or new company direction. A big part of this is digitisation and Industry 4.0. This is the modernisation that will help Australia become competitive with other low labour costing countries. By automating processes through a data driven feedback system and placing everything in a digital state we gain more time, more flexibility, lower costs, and will have the ability to make more rational decisions because of data now becoming usable. So why hasn’t there been a push by companies to welcome this stance. This is because the initial investment and time that mainly SMEs need to invest. It just does not seem feasible under the current climate. With such vast resources needed, if the government wants to make Australia a competitive entity in the world market this is one of the issues they need to address quickly and more importantly make the support they offer widely accessible to all businesses out there.
In short, it appears that the government is recognising the need to support our manufacturing industry as it’s an engine that is hardy and trustworthy, but on how to do it and how quickly seems to still be up in the air.

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Australian Manufacturing – Looking Back

I have heard people say how great the Australian manufacturing industry was during its prime. People saying ‘They needed so many people we were just

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