TXM Managing Director, Tim McLean, is passionate about manufacturing in Australia. This passion and the poor media coverage the industry has received this year inspired Tim to establish a new blog on Linked In focused on creating an informed discussion on Australia’s Manufacturing Future.
Although only established for two months, the Linked In Group Australian Manufacturing Futures has already attracted a large following of experienced manufacturing experts including senior managers from both private companies and major corporates, members of industry groups and government professionals.
The aim of the group is to broaden the discussion on manufacturing in Australia from the simplistic views expressed in the media and by politicians. Media coverage and debate on manufacturing in Australia has been largely reduced to “manufacturing in Australian is the Auto Industry and it has no future”. To those of us who have worked in the industry all our careers this is completely wrong and ignores huge diversity of our manufacturing and its ability to innovate and create jobs in Australian cities – where they are needed. We can not rely on mining alone, it employs a limited number of people in remote areas away from where Australians live and is highly cyclical. Likewise many of our service industries rely on manufacturing as a creator of wealth to fund hospitals, schools and public services as well as support the business of service industries such as banking, recruitment, and wholesaling. Manufacturing is vital for Australia, but talk of a “restructuring” of the Australian economy indicates that the political and economic elites in this country have accepted its inevitable and irreversible decline. By contrast other major western economies such as Germany, Sweden, Canada and Japan have large export driven manufacturing sectors. We as professionals in manufacturing need to start discussing concrete positive solutions based on our experience and see whether we can get a more nuanced and intelligent debate and better policy for the industry we all love.
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