More reasons SA is making itself a basket case in manufacturing

Comment by Peter Roberts I have previously argued that the South Australian government once the centre of the sector has given up on manufacturing. It has no manufacturing minister, no manufacturing section in any department, no bureaucrat with that responsibility and no focus on the sector other than a few sexy areas and Canberra’s pet…

No Nev Power, we don’t need more gas, we need to reserve gas for home use

Comment by Peter Roberts The Chairman of the National Covid-19 Commissio tasked with platting a way forward economically is doing himself, and the gas industry, no favours by peddling self serving twaddle. Appearing before a parliamentary committee this week, Power confirmed his obsession with boosting the gas supply, including through subsidising the construction of gas…

Defence industry must grow fast to keep pace – study

Local defence industry will have to triple in size if it is to maintain, let along increase its share of defence spending as the armed forces re-equip, according to a new study published by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute. The study, the cost of defence 2020–21, argues that One of the biggest implementation risks relates…

Manufacturing should triple its contribution to Australian GDP: Liveris

The final report of the National COVID-19 Commission’s manufacturing taskforce is expected to recommend policy changes including around energy, procurement, and commercialising public R&D work. Brent Balinski spoke to the taskforce’s head, Andrew Liveris, about ways to maximise manufacturing’s contribution in the economic recovery and beyond.

Defence moves into autonomous overdrive

By Peter Roberts Daily the media receives a literal deluge of media releases from the Defence Department and defence and defence industry ministers. It is part of the federal government’s ‘government by announceable’ style, and most are the dolings out of tiny amounts of money on government grant schemes released one at a time. Such…

Maggie Beer rises to the top of the plant food chain

Analysis by Peter Roberts Leading gourmet foodie Maggie Beer appears to have risen to the top yet again, her well known name replacing that of the multi-brand food company which bought her business. In a little noticed development the Longtable Group, which bought the Maggie Beer businesses netting her $25 million in the process, changed…

Call for a practical degree in manufacturing

An open letter to Professor Alex Zelinsky, the Vice Chancellor, University of Newcastle by Dr John Blakemore. We need an institution that offers a degree in manufacturing and practical skills. The ideal place to revive Australia’s manufacturing capability is Newcastle. Over the last 75 years there has been a continuous decline in Australia’s manufacturing capability…

Australian purchasing habits still the biggest challenge for growing bioplastics maker

The increased attention to plastic waste in the last few years has been unmissable. Just before the pandemic disrupted life, the country held its first National Plastics Summit on March 2, with hundreds of millions of dollars in investments pledged by companies to address the problem.  

ATO may deny R&D offset on JobSeeker payments

By Kris Gale The ATO has released Draft Taxation Determination TD 2020/D1, setting out how the ‘at-risk rule’ (section 355-405 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997) applies to JobKeeper payments received by a company conducting activities eligible for the R&D Tax Offset. In short, the ATO is of the view that eligible R&D activities…

Economic rationalists strike back – why do we need manufacturing?

On the same day that there was good news from the National Covid-19 Coordination Commission – it is recommending a revival in manufacturing – the economic rationalists are hitting back, trying to block any advance for the vital sector. First, the commission taskforce on manufacturing – Channel 9 media has a leaked copy of the…