Manufacturing News

Manufacturing news briefs – stories you might have missed

Manufacturing News

Bushmaster armoured vehicles arrive in Fiji

The Minister for Defence Industry Pat Conroy has taken to social media to celebrate the successful export of Thales‘ Bendigo, Victoria manufactured Bushmaster Infantry Mobility Vehicles. Conroy released photographs of the vehicles on the ground in Fiji (pictured) and said: “Great to see 14 Australian made bushmasters delivered to Fiji. The delivery of these Bushmasters is a tangible demonstration of our renewed and elevated Vuvale Partnership which is based on trust and listening closely to each other.” The sale was announced as part of $68 million in aid announced for Fiji and will facilitate Fijian deployments to peacekeeping operations around the world.

Capral adds to environment credentials, joining the Infrastructure Sustainability Council

Aluminium products manufacturer Capral Aluminium has announced its membership with the Infrastructure Sustainability Council (ISC). Capral is a pioneer of lower-carbon aluminium, with its LocAl lower carbon aluminium officially listed on the ISC’s ISupply database. This inclusion allows LocAl to contribute towards the IS Rating Scheme, an industry-recognised framework for evaluating sustainability in infrastructure projects. Capral Aluminium’s Managing Director and CEO Tony Dragicevich said: “At Capral, responsible procurement strategies and sustainable sourcing are not just industry buzzwords, but essential practices. Our LocAl low carbon aluminium is a testament to our efforts in providing market-leading, sustainable aluminium solutions.”

UN declares 2025 the International Year of Quantum

The United Nations (UN) declared 2025 as the International Year of Quantum Science and Technology (IYQ). IYQ will showcase the contributions of quantum science to technology and culture. A key focus will be strengthening national capacities in science education. Individuals and groups from around the world are encouraged to contribute by sponsoring events, including creating resources that help people understand the importance of quantum technologies. You can find out more at a briefing and reception hosted by the Australian Academy of Science at the Shine Dome in Canberra on 18 July.

Apprentice and trainee numbers down as commencements returning to normal – NCVER

New data released by the National Centre for Vocational Education Research (NCVER) indicate that apprentice and trainee commencements are returning to historical patterns. The Apprentices and trainees 2023: December quarter report shows there were 343,640 apprentices and trainees in-training at the end of the December 2023, an 32,980 or 8.8 per cent decrease when compared with December 2022. This is a continuation of the decline seen immediately after the COVID era Boosting Apprenticeships Commencements (BAC) scheme came to an end. The number of apprentices and trainees in-training has been declining since the BAC scheme ceased and are now returning to historical trends. Commencements in the December quarter 2023 of 35,240 were consistent with the median number of commencing contracts across the last eight December quarters from 2015 (35,230).

Cann Group receives final payment for excess equipment

Medicinal cannabis grower and manufacturer Cann Group has received $1.65 million, being the final instalment of a plant and equipment sale agreement with Biortica Agrimed. The sale was for a range of plant and equipment, surplus to Cann’s needs. Two smaller instalment payments were received during the period between the sale date and the latest receipt.

AROSE achieves huge response to STEM offerings

Australia’s mission to put a lunar rover on the Moon is boosting space and STEM training and education, with the Trailblazer lunar rover mission inspiring students to pursue studies and careers in space and STEM. According to a statement, there has been a huge response to AROSE’s national education and training programs across all states and student levels. The first AROSE intern at Fugro SpAARC Lorian Marshall said the internship had helped her discover where she wants to go with her career. AROSE CEO Leanne Cunnold said robotics, automation and digital intelligence would radically transform the employment marketplace in the coming years and that students need to gain the appropriate skills to make them ‘future-proof’ in the workforce.

New Queensland Energy System Advisory Board

The Queensland government has announced a new independent technical advisory body, the Queensland Energy System Advisory Board (QESAB) to smooth and coordinate the state’s energy transformation. The new Board will be led by Leeanne Bond – a Queensland professional engineer who has helped shape some of the nation’s most important green energy projects. Ms Bond is an Independent Non-Executive Director on Aurecon Limited, Entry Limited and CRC One Basin Limited. Other members include solicitor Mark Carkeet, the Chief Engineer of Energy Queensland Peter Price and the CEO of Powerlink Professor Paul Simshause.

VVMF hires CEO

The new Viral Vector Manufacturing Facility at Westmead, which aspires to be “a leading commercial viral vector contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO)”, has announced the appointment of Stephen Thompson as its inaugural CEO. “Mr. Thompson brings extensive leadership and management experience to VVMF with a strong global track record in Enterprise Leadership, Manufacturing and Operations, Commercial, Business Development and Alliance Partnerships,” the facility’s page posted on Linkedin. According to an announcement in February on the VVMF’s establishment by the NSW government, Stage 1 of the facility is operational for use in gene therapy research, with the first clinical trial anticipated to commence in 2025 using vectors from the VVMF, with Stage 2 currently under construction and once completed will provide NSW with commercial-scale viral vector manufacturing.

Australian Parliamentary Friends of Hydrogen meeting signals “strong industry commitment”: AHC

The Australian Hydrogen Council (AHC), industry, government and diplomatic representatives gathered in Canberra last week for the second Australian Parliamentary Friends of Hydrogen meeting, co-chaired by Hunter MP Dan Repacholi and Mallee MP, Dr Anne Webster. The meeting followed May’s federal budget, which offered “significant support for the hydrogen and derivatives industries”, said the AHC, though CEO of the group Dr Fiona Simon said the budget measures must be progressed quickly. “The strong industry turnout at our Parliamentary Friends of Hydrogen meeting was a positive signal to the Government and friends of Parliament that the hydrogen industry is serious about achieving policy certainty with projects underway that rely on government support,” said Simon in a statement on Tuesday.

Engineered stone bans take effect

A ban on engineered stone in NSW and other Australian jurisdictions came into force on Monday. According to a statement from the NSW government, the world-leading change prohibiting the use, supply and manufacture of engineered stone fulfilled “a vital election commitment”, acting on the devastating harms of silicosis. All engineered stone products were be banned across Australia on July, as agreed by a meeting of national Work Health and Safety Ministers in December last year. The NSW government  said it will enforce the ban “by putting more SafeWork NSW inspectors on the ground carrying out site visits and issuing penalties to any non-compliant operators”, with a $2.5 million budget boost to help ensure compliance. Acting WHS minister Tara Moriarty said, “Our Government led calls for a ban on manufactured stone alongside workers, unions, medical experts and leading businesses. I want to thank those who campaigned alongside us for this change to protect the lives of workers.”

National Manufacturing Summit returns 

The upcoming 2024 National Manufacturing Summit, to be held in Brisbane on July 31 and August 1, will focus on the practical aspects of manufacturing Australia’s renewable energy revolution, according to organiser Weld Australia. According to the organisation’s CEO Geoff Crittenden, “The sheer scale of the project is enormous. With an anticipated growth in renewable energy generation from 64GW to over 218GW by 2050, the manufacturing sector is at the forefront of this change, presented with unparalleled opportunities and significant challenges. Speakers will include Linda Dobe from the Queensland Department of Regional Development, Manufacturing and Water, Peter Ong from the Electrical Trades Union, Emeritus Professor Dr Roy Green from the University of Technology Sydney, Jim Stanford from The Australia Institute & Centre for Future Work, Queensland manufacturing minister Glenn Butcher, and ACTU National President Michelle O’Neil. More information is available here.

Picture: Pat Conroy/Bushmaster vehicles arrive in Fiji

Share this Story
Manufacturing News

Stay Informed

Go to Top