To build a resilient modern manufacturing, ATSE put forward three broad recommendations: a focus on building a STEM-skilled workforce at all levels, leveraging off the economy-wide transformation that decarbonisation will require, and using effective policy levers to boost domestic manufacturing.
Manufacturing is not just physical fabrication. It begins with research and development (R&D) and continues through to recovery and recycling. A thriving manufacturing sector can therefore have economy-wide benefits. However, to take full advantage, the right settings and ecosystem need to be in place to allow businesses to flourish.
Australia already has strong foundations and natural advantages in sectors such as renewable energy, medical products, and recycling. Emerging sectors, including Industry 4.0 equipment and beyond, and rich Indigenous engineering knowledge, represent golden opportunities for Australian manufacturing to establish global leadership. In all sectors, STEM skills are crucial, and connecting research and businesses should be a priority to building and maintaining a competitive advantage.