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Monday, 30 November 2015
Page: 14065


Ms HENDERSON (Corangamite) (14:44): My constituency question is to the Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science. One of the biggest issues for my constituents in Corangamite is jobs. There is strong growth in some sectors, but the biggest challenge is in manufacturing. How will our government's decision to establish an industry growth centre in advanced manufacturing at Deakin University campus in Waurn Ponds and other investments help drive a wave of smart manufacturing jobs across Corangamite?

Mr PYNE (SturtLeader of the House, Minister for Industry and Innovation and Science) (14:44): I thank the member for Corangamite for her question. I can confirm to her that Geelong has been an area which is moving from an old economy approach around heavy manufacturing to a new economy including advanced manufacturing and high-tech industries. The member for Corangamite has been at the forefront of supporting, and lobbying for support for, her particular part of Victoria and has been very successful. Recently, she and I launched the latest round of the Geelong Region Innovation and Investment Fund: $11.2 million worth of grants to seven different businesses. She is quite right that the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre has recently established a node at the Deakin University campus in Waurn Ponds, which is the base of their advanced manufacturing industry growth centre. So Geelong is (1) being well served by the member for Corangamite and (2) seeing the very real effects of the government's commitment to and investment in advanced manufacturing and high-tech industries, not only at the Advanced Manufacturing Growth Centre at Deakin University in Waurn Ponds but also in terms of the GRIIF, the Geelong Region Innovation and Investment Fund. Recently at Jeff Sykes's business, Sykes Racing, we announced a $135,000 grant that will impact on 11 new jobs in Geelong around an advanced manufacturing facility. At Air Radiators, we also announced a $3.3 million grant which will lead directly to the creation of 30 jobs and allow Air Radiators to create a new purpose-built factory that will replace products coming from overseas—products that they are currently competing with—with Australian made domestic products, which is very good news for Geelong.

This all plays into the government's wider innovation and science agenda, through which we are directing the economy beyond mining and agriculture towards new areas in advanced manufacturing and high-tech industries. This particularly impacts on areas such as Port Kembla in the member for Gilmore's electorate, but it also impacts in other areas such as in South Australia, in Geelong, across Victoria and in Tasmania. We will soon have announcements to make about Tasmania and their growth fund, which we will roll out across Tasmania. Next week, we will get the opportunity to announce the national innovation and science agenda.

Opposition members interjecting

Mr PYNE: I am sorry that the opposition does not care about innovation and science, but the reality is we see it as a terrific opportunity to create jobs and growth, because this side of the House is focused on jobs and growth. Jobs and growth are all we care about, not the muckraking that we are about to see from— (Time expired)