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Thursday, 3 June 2021
Page: 103


Mr GEORGANAS (Adelaide) (11:43): My state of South Australia has consistently had the highest unemployment rate in the country over the last few years. We've lost our manufacturing capabilities through General Motors Holden, which provided good jobs for people for many, many years. When you think of how we ended up losing that industry, it is a real shame that we had a government at the time in 2013-14 that basically goaded Holden out of Australia. Holden was a manufacturing hub. It was one of the centrepieces of car manufacturing in the world, one of 13 places in the world that could deliver a motor vehicle from design to the salesroom. There were only 13 countries in the world, and we've lost that. We continue to lose manufacturing, all the manufacturing that would feed in and provide parts et cetera.

What we've seen with this Morrison government is that they're doing nothing to create good jobs, full-time work with decent pay, for South Australians. We've seen a Liberal government in South Australia that's lost the plot and is not showing any interest.

We heard that JobMaker was going to be the centrepiece of this government's budget last year, that it was going to create 450,000 jobs. That was the sales pitch. That was the marketing pitch that we heard from the Prime Minister. That was the promise that was made at the last budget. But they've only created 1,000 jobs that they can show for. I can tell you there are hardly any in South Australia. There are hardly any in the suburbs of Adelaide. Again, it's a great sales and marketing technique by this government. They've brought the art of marketing and selling into perfection. If only they could do the same with actually delivering. Unfortunately, in the delivering part it is zero. Of course, the Prime Minister's career before coming into this place was marketing and sales.

But who suffers? Hard-working Australians who just want good, secure jobs. We have one of the longest periods of stagnant growth, negative wages, low productivity that this country has seen and it's not good for the economy. To top this off, I read in the front page of the Adelaide Advertiser today that thousands of future SA based jobs and billions of dollars of investment—that we could lose the Future Submarine project. There are jobs that were supposed to be created by the subs. It has been underway for five years. It is to build 12 Attack class submarines. More than 250 people were already employed there.

We need some clarity from the government. I know that he's going off to the G7. He said that he would meet with the Prime Minister of France. We need the Prime Minister to come back with clarity to guarantee that those jobs will remain and to stop this uncertainty being spread. The federal government must make it clear for the sake of the Australian defence businesses and for South Australians. Otherwise, how can companies have faith in this Liberal government, both the state Marshall Liberal government and the federal Morrison government, and make a decision to invest in my state of South Australia if this uncertainty is constantly maintained?

As I said, with the Prime Minister about to leave for the overseas trip, as part of the G7, South Australians demand that he returns with a clear commitment about the troubled Attack class submarine project and the future of these essential South Australian jobs that were meant to be the panacea for everything after GMH shut. The defence department has already confirmed a plan B. We want to know what that plan B is for the sake of those jobs in South Australia. We know there have been tensions between Naval Group and the defence department. It's about time that the defence department fixed this and made sure that we make a commitment to keeping those jobs and getting this project on the way. The state opposition leader, Peter Malinauskas, has been out there fighting for these jobs. We haven't heard boo from the state Premier Mr Marshall. When you compare the former Labor government in South Australia: Jay Weatherill, together with the Labor opposition, fought tooth and nail to make sure that we got that project in South Australia to create some jobs— (Time expired)