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Chemistry Australia welcomes the Australian Government Modern Manufacturing Strategy announcement - 1 October 2020

Chemistry Australia, the peak national body representing Australia’s chemicals and plastics industries, has welcomed the Australian Government’s “Modern Manufacturing Strategy” announced today at the National Press Club.

CEO of Chemistry Australia, Samantha Read, said the Australian Government’s $1.5 billion plan provides a clear path for the Australian manufacturing industry and will contribute to a stronger economy that delivers benefits for business and the community.

“It’s the wholistic and sophisticated approach that a highly interdependent sector such as Australian manufacturing needs to be globally competitive in the 21st century. It recognises that in order to attract investment in manufacturing, Australia must have competitive business conditions such as energy, balanced regulation, skills, taxation and IR, as well as access to global markets.

“The chemistry industry is the third largest manufacturing sector in the Australian economy,” said Ms Read. “Australian manufacturing will play a key role in economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, and we are confident this new strategy will help to improve conditions for manufacturing the materials and products Australia needs to emerge from recession.”

“Improving supply chains for chemicals and plastics, as well as other materials and products, is crucial to ensuring we build national resilience to any future global shocks,” Ms Read said.

The chemistry sector manufactures and supplies raw materials and other products for 108 of Australia’s 114 industries. This includes the priority areas identified by the Australian Government where building additional scale will be crucial to global competitiveness, such as: 

  • Explosives, reagents and water treatment for the resources and critical minerals sector
  • Fertilisers, crop protection and recyclable packaging for food and beverages,
  • Polymers and medical gasses that enable medical products,
  • Product design and recyclable polymers that increase recycling and assist clean energy outcomes,
  • High performance materials that protect Australians and their equipment in the defence and space industries.

The chemistry industry underpins more than 212,000 full-time jobs and contributes more than $38 billion to Australia’s GDP.

“As an essential supplier into the water, food, medical and pharmaceutical, energy and mining, industrial and medical gas sector, we recognise the importance of retaining on-the-ground capability in Australia to help grow a stronger economy and stronger communities,” Ms Read said.

“Chemistry Australia looks forward to working collaboratively with like-minded companies and countries, and contributing to this strategy to deliver increased employment, investment certainty and stronger sovereign capability by growing Australian manufacturing.”


Media contacts:

Shayna Welsh – [email protected] or 0448 660 443

Chemistry Australia is the pre-eminent national body representing the Australian chemistry industry, one of the largest manufacturing sectors in the country. The industry supports more than 212,000 full time jobs and contributes more than $38 billion to Australia’s GDP. Members of Chemistry Australia are positioned across the entire value chain including manufacturers, importers and distributors, logistics and supply chain partners, raw material suppliers, fabricators, compounders, recyclers, research, academia and service providers to the industry. These businesses range from small family-owned companies to leading national and multinational enterprises.


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