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Home Policy and Representation Media Centre Media Releases Media Release Archive - 2009

Media Release Archive - 2009

December 2009
Australian PMI®: Manufacturing growth remains modest but currency bites
Manufacturing activity grew for the fourth consecutive month in November with the latest Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) remaining relatively steady, down 0.5 points in November to 51.2.
Ai Group Congratulates New Opposition Leader
"The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) congratulates Tony Abbott on his election as the new Leader of the Opposition," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Rate rise "surprising"
"Today's interest rate rise is surprising," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Rejection of CPRS legislation compounds uncertainty for business
"The failure today of the Senate to pass the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) will prolong, if not compound the uncertainty for business. While it is good to let tempers cool and allow time for clear thought, Ai Group expressed support for the amended Bill and its failure to pass through the Parliament leaves this important policy issue unresolved," Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australian PSI®: Services sector consolidates although pace slows
The services sector remained in positive territory for the second consecutive month in November, according to the Australian Industry Group/Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®).
Stage 4 Award Modernisation decision Full Bench addresses employer concerns
"Today's Full Bench decision of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission has addressed the major concerns expressed by the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) about the draft modern awards released in September for the 4th and final stage of the award modernisation process," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australian PCI®: Construction falls as demand weakens
The national construction industry contracted in November, following a drop in new orders, a weakening in activity and a fall in employment, according to the latest Australian Industry Group/Housing Industry Association Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®).
High-level team to help Queensland stay ahead of growth
Premier Anna Bligh today announced a high-level advisory team to help Queensland tackle the challenges of population growth.
Approach to asset sales a winning formula for Queensland taxpayers
“The Queensland Government’s approach to the sale of Queensland Rail, the Port of Brisbane, Queensland Motorways and Abbott Point Coal Terminal achieves the appropriate balance between boosting the State’s economic prosperity, achieving the best return for the Queensland taxpayer and allowing the Government to focus on its core tasks,” Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Ai Group comment on National Accounts
"Today's national accounts show the economy just keeping its nose in front," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Copenhagen at best maintains momentum towards climate change deal
"While falling short of expectations, at best the outcome from Copenhagen will maintain momentum towards a global deal to address climate change. For business, a global deal is essential if we are to have an effective outcome that does not disadvantage industry in Australia," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said.

November 2009
Ai Group Welcomes Commitment on Joint Strike Fighter
The announcement by Senator Faulkner of the Government's decision to acquire the first batch of 14 F-35 new generation Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) aircraft will create in Australia additional high-skilled jobs, boost leading-edge aerospace technology opportunities and enhance our defence export performance," Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, said today.
Ai Group National Executive Resolution on CPRS Bill
"A meeting of the Australian Industry Group National Executive in Canberra today acknowledged the material improvements made to the Government's Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) and supported passage of the Bill," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
State Referral Bill industry concerns remain but the egg cannot be unscrambled
The Fair Work Amendment (State Referrals and Other Measures) Bill is currently before the Senate and Ai Group recognises the enormous difficulties which will be created if the Bill does not pass this year," Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group Heather Ridout said today.
Ai Group commentary on CPRS as appeared in The Australian Nov 20, 2009
With its colourful characters, eye-popping sums of money, crucial utilities and the large role for Chance, the emissions trading debate has come to resemble an enormous game of Monopoly. In any game that wears on this long, exasperated players start to wonder why they ever agreed to participate.
Queensland economic future communiqué
Four peak industry bodies are backing the Queensland Government’s decision to shore up the state’s economic future through the strategic sale of public assets, with returns from the sale to help pay for the state’s vital $126 billion capital works program.
Ai Group's Opening Statement - Education, Employment and Workplace Relations Legislation Committee - Fair Work Amendment (State Referrals and Other Measures) Bill 2009 [Provisions]
We welcome the opportunity to express our views on the Fair Work Amendment (State Referrals and Other Measures) Bill.
Scope for productivity gains in manufacturing management
"The findings of the Australian Management Practices and Productivity Global Benchmarking Project released today highlight the need for management practices to keep pace with the complexities of modern workplaces and the demands of the modern economy," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Skills initiative timely and well targeted
"Australia's structural skills shortage is one of the biggest constraints on our future growth and today's action by the Federal Government to support 11,000 additional training places is timely and well targeted," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australian PCI®: modest growth in construction activity continues
The national construction industry continued to grow modestly in October reflecting a rise in building activity, improved employment levels and supplier deliveries, according to the latest Australian Industry Group/Housing Industry Association Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®).
Australian PSI®: Services sector in the black in October
The services sector was in the black in October, driven by a lift in sales and new orders, according to The Australian Industry Group/Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®).
Comment from Australian Industry Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, on MYEFO
"The big surprise of course is that the economy has performed so well. However, given that it did not deteriorate as much as expected and does not have as far to recover, today's economic and fiscal outlook is not surprising," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australian Industry Group expands its confectionery industry services
The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) is expanding its services to members by establishing a confectionery sector within the organisation.
Australian PMI®: Manufacturing growth tentative despite lift in new orders
Manufacturing activity grew for the third consecutive month in October despite losing some of the previous month's gains according to the latest Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®).

October 2009
Business working hard to keep skilled workforce during downturn
The Australian Industry Group/Deloitte CEO survey, Skilling Business in Tough Times, has highlighted the strong pressures on employment and training during the downturn and the efforts by companies to retain and up-skill their staff.
Ai Group Illawarra meeting readies business for carbon cuts
Business leaders from around Wollongong met today to discuss the implications of the Government's proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS), and to consider its impact on individual Illawarra businesses and the region as a whole.
Tough conditions forecast for Engineering and Commercial construction
Tough operating conditions are forecast to continue for the next two years for Australia's construction companies with expected falls in commercial construction and a decline in mining and heavy industrial projects driving down the construction outlook for 2009/10 and 2010/11.
Industry calls for single national regulator for VET
The Australian Council of Trade Unions, the Australian Industry Group, and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry today called on Training Ministers in all States and Territories to proceed, as a priority, with the establishment of a national regulator for the Australian Vocational Education and Training (VET) system as agreed at the April 2009 COAG meeting.
Commercialisation Australia: A Positive Step for Innovation
"Today's announcement by the Federal Government of the establishment of Commercialisation Australia to assist industry bring new ideas and technologies to market is most welcome," Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, said today.
Ai Group Welcomes Negotiations on CPRS
"It's important and welcome that the Federal Opposition now has a mandate to negotiate and an agenda to negotiate around on the Government's proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS)," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Contractors welcome apprenticeship support
The Australian Constructors Association (ACA) today welcomed the Federal Government's announcement of increased support for apprentice commencements over the coming summer.
Ai Group Welcomes Targeted and Timely Support for Trade Apprentices
"The Australian Industry Group welcomes today's announcement of the establishment of a $100 million Jobs Fund allocation as a well targeted and timely measure which will boost apprenticeship commencements," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Contractors release "NGERS" Discussion Paper
The Australian Constructors Association (ACA) today released an Industry Discussion Paper to provide guidance to construction industry organisations with a reporting obligation under the National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Act 2007 (NGER Act).
Ai Group holds SA roundtable on proposed national OHS law
The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) will today (12 October 2009) hold a roundtable discussion for South Australian members on the proposed harmonisation of national OHS laws.
Australian PCI®: Construction activity resumes growth as house building strengthens
The national construction industry returned to modest growth in September 2009 following 18 months of contraction driven largely by stronger demand in the house building sector, according to the latest Australian Industry Group/Housing Industry Association Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®).
Ai Group comment on today's interest rate rise
While the bank's confidence in the economic upturn is encouraging, many businesses will not be convinced of the need for a rate rise," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
September Australian PSI®: Services Sector activity edges higher
Conditions in the services sector edged higher in September, underpinned by a rise in new orders and a lift in supplier deliveries, according to the Australian Industry Group/Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®). The seasonally adjusted Australian PSI® rose by 1.3 points to 49.3 in September, falling just short of the 50.0 level separating expansion from contraction.
September Australian PMI®: Manufacturing holds on to its gains
The continuing modest growth in September was driven by rises in production, inventories and supplier deliveries. Employment in the sector came close to stabilising, falling only slightly, following 20 months of declines. Across the sector, the improvement in manufacturing activity broadened with seven of the twelve sub-sectors growing in September, compared with six in August and four in July.
John Holland Group Tops Construction List for 2008-09
The John Holland Group topped the list of Australia's 100 largest commercial construction companies for 2008-09, a move up from second place the previous year.

September 2009
Coverage of draft Miscellaneous Modern Award requires very careful analysis
“The draft Miscellaneous Modern Award released today by the Australian Industrial Relations Commission needs to be very carefully analysed to ensure that it will not lead to an extension in award coverage and consequent operational and cost difficulties for industry,” Heather Ridout, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group said today.
Business groups on the same page on OHS harmonisation
Leading business and industry groups have joined together in urging all governments to support one system of workplace safety laws at a crucial meeting tomorrow.
Ai Group address to Major Economies Business Forum on Energy Security and Climate Change
Heather Ridout's address to Major Economies Business Forum on Energy Security and Climate Change. Ai Group is a key participant at the Forum being held at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington DC on September 21 and 22.
Ai Group congratulates Kim Beazley and Brendan Nelson
“Ai Group warmly congratulates Kim Beazley and Brendan Nelson on their well deserved diplomatic appointments,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
OHS harmonisation model will raise safety standards across Australia
“The proposed harmonised national OHS laws are based on a successful model that has delivered demonstrably safer workplaces and which will raise safety standards across Australia,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Productivity Commission acknowledges value of Australia's anti-dumping system
“Today’s acknowledgement by the Productivity Commission that a robust anti-dumping system is an important and legitimate component of an open economy is most welcome,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Important amendments need to be made to construction industry bill
“It is disappointing that an issue as comprehensively and exhaustively researched and reviewed as the building industry workplace relations legislation has produced a Senate report today which simply reflects existing entrenched positions. The preservation of the current harmonious and productive environment in the construction industry deserves more than that,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australia's ranking improves in the World Competitiveness Table
"Australia has moved up three places to be ranked 15th out of 133 countries in the World Economic Forum's (WEF) 2009-10 Global Competitiveness Index rankings," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australian PCI®: Pace of decline eases in construction industry
The national construction industry continued to decline in August, although the rate of contraction was less marked than the previous month with the seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group/ Housing Industry Association Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®) rising by 2.9 points to 42.4 (Remaining below the 50 point level separating expansion from contraction).
Australian PSI®: Services Sector activity decline moderates
Services sector activity nudged closer to growth in August with the seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group - Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®) rising by 3.9 points to 48.0 to be 14.4 points above the low of February 2009.
AIRC’s sensible transitional arrangements adopt key Ai Group proposals
“The transitional provisions released today by the Australian Industrial Relations Commission (AIRC) are sensible and adopt a number of key Ai Group proposals,” the Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group, Heather Ridout, said today.
Ai Group comment on National Accounts
“The positive National Accounts figures today are a big achievement in this environment but the big question remains as to whether the recovery is self sustaining,” Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
OHS harmonisation a major priority for Australian Industry
"The OHS harmonisation agenda is a key commitment of all Australian governments through COAG as well as a major priority for industry, and today’s ACTU action is trying to re-open settled arguments," said Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout.
Australian PMI®: Manufacturing activity 'in the black' but employment pressures remain
Manufacturing was in the black in August with activity expanding for the first time in fifteen months according to the seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) which rose by 7.2 points to 51.7.

August 2009
Lifting Literacy and Numeracy in the workplace delivers big productivity gains
"National Literacy and Numeracy Week, which begins today (31 August), is an opportunity to highlight the big productivity gains that can come from lifting literacy and numeracy levels in the workplace," Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Ai Group to appear at Senate Construction Industry Legislation Inquiry in Melbourne
Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive Heather Ridout, will appear tomorrow (Monday 31 August) to give evidence at the Senate Committee Hearing into the Building and Construction Industry Improvement Amendment (Transition to Fair Work) Bill 2009.
Industry welcomes Government's intervention in Horticulture Award Modernisation
“Ai Group welcomes the sensible amendments that have been made to the Award Modernisation Request to address the problems that would be caused by the modern Horticulture Award 2010,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Queensland industry supports streamlining “green tape” for business
“Ai Group strongly supports the Queensland Government’s announcement today to streamline regulations in the environment and energy area” Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Leaders offer promising path for Australia’s long-term economic growth potential
Following the release of the Government's 'Australia's digital economy: Future Directions' paper, The Australian Industry Group and IBM Australia will today release a blueprint outlining what Australia needs to do to enter the next growth phase and build a more sustainable economy.
Time to get down to business on Climate Change Policy
“It is now time to forge an agreement on climate change policy which deals with the very important issues that remain unresolved,” Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Good Faith Bargaining must not be allowed to stop democratic processes
“Bargaining orders must not be allowed to stop employees exercising their democratic right to approve proposed enterprise agreements,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Business Looks Towards the Upturn
One in every six businesses surveyed believed an improvement in business conditions was already underway, with well over half of companies expecting the upturn to be well underway by the first quarter of 2010. This is according to the Australian Industry Group / American Express report released today - Looking Towards the Upturn.
Ai Group welcomes Emissions Report: But urges rejection of 10% Target Proposal
"The Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) report prepared for the Coalition and Senator Xenophon by Frontier Economics seeks to address a number of issues that remain of concern to the business community. However, as with all proposals in the complex area of climate policy, the devil is in the detail. Ai Group will examine these ideas with input from a wide cross-section of our members," said Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout.
Australian PCI®: Further decline in construction activity
There was a further decline in national construction industry activity in July with the seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group/Housing Industry Association Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®) falling by 3.1 points to 39.5.
Australian PSI®: Volatility Continues in Services Sector
The spike in services sector activity was not sustained in July with activity falling back after nudging the growth line in June according to the latest Australian Industry Group - Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®).
The 'smart' future of energy distribution and use
A clear picture of the Australian gas and electricity industry’s response to carbon reduction challenges and consumer demands for greater control over power use will emerge from a major energy conference in Melbourne early next month.
Australian PMI®: Manufacturing slowdown shows signs of stabilising
The decline in manufacturing activity continued to ease for the third consecutive month in July.

July 2009
New apprenticeship plan a mainstreaming of green skills
“Today's announcement by the Prime Minister to equip 30,000 apprentices with green skills in a diversity of trades will contribute to addressing a deficit in our national green skills capability,” Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Photos of the Premier formally launching the Australian Industry Group South Australia branch
The Premier, the Honourable Mike Rann MP, formally launched the Australian Industry Group South Australia branch (formerly EEASA) at the National Wine Centre of Australia on July 28th 2009.
Plan to boost Australian Industry participation is good policy
The Federal Government's "Boosting Australian Industry Participation” plan announced today by Industry Minister Kim Carr is good policy that supports Australian industry to be a more active player in competing for Government tenders," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
"Gearing Up": Ai Group - KPMG Report on Business Preparedness for Climate Change
A major national survey into business readiness for climate change shows that while businesses are beginning the journey of adapting to emerging carbon constraints, there is a lack of understanding about the proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) and a worrying surge in regulation associated with greenhouse gas emissions.
Building Industry Bill needs to be amended or vital reforms could be lost
The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) and the Australian Constructors Association (ACA) are calling for a series of amendments to the Government’s building industry workplace relations legislation, which we regard as essential to ensure that the reforms that have been so vital to the industry are not lost.
Ai Group and QMI Solutions team up for stronger Queensland economy
The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) and QMI Solutions today announced their foundation partnership for the Queensland Government's Toward Q2 - Tomorrow's Queensland vision will concentrate on enhancing the State’s long term vision for economic development as well as providing practical support to Queensland businesses to improve the level of innovation.
Fair Pay Commission decision understandable given economic circumstances
"The Australian Fair Pay Commission’s decision not to increase minimum wages is understandable given the current economic circumstances," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Australian PCI®: Construction continues to decline
The Australian Industry Group – Housing Industry Association Australian Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®) stood at 42.6 in June, down by 4.3 points. It remains below the key 50-point level that separates expansion from contraction.
Australian PSI®: Services Sector Activity Expands after 14 Months Contraction
Services sector activity expanded slightly in June after 14 consecutive months of contraction. The seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group/Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®) for June rose by 10.3 points 50.2, lifting marginally above the 50.0 level separating expansion from the contraction.
Ai Group comment on Share Ownership Scheme Changes
“The new proposals relating to the taxation of employee share schemes involve welcome progress and contain important further changes beyond the revised proposals announced in the Discussion Paper of early June,” Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
The current Anti-Dumping system helps level the playing field
“The Trade Remedies Task Force, chaired by the Australian Industry Group, has used its submission today to the Productivity Commission review of Australia’s anti dumping system to strongly call for support for Australian industry as it struggles to compete against unfair international competition,” Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
PMI®: Manufacturing continues to weaken although pace of decline has eased
Manufacturing activity continued to weaken throughout June although the pace of decline eased slightly. The seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) rose by 0.9 points to 38.4, remaining below the 50.0 level separating expansion from contraction.

June 2009
Fair Work Legislation poses a substantial implementation challenge for business
"With the Fair Work legislation coming into operation from 1 July, employers face substantial challenges in understanding all of the new requirements," Heather Ridout, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group said today.
Tuesday 30 June 2009
Workers Compensation package does not help business
The Victorian Government’s new $90 million workers’ compensation package shows the Government has failed to take account of the impact on industry of the global economic and financial crisis by imposing costs on industry when it could have reduced them by cutting workers’ compensation premiums.
Wednesday 17 June 2009
Building Bill is largely consistent with Wilcox recommendations but industry concerns remain
“While the building industry legislation is largely consistent with the recommendations of the Wilcox Review, industry concerns remain,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Wednesday 17 June 2009
Compulsory interrogation powers are essential for construction industry regulator
“The Federal Government’s announcement today that there will be exemptions available from the coercive interrogation powers of the building industry regulator (the ABCC) is of major concern to industry.
Tuesday 16 June 2009
Commonwealth injection keeps NSW afloat but doesn't hide leaks
“While the economic downturn has played its inevitable part in the New South Wales Budget slipping into deficit by reducing tax revenue, an escalating wages bill, which is largely of the Government’s own making, compounds the fiscal shortfall,” Ai Group NSW Director Mark Goodsell said today.
Tuesday 16 June 2009
Budget of 'give and take' for industry - Ai Group Statement on Queensland Budget
“Today’s Queensland State Budget is a budget of ‘give and take’ for industry. While there is an appropriate focus on building the infrastructure and skills base that Queensland requires in the future, further work is required in providing cost relief to industry,” Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Tuesday 16 June 2009
Comments from Ai Group NSW Director Mark Goodsell on Safe Work Australia Meeting
“We welcome today’s first meeting of Safe Work Australia on which Ai Group is a key representative of business.
Wednesday 10 June 2009
Roads top infrastructure to-do list for Queensland industry
“Improving the State’s roads is the central infrastructure priority for the Queensland Government in next week’s budget if it is to improve the productivity of Queensland industry and help it manage through the economic downturn,” Ai Group Queensland Director, Chris Rodwell said today in releasing a major industry survey detailing infrastructure issues faced by Queensland industry.
Tuesday 09 June 2009
Comment from Ai Group Chief Executive on Share Ownership Scheme proposals
"Ai Group welcomes the release of the discussion paper on the tax treatment of employee share schemes." said Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout.
Friday 05 June 2009
Appointment of John Faulkner as Defence Minister
"The Australian Industry Group and the Ai Group Defence Council congratulate John Faulkner on his appointment today as Minister for Defence," said Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout.
Friday 05 June 2009
Australian PCI®: Fall in construction slows
The national construction industry continued to decline in May, although the rate of contraction was the slowest in the past fourteen months.
Friday 05 June 2009
Australian PSI®: Demand for services remains soft
Australia’s services sector activity contracted for a fourteenth consecutive month with the seasonally adjusted Australian Industry Group - Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®) remaining stable in May at 39.9, up just 0.1 points in the month.
Wednesday 03 June 2009
National Accounts: Good for confidence but a long hard slog ahead
“The positive outcome in today’s National Accounts will provide an important confidence boost but we still face a long hard slog to restore our economic health,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Wednesday 03 June 2009
Industry calls for relief to help offset removal of fuel subsidy
“The Queensland Government should consider a two year reduction in payroll tax and motor vehicle registrations to Queensland businesses to offset the immediate impact of the removal of the fuel subsidy on July 1,” Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Tuesday 02 June 2009
Industry welcomes ambitious program of asset sales
“Ai Group welcomes the Queensland Government’s announcement that it will sell a number of the State’s assets in order to improve the economic prosperity of the State,” Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Tuesday 02 June 2009
Holden has deep pegs in the ground to ensure future in Australia
“Holden has staked a lot of deep pegs in the ground which will support the company being a part of the new GM and to ensure its future in Australia,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 02 June 2009
Australian PMI®: Fall in activity eases slightly
The pace of decline of manufacturing activity eased in May, with the Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) up by 7.4 points to 37.5.
Monday 01 June 2009

May 2009
US Dairy subsidy decision deeply disappointing
“The US Government’s decision to reintroduce dairy export subsidies is a backward step and a bad day for global trade,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said.
Tuesday 26 May 2009
We need to work to get the best emissions trading scheme possible
“From industry’s perspective there is a need to remove the regulatory uncertainty surrounding climate policy as soon as practicable and a need to continue to work to get the best possible emissions trading scheme for Australia,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 26 May 2009
Share ownership scheme should be restored and any changes need to preserve workability
“Ai Group would like to see the previous treatment of share ownership schemes restored and for the Government to ensure that any changes are well targeted and workable,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Thursday 21 May 2009
Time to move forward on uniform national OHS system
“Today’s decision by State and Federal Government’s to accept the majority of the recommendations of the Review Panel appointed to report on the National OHS model laws finally paves the way for a genuinely national OHS system,” Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 19 May 2009
Outlook for further weakening in Engineering and Commercial Construction
Following a sustained period of solid growth, Australia’s leading construction companies are forecasting a marked slowdown in the rate of activity growth through 2009, followed by a decline in 2010.
Monday 18 May 2009
CPRS landfill waste changes a victory for common cause
“The changes announced today by the Parliamentary Secretary for Climate Change, Greg Combet, to the treatment of landfill waste under the proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) are a victory for common sense,” Ai Group Chief Executive Mrs Heather Ridout said today.
Thursday 14 May 2009
Superannuation Ruling on OTE - Industry concerns addressed and billion dollar cost to industry averted
“Ai Group is extremely pleased that the ATO and the Government have listened to industry’s concerns and have decided not to require superannuation contributions to be made on overtime earnings.
Wednesday 13 May 2009
Australian Constructors Association: A Budget that invests in the future
The President of the Australian Constructors Association Mr Wal King, said today that the Budget announcements supporting 15 new road, rail and port projects will give the construction industry a welcome stimulus and provide the nation with important new assets.
Tuesday 12 May 2009
A Budget Supporting Recovery and Renewal
“The Budget supports the economy in these tough times while pushing the re-set button in a number of important areas. These include infrastructure, education, science, innovation and welfare reform,” said Ai Group Chief Executive Mrs Heather Ridout.
Tuesday 12 May 2009
Ai Group welcomes paid maternity leave scheme
The announcement that a paid maternity leave scheme will be included in the Federal Budget is an important reform which is welcomed by the Australian industry Group,” Heather Ridout, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group, said today.
Monday 11 May 2009
Federal Budget "A Matter of Give and Take": Ai Group Budget Priorities
"The difficult task for the Federal Government in next week’s Budget is to manage the “give” needed to support and stimulate the economy and the "take" needed to bring the budget back to surplus and to pare back the debt levels built up to manage through the recession," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Thursday 07 May 2009
Business calls for next generation Asia skills
Leading Australian businesses and industry organisations have joined forces to endorse a call for a greater Asia focus in the education of Australia’s next generation.
Thursday 07 May 2009
Australian PCI®: Construction still slowing
The national construction industry continued to decline in April, although the rate of contraction eased for a second consecutive month.
Thursday 07 May 2009
Australian PSI®: Services sector activity still falling
Activity in Australia's services sector fell again in April, the thirteenth consecutive month the index was below the 50.0 level that separates expansion from contraction.
Tuesday 05 May 2009
Ai Group welcomes changes to CPRS
“The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) welcomes the changes announced today to the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS),” Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Monday 04 May 2009
Defence White Paper a new economic stimulus package
“The Defence White Paper released today gives Australian defence companies the ability to plan for the future with more certainty which will be good for jobs and investment in skills, infrastructure and innovation," the Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group), Heather Ridout, said today.
Monday 04 May 2009
Australian PMI®: Manufacturing fall continues
Australian manufacturing industry output fell for the eleventh consecutive month in April, continuing to trawl uncharted lows.
Friday 01 May 2009

April 2009
COAG jobs and training Compact provides critical action needed to lay foundation for future growth
"The jobs and training Compact with Young Australians announced following today's COAG meeting is a critical set of measures which will help deliver employment opportunities and the skills we will need for future growth," said Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout.
Thursday 30 April 2009
New solutions needed to boost Australia’s skills and raise productivity for economic growth
Fresh approaches to national skills training are urgently needed in order to meet the challenges of the economic downturn and to position Australia for a return to growth and prosperity, according to a consortium of peak industry, trade union and youth advocacy bodies.
Thursday 23 April 2009
Ai Group comment on RBA interest rate decision
“Today’s interest rate cut is an indication that the RBA wants to remain very agile on monetary policy and this is greatly welcomed by business,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 07 April 2009
Broadband Network: A foundation for productivity
“With today’s National Broadband Network announcement, the first stages of the rollout can now commence and Australian businesses and households are that much closer to having widespread access to very fast broadband,” Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) Chief Executive Mrs Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 07 April 2009
Australian PCI®: Construction continues to fall as demand remains subdued
The national construction industry continued to decline in March, reflecting widespread reports of weak market demand and a lack of new project work.
Tuesday 07 April 2009
Award Modernisation - Full Bench addresses employer concerns
"The recent decision of the Full Bench of the Australian Industrial Relations Commission has addressed many concerns pressed by the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) about the draft modern awards released in January for Stage 2 of the award modernisation process," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 07 April 2009
G20 Meeting outcomes need to flow quickly to industry
"The outcome of the G20 Leaders’ meeting in London is a positive and important one for the global economy. It marks important progress in rebuilding confidence in the global economic and financial system and very significantly demonstrates the capacity for international cooperation in this regard," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, said today.
Friday 03 April 2009
Wilcox report recognises need for special approach and structures for the construction industry
“The Wilcox report released today into the transfer of the office of the Australian Building and Construction Commissioner (ABCC) into Fair Work Australia recognises that the building industry reform process remains incomplete and that as a result there is a need for distinct approaches to be adopted for the industry,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Friday 03 April 2009
Australian PSI®: Services sector activity remains weak
Services sector activity remained weak in March, despite a slowing in the rate of contraction relative to the previous month according to the latest Australian Industry Group - Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®).
Friday 03 April 2009
Ai Group welcomes Premier's quick response to issues raised at Jobs Summit
"The New South Wales Government’s plan to maximise employment and investment opportunities recognises that the key contribution the Government can make is to ensure that State and Local Government planning and approval decisions are streamlined and razor sharp," Australian Industry Group NSW Director Mark Goodsell said today.
Thursday 02 April 2009
Australian PMI®: Activity falls again but pace of decline eases
The manufacturing industry continued to deteriorate in March although the rate of decline has eased with the Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) up slightly by 1.7 points to 33.4.
Wednesday 01 April 2009

March 2009
EEASA members vote to merge with Ai Group
The members of the Engineering Employers Association South Australia (EEASA) have voted overwhelmingly in support of a merger with the Australian Industry Group (Ai Group).
Monday 30 March 2009
Ai Group comment on announcement of Productivity Commission Inquiry into Australia's Anti-dumping and Countervailing Policy
"Today’s announcement by the Federal Government of a Productivity Commission inquiry into Australia's anti-dumping and countervailing policy must not lead to an erosion of Australia’s commitment to anti-dumping," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Monday 23 March 2009
Industry welcomes Andrew Fraser's appointment to super economic portfolio
"The Australian Industry Group welcomes the addition of employment and economic development to Treasurer Andrew Fraser’s portfolio," Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Monday 23 March 2009
Minimum Wage Review: Jobs need to be priority
“In these difficult times we must not risk adding to the clear pressures in the labour market. Jobs need to be the priority and Ai Group has strongly argued for the Fair Pay Commission to take a cautious approach this year when considering changes to minimum wages,” Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Monday 23 March 2009
Congratulations to Premier Bligh as Government returns to work
"Ai Group congratulates the Premier, Anna Bligh, and her Government on their historic re-election to govern Queensland," Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Monday 23 March 2009
New Workplace laws pose another big implementation challenge for business
"With the passage of the Fair Work Bill through Parliament employers face big challenges to understand the requirements of the new workplace relations system ahead of the implementation date of 1 July," said Heather Ridout, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group.
Friday 20 March 2009
Australian Industry Group Comment on Federal Government's announcement on executive salaries and Productivity Commission inquiry into "golden handshakes"
“We understand the community concern and there is an argument for companies to take a responsible approach and for shareholders to be vigilant. Most companies are in fact doing so and there’s very clear evidence that many executives and senior staff are now freezing salaries or taking significant pay cuts in response to the current economic climate”, the Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group Heather Ridout said today.
Wednesday 18 March 2009
New responsibilities for Manufacturing Skills Australia
"The announcement by the Deputy Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, that the responsibility for automotive training will be allocated to Manufacturing Skills Australia (MSA), makes conceptual and practical sense and we welcome it," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Wednesday 18 March 2009
Industry supports upgrade of Australia's diplomatic capabilities
The Australian Industry Group today supported the key findings of a Lowy Institute Blue Ribbon Panel which called for renewed investment in Australia’s diplomatic capabilities as part of a broader global engagement to support Australia’s needs and interests.
Wednesday 18 March 2009
Immigration cuts disappointing
"Now is not the time to be cutting back on immigration, one of the drivers of future economic growth," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Monday 16 March 2009
Government amendments to Fair Work Bill are not sufficient to address industry's concerns
"The amendments which the Government has proposed to the Fair Work Bill while making progress in some areas are not sufficient to address industry’s concerns," said Heather Ridout, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group.
Monday 16 March 2009
Australian Industry Group to participate in London G20 business meeting
The Australian Industry Group has been invited to participate in the business leaders’ meeting being hosted in London this week by the British Government and the Confederation of British Industry.
Sunday 15 March 2009
Ai Group welcomes commitment of extra support for local industry
“Ai Group welcomes the policy announced by Premier Anna Bligh today that a Labor State Government would inject additional support to the Industry Capability Network” Ai Group Queensland Director Chris Rodwell said today.
Thursday 12 March 2009
Draft CPRS Legislation falls short on critical issues
"The draft Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) legislation released today falls short on critical issues around the scheme’s start date and measures for trade exposed industries," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 10 March 2009
Korea FTA Talks
"The Australian Industry Group welcomes the Government's decision to begin negotiations on a free trade agreement with Korea", Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said.
Friday 06 March 2009
Australian PCI®: Construction continues to post broad-based industry decline
The national construction industry continued to contract in February at a more rapid rate than the previous month as weak market demand and confidence led to further cutbacks in new project work.
Friday 06 March 2009
Changes to VET and Higher Education Regulation
“The Australian Industry Group welcomes the announcement today by the Deputy Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, of new regulatory and governance arrangements in the Vocational Education and Training (VET) and higher education sectors,” Mrs Ridout said.
Thursday 05 March 2009
Ai Group comment on National Accounts
"The last half of the year was a struggle and according to all indicators conditions in the current quarter have clearly worsened," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today in commenting on the release of the National Accounts.
Wednesday 04 March 2009
Australian PSI®: Falling demand and weak confidence further suppress services activity
Services sector activity slumped further in February with the Australian Industry Group - Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®) falling 8.8 points to 32.2, to remain well below the key 50.0 point level separating expansion from contraction.
Wednesday 04 March 2009
Ai Group comment on RBA interest rate decision
"There is clearly room for further interest rate cuts but the RBA’s decision today to hold off until the impacts from fiscal stimulus measures and earlier rate cuts flow through is understandable," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 03 March 2009
Ai Group meeting with WTO Director General
The Chief Executive of Ai Group, Heather Ridout, today urged the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, Pascal Lamy, to push ahead with completing the Doha Round of global trade talks as quickly as possible in the face of growing global economic uncertainty.
Monday 02 March 2009
Australian PMI®: Activity and employment down as new orders fall and firms run down stocks
In releasing the Australian Industry Group-PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said, "The February Australian PMI® illustrates that the global downturn is intruding more forcefully into the domestic economy.
Monday 02 March 2009

February 2009
Ai Group welcomes Australia-ASEAN-New Zealand Free Trade Agreement
"The signing of the Free Trade Agreement with ASEAN and New Zealand (AANZFTA) is a positive move in relations with our ASEAN neighbours which signals greater integration across the region’s economies," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said.
Friday 27 February 2009
Ai Group welcomes NSW Jobs Summit
"Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) welcomes the decision of the NSW Premier in calling a jobs summit in the face of the risk of significantly higher unemployment in NSW as a consequence of the global downturn," Ai Group NSW Director, Mark Goodsell, said today.
Thursday 26 February 2009
Ai Group National Executive Discussion on Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme
The National Executive of the Australian Industry Group, the association’s national policy making body, announced today that its meeting in Canberra this week had resolved the following in relation to the Federal Government’s proposed Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS)
Thursday 26 February 2009
Ai Group Comment on Pacific Brands Restructuring
The announcement today by Pacific Brands of the closure of the majority of its manufacturing activities and the loss of 1,850 jobs is a big blow to the manufacturing industry in Australia," Said Ai Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout.
Wednesday 25 February 2009
Government's support for retrenched workers is 'spot on'
"Ai Group strongly endorses the Federal Government’s decision to provide immediate employment services to retrenched workers," Australian Industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 24 February 2009
Ai Group comment on Queensland Election
“The top priority for whichever party gains Government at the upcoming State election is to focus on initiatives that ensure Queensland can navigate the current global economic and financial crisis and to emerge stronger,” Ai Group Queensland Director, Chris Rodwell, said today.
Monday 23 February 2009
Jobs and Apprenticeships Package well targeted and very timely
"The jobs and apprenticeships package announced today by the Deputy Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, is well targeted and very timely," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Thursday 19 February 2009
Ai Group statement to Senate Inquiry on Fair Work Bill
Attached is the statement made by the Australian Industry Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, at today’s Sydney public hearings of the Senate Inquiry into the Fair Work Bill
Wednesday 18 February 2009
NSW Government's boost to jobs for young people welcomed
"The NSW Government's plans to boost jobs for young people by employing 4000 more apprentices and 2000 entry level positions for school leavers provides a major impetus to training in the State and is good policy during these tough economic times," Australian Industry Group chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Wednesday 18 February 2009
Award Modernisation - The priority needs to be jobs
"Ai Group has filed a major submission in the award modernisation process which stresses that the priority needs to be jobs," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 17 February 2009
Passage of stimulus Bill an important confidence boost
"Senators have today done the right thing in passing the Federal Government's economic stimulus package which will provide a timely and much needed boost to consumer and business confidence and spending," Australian industry Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Friday 13 February 2009
Ai Group formally welcomes appointment of Justice Giudice as President of Fair Work Australia
"The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) formally congratulates the Hon Justice Giudice on his appointment as the inaugural President of Fair Work Australia," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Friday 13 February 2009
QLD Government's business measures – a win for industry during difficult times
Industry commends the Queensland Government on today's announcements that will ease red tape and costs pressures for many of the State’s businesses during these difficult times, Ai Group Queensland Director, Chris Rodwell, said today.
Thursday 12 February 2009
Completion of Australia-Chile Free Trade Agreement welcomed
"The completion of the Australia-Chile Free Trade Agreement is a very welcome advance for Australia's bilateral trade agenda at a time of global economic uncertainty and will be very warmly welcomed by Australian industry," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 10 February 2009
New Vic Trains a boost to jobs and industry
"The Australian Industry Group has welcomed the Victorian Government's announcement of 20 new trains which will be a boost to the local economy and deliver much needed jobs in Ballarat," Australian Industry Group Victorian Director Timothy Piper said today.
Friday 06 February 2009
Australian PCI®: Construction declines again amid further cutbacks in new project work
The national construction industry registered a further decline in January 2009, as the global economic and financial crisis continued to adversely affect market demand and confidence.
Friday 06 February 2009
Australian PSI®: Fiscal and monetary measures should give timely boost to weak services sector
Persistent weak demand led to a tenth consecutive monthly decline in the services sector, with the Australian Industry Group – Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®) rising slightly by 1.7 points to 41.0, still well below the key 50.0 point level separating expansion from contraction.
Wednesday 04 February 2009
Big day for monetary and fiscal policy – a case of 'all hands on deck'
"The nation building and jobs plan announced by the Federal Government today is simple and substantial, and will provide a big stimulus to help keep the economy moving. Together with the interest rate cut, it has been a big day for monetary and fiscal policy – it's a case of 'all hands on deck'," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Tuesday 03 February 2009
Australian PMI®: Weak orders underpin continued contraction in manufacturing activity
Manufacturing activity contracted for an eighth consecutive month in January, although the rate of decline eased further from the November 2008 record low. The Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) registered 36.6 in January, up by 2.9 points on the previous month but still well below the 50 point level which separates expansion from contraction.
Monday 02 February 2009
2009 set to be the toughest year in decades
A new Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) – Deloitte survey of over 480 CEO’s in the manufacturing, construction and services sectors, has found that 2009 is shaping up to be a tough year
Wednesday 21 January 2009

January 2009
Australian Industry Group proposes package of fiscal measures to address economic crisis
"The Australian Industry Group (Ai Group) today released a package of fiscal measures designed to help the Australian economy weather the global crisis and to emerge from it stronger and more resilient. The organising principle of the submission is that we should aim to align as best we can the necessary shorter term economic stimulus with the longer term imperative to support productivity and growth," Ai Group Chief Executive Heather Ridout said today.
Thursday 29 January 2009
Industry shares the AWU's reported concerns about right of entry laws
Industry shares the concerns expressed by the Australian Workers Union (AWU) today regarding the right of entry provisions of the Fair Work Bill”, Australian Industry Group Chief Executive, Heather Ridout, said today.
Wednesday 28 January 2009
Fair Work Bill needs significant tightening to improve workability
"The Fair Work Bill needs significant tightening to improve its workability", Heather Ridout, Chief Executive of the Australian Industry Group said today.
Monday 19 January 2009
Australian PCI®: Further decline in construction as new business continues to contract
The construction industry registered a further marked decline in December with the Australian Industry Group – Housing Industry Association Performance of Construction Index (Australian PCI®) falling 1.1 points to 30.9 to remain below the critical 50 points level separating expansion from contraction for a tenth consecutive month.
Thursday 08 January 2009
Australian PSI®: Weak demand leads to a further decline in services
Persistent weak demand led to a ninth consecutive monthly decline in the services sector, with the Australian Industry Group – Commonwealth Bank Performance of Services Index (Australian PSI®) rising marginally by 1.5 points to 39.3 to remain below the key 50.0 point level separating expansion from contraction.
Tuesday 06 January 2009
Australian PMI®: Manufacturing activity ends year on weak note
Manufacturing activity has ended the year on a weak note, falling for a seventh consecutive month. The Australian Industry Group - PricewaterhouseCoopers Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index (Australian PMI®) registered 33.7 in December, up by an albeit modest one point on the previous month.
Friday 02 January 2009

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