"Breezway is a great example of a company that has very successfully transitioned from traditional manufacturing to having an advanced manufacturing focus. The company is at the forefront of louvre window technology and design with a constant stream of product improvements flowing from their Brisbane-based R&D Centre.
"Leveraging expertise gained from working over many years with Queensland’s unique subtropical climate, combined with significant investment in R&D including a dedicated R&D team with facilities including 3D modelling and CAD, Breezway have been first to market internationally with a number of significant product innovations which now hold international patents, including their award-winning Powerlouvre Window. This has driven growth both domestically and in export sales for the company, successfully differentiating it from its competitors.
"Acting Premier Pitt has given the Commission firm directions to focus on job creation and Breezway shows what can be achieved locally.
"We also welcome the Acting Premier's request that the Commission focus on advanced manufacturing as well as the attention it gives to areas of traditional strength in manufacturing in Queensland. In reality these two dimensions overlap with many businesses in traditional manufacturing industries clearly qualifying as 'advanced manufacturers' – and Breezeway is an example of such a company. It also demonstrates that all manufacturers can become advanced manufacturers.
"The Government has previously demonstrated its commitment to manufacturing including through the identification of manufacturing as a priority industry sector in the State; the development of a future roadmap for advanced manufacturing; and the allocation of research funding under the Advance Queensland Innovation Partnerships program recently announced by Minister Leeanne Enoch.
"Breezway is just one of many highly innovative manufacturing companies that are doing exceptionally well globally. The Commission's inquiry will help provide advice on direction on boosting the enormous potential for manufacturing and lifting the broader sector to operate at a similar level. If we can achieve this the benefits for the Queensland economy will be significant.
"Manufacturing is already the third largest employer of full-time workers in the state contributing $19 billion to the State's economy and employing over 160,000 people.
"Ai Group's membership in Queensland includes businesses from a diverse range of manufacturing industries and we look forward to drawing on this considerable experience and expertise in shaping our input into this important review. To this end we will be consulting closely with members in assisting the Queensland Productivity Commission to conduct its investigation and prepare its report.
"Manufacturing has a fantastic future in Queensland and industry and governments need to work closely together through mechanisms such as this to leverage the sector's full potential," Ms Dunn said.
Further comment: Jemina Dunn – 0407 266 482