"If, as appears likely, the Palaszczuk Government returns to power, it should use its mandate to energise the State and create a stronger forward program of state-building activity," Ai Group Queensland Head Shane Rodgers said today.
"Whatever the outcome, we cannot afford the Government to govern like it has a slim majority. We need a bold and decisive 20-year plan to give Queensland back its 'ring of confidence'.
"At the same time, the Government needs to be mindful of the growing dissatisfaction with the major parties and to work harder to assure the people of the State that it is really listening to their needs and concentrating on the right issues.
"To create the conditions for this, the incoming Government needs to:
- Work with the energy industry and the Federal Government to make the State competitive on energy pricing as part of a suite of policy and taxation measures to make the State more competitive for investment.
- Develop a realistic approach to the evolution towards sustainable energy that recognises the needs of industry, the affordability imperative and the need to achieve a sustainable future without destroying economic growth and driving industry offshore.
- Work with industry and the education & training sector to ensure the State has the skilled workforce needed to fuel future expansion of existing industries as well as emerging industries. This will require strengthening the supply of STEM skills, lifting language, literacy & numeracy levels, and of course expansion of the apprenticeship system. Ongoing collaboration with industry to identify and develop skills for the Fourth Industrial Revolution and digital age must be a priority.
- Give a high priority to supporting Queensland's emerging advanced manufacturing sector as it evolves from traditional factory floors to high-tech, high-skilled operations using technology and smart thinking to be globally competitive.
- Work in partnership with private enterprise to identify and develop crucial infrastructure that will drive economic growth and underpin activity.
- Develop a bipartisan approach to the rules around investment and major projects so business can have certainty and the State does not look indecisive and unreliable to outside investors.
- Truly capitalise on Queensland's proximity to growth markets in the Asia Pacific to drive new investment, tourism and major events, as well export opportunities.
- Take advantage of the Northern Australia strategy to explore new opportunities to energise the State's north and ride the growth in tropical economies.
"The State also needs to get serious about creating the conditions to re-energise the manufacturing sector and incubate a new generation of technology-powered businesses that can drive exports and scale globally.
"Regaining its economic leadership mantle will require Queensland to exercise some bigger thinking and bolder bets on major infrastructure projects, including more effective mechanisms to activate market-generated proposals to ensure they are not suffocated in bureaucracy.
"Ai Group also looks forward to working with the State Government to seek revisions to various pieces of legislation developed during the last term of government that we believe require scrapping or amendment," Mr Rodgers said.
Shane Rodgers – 0423 021 268