Labour Force Skills Part of Productivity Jigsaw
Thursday 19 July, 2012
Statement by Peter Anderson, Chief Executive
The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, representing employers from every state and territory and every sector of the economy, has warmly welcomed today’s announcement of the Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency.
After the Agency was launched by Minister for Tertiary Education and Skills Chris Evans and Agency Chairman Phil Bullock, ACCI Chief Executive, Peter Anderson called for support across the federation and the Parliament for its charter and funding base.
Mr Anderson, together with colleagues from industry, unions and the vocational skills sector, is a member of the Agency.
"Making the labour market more efficient by matching skills to available jobs and by increasing workforce participation is a crucial piece of Australia’s productivity jigsaw. Industry isn’t happy with key aspects of workplace regulation, but the Australian government is on the right track with its support for skills development. Broadening the role of this Agency to advise on industry needs is a step in the right direction."
"A strong, clear industry voice is needed to create the impetus for change in vocational education and training to create a truly industry driven system."
"Releasing the Agency’s first discussion paper, Australia's Skills and Workforce Development Needs, sets the right tone to help industry plan ahead with some hope that the training system will work with the private sector to lift the capability of current and future employees."
"ACCI encourages business organisations to respond to the discussion paper: “The new Agency, and its role in administering the National Workforce Development Fund, provides an excellent opportunity for industry to see research and training funding directed to where they can be most beneficial for employers and the economy. Active input from industry will help keep the Agency and the sector on its toes, and make sure training is directed at real jobs and real careers, not just training for training sake."
"State and territory governments play an important role with industry in vocational training. Support for the Agency from across the federation will make it more likely that trade skills will be recognised across borders, and impediments to labour mobility will ease. Our uneven economy and our low productivity rates compel us to do better on both fronts."
"The Australian Workforce Productivity Agency brings together key leaders and thinkers from both industry and academia to set a clear direction for training and workforce development in Australia. That’s a national interest goal which should be above and beyond political differences."
Bipartisan support for domestic skills development also fosters a more rational debate about targeted labour migration programmes filling skill gaps. "In a week when we have again seen controversy over the potential engagement of workers from overseas, the contribution of both vocational training and skilled migration to an efficient labour market needs to be championed."
For More Information:
ACCI Chief Executive Peter Anderson 0417 264 862
ACCI Director of Employment, Education and Training Jenny Lambert 0418 277 919
ACCI Director of Communications David Turnbull 0419 272 802