On the 23rd of August ASI Chief Executive, Mark Cain, attended two important meetings in Canberra in the lead up to the Federal Government's Jobs and Skills Summit to be held this week on 1 and 2 September.
The first roundtable meeting was chaired by Senator the Hon Tim Ayres, Assistant Minister for Manufacturing and Assistant Minister for Trade looking at special Jobs and Skills for Australian Heavy Industry.
Senator Ayres said "For existing heavy industry- big users of gas and electricity- the issues of energy price and supply are front of mind today, but the focus of the Jobs and Skills Summit is on making sure Australians have the right skills for the jobs of the future, and that industry is creating good, secure and well-paid jobs and lifting national productivity."
While much of the discussion was about future requirements, ASI emphasised current skilled labour shortfalls that members are experiencing. ASI also stated that current high energy costs are stressing businesses and may jeopardise jobs.
The second meeting was a mini jobs summit hosted the Hon Chris Bowen, Minister for Climate Change and Energy and Assistant Minister for Climate Change and Energy Jenny McAllister.
The meeting brought together key stakeholders to help deliver good energy jobs for now and the future. The Climate and Energy Jobs Summit examined the investment required and the pipelines that need to be created. Minister Bowen said "Australia is on the path to becoming a renewable energy superpower and with that comes the potential for high-skill, high-paying sustainable jobs in industries such as renewable manufacturing, green hydrogen, offshore wind and energy efficiency".
ASI stressed the need for sovereign capability in renewable energy enabling infrastructure such as wind towers, solar farms and transmission towers.