The ASI has welcomed the Queensland Government’s stated commitment ahead of the public rally in Brisbane on 30 November to adopt policies aimed at having major resource and infrastructure projects clearly disclose details of commitment to local content.

Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for State Development and Trade, Andrew Fraser and Minister for Tourism, Small Business and Manufacturing, Jan Jarratt jointly announced plans in State Parliament today to expand the Government’s Local Industry Participation Policy to apply to major private sector projects subject to Environmental Impact Statement approvals process.

ASI State Manager – QLD & NT, John Gardner said that if implemented, the Government’s policy changes would help address calls by the joint industry-trade union Queensland Jobs for Queensland Resources campaign over recent months to facilitate fairer opportunities for local contribution to major development projects.

The campaign, initiated by the ASI, joined together with five other industry bodies and the Queensland branch of the Australian Manufacturers Workers Union.

The group has been advocating for all major resources projects to be required to each have a local industry participation plan and provide regular reports to the Government on their performance in involving local engineering, detailing and fabrication businesses in their projects.

We have also recommended that local industry participation plans for major resources projects and their regular performance reports be made public to enable an informed public debate about the local benefits flowing from the use of our natural resources.

“We are pleased the State Government has listened to our concerns and we welcome today’s announcement as a positive first step,” said ASI Chief Executive Don McDonald.

“Our recommendations are well in keeping with Australia’s WTO obligations and do not seek any mandating of local content quotas, but seek better transparency on major project procurement.

“We look forward to working with the Government to ensure these reforms urgently deliver for local businesses and workers. The campaign’s other recommendation is for major projects to be required to specify to Australian standards and we ask for, at the very least the Government’s in-principle support for that.”