How the Australia Manufacturing Sector Is Rising Again After the Pandemic — InfraBuild CEO Vik Bansal

Even after the outbreak, Australia is only just beginning to recover. In Bansal’s opinion, the country will not see major investment in the manufacturing sector for years, which will result in a crisis of low-skilled labor. As a result, he believes that the country must look toward the manufacturing industry to provide the manpower it needs in order to expand the industry as a whole.

How can Australia avoid long-term dependency on foreign imports?

One of the greatest misconceptions about Australia is that it has a strategic dependence on imports. Over 90 percent of Australia’s energy, and a quarter of its mineral and agricultural exports, goes to other nations. This reliance has been a problem for some time, particularly with the Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation meeting on the horizon this year. Vik: If we want to avoid dependency on foreign supplies, and export our goods, we need to build a strong manufacturing and steel sector. Currently, manufacturing is actually our largest export sector, producing more than $134 billion. We need to get our goods off the world market, and focus on exporting them locally. A strong steel manufacturing sector is the foundation of that.

Manufacturing in Australia

Australia is currently experiencing a shortage in skilled labor and is in need of jobs, particularly in the manufacturing sector. However, according to Mr. Bansal, there is a major problem with Australian manufacturing, in that it relies on low-skilled workers. While this is often attributed to a low minimum wage, high unemployment, and the availability of a skilled workforce, the main issue lies in the fact that these low-skilled workers are not being trained for the work they are being asked to do. For instance, a 2003 study on the cost effectiveness of apprenticeships determined that education of low-skilled workers in Australia is only an average of $2.88 per hour, and this amount does not include the costs of having to pay someone else to do the job.

Vik Bansal, CEO of Vik Bansal InfraBuild, has had a long career in the industry and he sees plenty of potential in the future for Australia’s manufacturing sector. He believes that if we can get through this pandemic and rebuild our infrastructure, there will be plenty of opportunities for companies like InfraBuild to thrive in the future. The company specializes in custom design and manufacture of building products such as concrete slabs, pipes, metal roof frames, steel structures etc.

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