Deloitte Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index: What must Australia do?DOWNLOAD
Monday, 25 October 2010: In order for Australian manufacturers to remain globally competitive over the next five years they need to focus on establishing linkages into global, especially regional supply chains in the areas of innovation, R&D, engineering and design according to Deloitte Manufacturing Partner, Damon Cantwell.
A recent benchmarking report from Deloitte and the U.S Council on Competitiveness, highlights that Australia will remain stagnant at number 15 in the current competitiveness index and is not expected to gain ground against other national economies over the next five years.
“This study forecasts changes in global manufacturing centres over the next five years. The opportunity exists for Australian companies and government to position themselves to take advantage of this,” said Mr Cantwell.
“Competitiveness of our manufacturing sector is critical to long-term economic prosperity, growth and is an essential path for attracting investments, spurring innovation and creating high-value jobs. Australia needs to create the most compelling opportunities to innovate using a highly-skilled workforce in order to move up the competitiveness index over the next five years,” said Mr Cantwell.
The findings of this benchmark report come from the responses of more than 400 worldwide chief executive officers and senior manufacturing executives to a detailed survey conducted in late 2009 and early 2010. It also draws on select interviews with key manufacturing decision makers.
What must Australia do?
The study predicts that the global epicentre of manufacturing will continue to be the Asia-Pacific region.
“Asia continues to present opportunities for Australian manufacturing. Identifying the best ways to link into this supply chain, whether that be through the export of design or engineering services, or technological advancement, will reap benefits for Australian manufacturers. This combined with the right messaging and positioning of Australia’s profile will assist in shifting our competitiveness ranking,” said Mr Cantwell.
“This study highlights the importance of Australia needing a globally competitive manufacturing sector in order to encourage investment and create interesting jobs that spill over into other sectors such as financial services, infrastructure, development and maintenance, customer support, logistics, healthcare, education and training, reals estate and IT,” said Mr Cantwell.
The study indicates that manufacturers in the 21st century have the ability to locate in any part of the world they believe will help them achieve competitive advantage and best serve their customer base.
“Australia can capitalise on Asia’s manufacturing competitiveness and growth by taking the opportunity to tap into its supply chain capabilities, working to complement these Asian manufacturers,” added Mr Cantwell.
Importantly, the report highlights key roles for both industry players, and governments in regard to creating the right environment to support manufacturing.
For Australia, this means addressing the profile that it builds for itself as a global manufacturer.
It must focus on innovation, while continuing to promote its advantages in relation to higher value-add activities and advanced manufacturing. Government policies and promotion should position Australia’s capabilities to participate in global supply chains, and individual companies must continue to forge business in this regard,” Mr Cantwell concluded.
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