Made in Newcastle: Tonnes to Be Gained from Hunter Manufacturing

NSW Labor is calling on the Berejiklian Government to guarantee Hunter-sourced services and materials are prioritised during construction of the $11 billion Western Sydney Airport rail line and other fast-tracked projects

The Deputy Labor Leader, Yasmin Catley, said it’s an important opportunity for the State to overhaul procurement practices to help kick-start the NSW economy.

“Since 2011, successive NSW Liberal/National governments have sent local jobs offshore, awarding contracts worth billions of dollars to overseas manufacturers” Ms Catley said.

They have purchased:

  • Ferries from China and Indonesia
  • Buses from Malaysia
  • Trains from South Korea and China
  • Metros from India
  • Light rail vehicles from France and Spain
  • Imported steel for the International Convention Centre and Sydney Metro

In unveiling Labor’s Local Procurement policy, Ms Catley added: “The Berejiklian Government wants to take $3 billion from workers’ wages.  The Premier had better be damn sure this project benefits NSW by sourcing materials made in this State.

The Shadow Minister for the Hunter, Clayton Barr, said using manufacturing businesses in Newcastle to help build projects like road, hospitals and schools would boost jobs across the region.

“The Premier has a history of offshoring jobs but it makes sense to support manufacturing in the Hunter. We have incredible building capacity here and workers are hungry for opportunities,” Mr Barr said.

“Construction of the Western Sydney Airport link is a golden opportunity to support industries and businesses not just in the city, but across regional and rural NSW.”

The Member for Newcastle, Tim Crakanthorp, added: “This Premier claimed to want to make NSW the manufacturing capital but she has an abysmal record of supporting Hunter manufacturing – this is her opportunity to walk her talk.

“Ferries from China, buses from Malaysia, trains from South Korea and Newcastle’s own light rail from Spain – it’s a kick in the guts to the people of the Hunter every time this Government chooses to award contracts to overseas manufacturers.

“If the Berejiklian Government is genuine about creating jobs and supporting economic recovery in NSW it should start by using Hunter businesses for public infrastructure projects. The economic prosperity generated in communities is immense.”