Former Industry Minister Greg Combet has been appointed as South Australia’s Automotive Transformation Coordinator.
The announcement comes in the light of Holden’s decision to shut down its manufacturing operations in Australia.
According to a media release, SA Premier Jay Weatherill said Mr Combet would be backed by the support of the Advanced Manufacturing Taskforce and he would have the responsibility of coordinating assistance provided to automotive industry workers and suppliers.
“Mr Combet has significant experience with the auto manufacturing industry as a former Minister and has a constructive relationship with the Federal Government,” Mr Weatherill said.
The South Australian Government has a series of programs in place to assist workers as the State works on transforming its manufacturing industry.
“The Manufacturing Strategy was initially planned to be a ten year strategy however, we will now accelerate that work to be undertaken within four years to coincide with Holden’s planned exit,” Mr Weatherill said.
“I have spoken to Economic Development Board chair Raymond Spencer about the EDB leading efforts to attract new industries to South Australia,” Mr Weatherill said.
“I’ll also be convening a meeting of SA’s auto component suppliers this Thursday to discuss the Government’s future plans.”
Victoria’s Manufacturing Minister David Hodgett will be attending Thursday’s discussions, while South Australian Manufacturing Minister Tom Kenyon will be representing the State at the corresponding meeting in Melbourne on Wednesday.
Victorian Premier Denis Napthine will chair the statewide automotive industry roundtable and said the Victorian Coalition will focus first on helping the workers and their families from both the automotive and components sectors who have been impacted by the Holden’s decision.