Jobs and skills in focus at infrastructure, transport and regional roundtables

Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Catherine King is today meeting with industry, unions, local government and peak body groups and other stakeholders for a roundtable on jobs and skills in the nation’s regions.

This is the first of four roundtables the Minister is hosting, with meetings later in the month occurring with the infrastructure, aviation and surface transport sectors.

Skills shortages, how workforces can support and adapt to the net-zero transition, taking advantage of regional and technological opportunities, and attracting diverse and talented workers are just some of the topics to be explored across the four roundtables.

The discussions will bring together representatives that directly support, live, learn, work and hire within each of these sectors, including governments, peak body and industry groups, airlines and airports, transport operators and training institutes.

The virtual regional roundtable today will explore matters such as solutions to encourage skilled workers to move to and stay in the regions, as well as improving liveability, housing affordability and services like healthcare to support regional workforces.

The next roundtable will bring together infrastructure sector stakeholders on Friday 19 August in Sydney

That will be followed by a roundtable on Aviation on 23 August in Canberra and a final roundtable on surface transport in Sydney on 25 August.

Discussions from these roundtables will inform discussions at the Albanese Government’s Jobs and Skills Summit, to be held at Parliament House in Canberra on 1–2 September.

The broader Jobs and Skills Summit will bring Australians together to address our shared economic challenges and recommend immediate actions as well as opportunities to drive positive change in the longer term.

The summit will inform the Employment White Paper, which will help shape the future of Australia’s labour market. It will be led by the Treasury, which will invite submissions from and engage the wider community over the next 12 months.

Quotes attributable to Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King:

“Our goal is to build robust, better-trained and more productive workforces – from those underpinning our transport sectors like aviation, to those in our furthermost regions.

“As a member for a regional electorate, I am pleased to begin the roundtable meetings talking to people about the needs of regional Australia.

“We also want to create even more opportunities for Australians to get ahead and reach their aspirations, while bolstering incomes and living standards.

“I’m committed to ensuring voices from right across these sectors are heard and represented to ensure we achieve these outcomes. The roundtables will ensure a wide range of views is reflected at the Jobs and Skills summit in September.

“I know the challenges and opportunities each of our sectors and regions face is unique – there isn’t a one-size-fits all for a nation as proudly diverse as ours.

“I look forward to listening to a range of the people that learn, live, work and hire within each of these sectors and across our regions, as this will be critical to ensuring positive changes in our jobs, skills and workforce landscapes.”