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$900m Cut Undermines Auto Workers and Business Confidence

The Australian Government has undermined the job security of tens of thousands of automotive manufacturing and supply chain workers with its plan to cut $900 million from the Automotive Transformation Scheme, at a time when Australia’s three domestic automotive manufacturers and their supply chain are working to transition their operations.

The Government announced, in the Budget, a $500 million cut to the ATS in 2015–17 and the total abolition of the ATS program from the end of 2017. This results in total cut of $900 million.

“After only eight months in office, the Government has vowed to cut $900 million of the $1.3 billion in funding that remains in the ATS from 2015. If this cut passes Parliament, it will intensify the financial pressure on the supply chain, which has already factored ATS funding into their long-term business and investment decision-making process,” FCAI Chief Executive Tony Weber said.

“This 70 per cent cut sends a very poor message to the global business community.  It tells global firms that Australia will not provide the policy certainty they need to confidently invest in Australia.”

Mr Weber said he was deeply concerned for the 45,000 workers directly employed, and the more than 100,000 workers indirectly employed in the automotive sector, around Australia.

“The FCAI has repeatedly advised the Government of the serious consequences significant cuts to the ATS could have on the automotive industry in Australia, at what is already a difficult time for manufacturing and supply chain workers,” Mr Weber said.

“I call on the Parliament of Australia to seriously consider the consequences a cut to the ATS will have on automotive workers and I encourage them to oppose this measure.” 

For more information, contact:
Sheena Ireland, Communications Manager
02 6229 8221 / 0458 038 555
Sheena.ireland@fcai.com.au