Page 2010 - Week 06 - Thursday, 9 June 2022

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Madam Speaker, this is a very important week for a range of reasons that I think are quite obvious. It is a campaign run by Australian Made, and it is all about supporting locally. We know that is very important, because every dollar that you spend supporting a local business goes back into your local community. That, in turn, stimulates other home-grown businesses, it boosts our economy and it supports local jobs. You can also be assured, especially here in Australia, of the quality, the processes and the care taken. We have much higher standards in Australia than almost anywhere else in the world.

We also have extraordinary talent and range in Australia, especially here in Canberra. When we support Australian Made, we are encouraging industries to grow. Growing industries gives us even more high-quality industries, choice and goods. With that in mind, my colleagues Ms Castley, Mr Davis and I took on a different role a few weeks ago which was published in the Canberra Times on Sunday. For a few hours we ditched our politician hats and became models, or something akin to that. It is certainly clear to me that I do not have a career in that space, but it was wonderful to be able to work with Handmade Canberra, the owner of Handmade markets, Julie, as well as local designers.

The local designer that I was able to work closely with was Karen Lee. Her website says that she is interested in the narrative formed by the activity of sculpting a collection through the manipulation of fabric, by draping, layering and pinning. She is conscious of creating fashion with integrity. I can certainly attest to this, and this also goes to the values that I was speaking about before—the idea of why Australian Made is so important and why this week is so important. Karen’s materials and the quality of the design were outstanding—incredibly comfortable to wear, and I think looked pretty good as well.

It is worth noting, as we welcome in a federal Labor government, that Prime Minister Albanese has made it very clear that manufacturing needs to come back to Australia. That is something we very much support. We do have, surprisingly to some in the ACT, a strong manufacturing industry, particularly in the realm of space and in advanced technologies. A recent Australian Made survey noted that 89 per cent of Australians believe that more manufacturing needs to be done here. We look forward to seeing what a new federal Labor government will do in this space to support Australian Made.

As minister for business and, for a very short time, a model, it is an absolute pleasure to help spread the word about why it is so important to support Australian Made. My thanks go to Julie, and to Megan and Keegan at the Canberra Times, for doing all that they did to ensure that there was such great attention given to this important week.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

The Assembly adjourned at 5.55 pm until Tuesday, 2 August 2022 at 10 am.

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