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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 01 Hansard (Thursday, 15 December 2016) . . Page.. 312 ..


more than just developing new digital technology; it is also in manufacturing and areas such as science, engineering and maths.

I firmly believe that the marketplace should determine the success of ideas and that the government should not compete against the private sector in an industry that can be self-sustaining. There is significant scope to broaden what is currently available and to recognise those opportunities.

I am proud to be a member of a party that is farsighted and innovative. There is a very high chance that the employment sector will shortly go through significant changes that will bring along new employment opportunities that do not currently exist. These new jobs will be available within the next decade as technology and innovations grow. We want to show that Australia, and Canberra in particular, is a safe environment for investment and we want jobs to cater for all skill levels.

A recent Anglicare report indicates that a significant proportion of people who genuinely want to work are unable to find suitable employment. The competition is fierce, and many find it impossible to get a foot in the door without assistance. The report goes on to suggest competition for low-skilled, entry-level jobs is increasing, at the same time as jobs at this level are decreasing. 138,000 Australians are competing for nearly 22,000 entry-level jobs nationally. That is only one job advertised for every six low-skilled jobseekers.

Finding a job without experience or training is tough. More than 37 per cent of Australian jobs now require a bachelor degree or higher qualification. In Canberra the figures are even more confronting: 50 per cent of jobs in the ACT require a degree of sorts and only 11 per cent are suitable for those with little or no qualification. I do not want our city to be known for turning away those who value hard work or the place where it is almost impossible to find a job without first obtaining a degree. I would like to see greater investment in the jobs market to promote growth which in turn will help disadvantaged jobseekers develop the skills and experiences.

Long-term investment and local solutions are needed. Particular emphasis should be placed on servicing international and national tourism, welcoming more international events and the utilisation of an international freight and transport hub for regional produce. Canberra should be a place of excitement, opportunity and innovation. It can be a leader in adapting to changing business environments and circumstances. Canberra needs a broader appeal to attract business and visitation. It is approaching a size where it can attract high-end retail outlets and increased patronage of better sporting facilities to host international events.

The ACT government cannot simply legislate Canberra into a more successful city; there is no silver bullet that can be signed into law that will make our city more vibrant and prosperous, because it is not the government of the ACT, it is the people of the ACT that make our city great, and drive Canberra to be a world-class city to visit and live in. It is their initiative that sees new cafes and restaurants opening up that rival any in Melbourne or Sydney. It is their entrepreneurship that sees new businesses start up and grow, bringing success and new jobs to our local community.


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