Hotspots for food processing jobs in regional report

Monday, 08 July, 2019

Hotspots for food processing jobs in regional report

In its recent Regional Growth Prospects Report, the Regional Australia Institute (RAI)unveiled the ‘hotspots’ for the food processing, tourism, advanced manufacturing and creative industries. Intended to help drive the economic future of regional Australia, the report pinpoints regions across the country where jobs in the above industries matter for local employment, and where policymakers and regional leaders should focus investment.

The report has identified Plantagenet (WA), Indigo (Vic), Woodanilling (WA) and Barossa (SA) as the most specialised areas for food processing employment in regional Australia. However, there are also 154 other regional LGAs where jobs in this industry are important.

An analysis of jobs numbers reveals where these ‘specialised’ regions are located and which are performing beyond national and industry trends. The report defines specialised regions as places where there is a high proportion of local jobs in the industry, compared to the national average for a place of that size.

RAI co-CEO Liz Ritchie said, “OECD experience shows that business-led specialisation approaches are effective in supporting regions to maintain their competitiveness in national and global contexts.”

The report indicates that although a region may be specialised, local factors can significantly drive or constrain potential for growth. Enabling policymakers and regional stakeholders to prioritise investment opportunities, the new research report will help strategically energise local economies. Regional leaders are also encouraged to refer to the report to track how their region is progressing and prompt conversations about future plans.

RAI co-CEO Dr Kim Houghton said, “We are recommending that policymakers tailor their approach in local regions — by supporting those that are performing above trends and removing barriers for those that aren’t.”

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