BCEC launches Future-Proofing the WA Economy
Kelly Pohatu, Events and Communications Coordinator
The Centre’s latest publication – Future-Proofing the WA Economy – was launched at a breakfast event at The Westin Perth on Friday 30 August.
This fourth report in the BCEC’s Focus on Industry series shows that diversifying the State’s economy to develop emerging new sectors including defence, lithium, big data and tourism would create more than 163,000 new jobs in Western Australia within the next five years.
The report maps a pathway for the State’s decision-makers to ensure every West Australian benefits from the opportunities presented by new and developing industries.
Future leaders and economists were in attendance, including students from Fremantle College, Methodist Ladies’ College and Curtin Economics Society.
Robyn Collard performed a moving Welcome to Country and Professor Deborah Terry AO, Vice-Chancellor at Curtin University, opened the event.
In launching the report, co-author and BCEC Director, Professor Alan Duncan, said diversifying the State’s economy was critical to ensuring long-term growth and creating a more resilient economy, especially in regional WA.
“By identifying new sectors that harness the State’s natural strengths, a more diverse WA economy could add 163,000 new jobs in the next five years, with more than 48,000 spread across WA’s regions,” Alan said.
Report co-author and BCEC Research Fellow, Dr Steven Bond-Smith, said regional WA had been significantly impacted by the State’s volatile economy over the past decade, so it was important to identify suitable industries that would help these regions thrive.
Kitty Prodonovich, Chief Executive Officer, Regional Chambers of Commerce and Industry of WA; Ralph Addis, Director General, Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Professor Alan Duncan, Director, BCEC; Bonnie Lin, Managing Director, B2 RAINMAKERS and Dr Steven Bond-Smith, Research Fellow, BCEC.
Ralph Addis, Director General of the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development says the report is a timely contribution right when the State is identifying opportunities to diversify.
Kitty Prodonovich, Chief Executive Officer of the Regional Chambers of Commerce and Industry of WA said no one is more invested in a regional town than people who live there and own businesses.
“We need to invest in regions for locals, in collaboration with locals,” Kitty said.
Bonnie Lin, Managing Director at B2 RAINMAKERS shared international insights from China and Portland, Oregon into industry diversification and innovation to demonstrate how we might be able draw on similarities in Western Australia.
In closing the event, Bankwest Managing Director, Rowan Munchenberg said the report will provide an approach for government and policy to develop a diversified economy for WA.