South Australian Political Priorities – Industries and Job Creation

South Australia’s vigorous program of industrialization depended on the high level of effective tariff protection it enjoyed. This protected the local motor vehicle, household appliance, shipping and electrical industries.

Growing SA small businesses with a permanent reduction in company tax.

Record funding for the state’s health system including hospitals, cheaper medicines (with a $10 cut to PBS-listed medications), Medicare, aged care and boosting regional mental health services.

1. Primary Industries

Primary industries are the lifeblood of South Australia’s economy with rich agricultural regions like Yorke Peninsula, world-renowned wine regions in Barossa and Clare, the South East forestry sector and thriving fishing and aquaculture centres. The Morrison Government is committed to growing these important sectors and supporting jobs in them.

This includes providing more support in training and apprenticeships with around 21,000 SA students enrolled in JobTrainer, over 13,000 supported under the Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements wage subsidy and the one-off Escaping Violence Payments to help them get back into work. It includes extending the Instant Asset Write-Off for another year until 30 June 2023, allowing more than 257,000 small businesses to offset the cost of new assets and invest in growth. It also includes doubling the asset test exemption to two years when pensioners downsize their home, making it easier for them to move into new housing.

The Government is also backing SA’s agriculture industry to grow its export revenues by boosting trade opportunities through new Free Trade Agreements with the UK, India, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and Hong Kong and establishing a Green Triangle Forest Industries Hub (headquartered in Mount Gambier). It is investing more than $13.7 billion since 2013 in a pipeline of road and rail projects including the North-South Corridor, Port Wakefield Overpass, Sturt Highway improvements and the Coffin Bay – Magill Road intersection.

The Morrison Government is focused on strengthening the State’s economy by delivering lower taxes, more jobs and better services for all SA families. This includes lowering the state’s tax rate to help create more jobs for SA workers, providing a lower tax guarantee for small businesses and protecting low income earners with a reduction in payroll tax.

2. Mining

Mining is a vital industry for the South Australian economy and is responsible for many jobs across all sectors. However, it is not without its drawbacks, including the pollution of water and soil, loss of biodiversity, damage to the local climate, and human rights abuses (see environmental problems page). The mining industry must abide by strict regulations to minimize these effects and ensure the safety and health of its employees. Some international financing organizations such as the IFC and Equator Principles require companies to follow these practices as a condition of receiving funding.

Several techniques are used to locate mineral deposits, the process known as prospecting. Once a deposit is found, mining can begin. There are two major types of mining: surface and underground. Surface mining involves excavating a mineral seam from the ground’s surface, which requires clearing the land of trees and brush, and moving layers of earth to expose the valuable production seam. Underground mining, on the other hand, involves extracting a mineral seam from depths up to 3 km below the ground’s surface. This is achieved by drilling holes and then digging tunnels to access the reserve.

A career in mining can be hazardous, as evidenced by the many deaths and injuries suffered by miners over the years. The most common injury is black lung disease, which occurs when miners breathe in coal dust. Other forms of mining can also cause breathing problems, such as silica dust, which can result in silicosis.

The Malinauskas Government’s 2023-24 budget is focused on providing a range of social and economic benefits to the people of South Australia. These include increasing housing supply, supporting low cost living and ensuring that the state’s health system is sustainable. It also provides for increased funding to a number of key regional projects, including mobile blackspot upgrades and broadband upgrades.

3. Energy

Our energy sector continues to thrive under the Coalition government with major projects like the South Australian Integrated Energy Centre at Port Bonython and our Clean Hydrogen Development and Demonstration project in Moomba. In addition, our $85 million support for Santos Limited’s Lower Cost Carbon Capture Development and Demonstration Project is creating new jobs in regional SA. And our Modern Manufacturing Initiative is supporting new green cement production jobs in Whyalla, Port Augusta and Moomba. These are the jobs of tomorrow and they are supported by over $218 million in Coalition funding since 2013 to help make our steel, iron ore, alumina and hydrogen industries even stronger.

We are also continuing to grow SA’s small businesses with tax relief for over 257,000 companies and helping them improve their energy efficiency and reduce power bills. And we are improving access to Medicare-subsidised telehealth and investing in new hospital services including an MRI licence for Victor Harbor. We are delivering major improvements in aged care with a $19.1 billion package in response to the Royal Commission, and expanding home care packages for 43,000 NDIS participants across Australia including more than 160,000 in SA. And we are keeping SA safe by maintaining strong borders and disrupting people-smuggling operations.

We are also protecting our unique environment with projects including almost $600,000 for the Secret Rocks threatened species safe haven on Eyre Peninsula and $700,000 to protect a new kowari habitat on Kangaroo Island. We are tackling waste and pollution with the roll-out of our waste export bans and the introduction of ReMade in Australia to give consumers confidence that products have been remade here from recycled materials. And we are boosting coastal communities with $1.3 million to expand Glenelg Reef and $2 million to establish a new shellfish reef in Kingston Park/Marino.

4. Education

A high level of education, employment and training increases the chances of an individual having higher incomes and job security, positioning them for greater social and economic advantage. To help young South Australians achieve this, the State Government is investing significantly to improve public education infrastructure, including a record $1.3 billion investment to build new schools and fast-tracking urgent capital works. It is also boosting regional SA industry with a $218 million investment in five energy and low emissions technology projects in the Eyre Peninsula, Upper Spencer Gulf and Moomba. Creating more jobs and growth for small businesses with tax relief to support business investment, reducing the company tax rate from 30 per cent to 25 per cent. More than 257,000 small businesses are already benefiting from the Coalition’s policy.

Making it easier to buy a home by allowing Australians to use up to 40 per cent of their superannuation to get into the property market, and removing barriers that prevent older Australians from downsizing to residences better suited to their lifestyle and freeing up larger homes for younger families. Growing the State’s science and technology industries with a $50 million Trailblazer University for the University of Adelaide to commercialise defence technologies, and making it the Space State by continuing our commitment to establish the Australian Space Agency and Space Discovery Centre in Adelaide.

Providing more opportunities for SA farmers to export through our new free trade agreements with the UK and India, and reducing the cost and time of exporting our food and fibre industries with a world-class trade system. Maintaining the safety of our communities and our borders with a return to strong funding for Defence, border policies that disrupt people smuggling and prevent illegal maritime arrivals, and online safety reforms.

5. Tourism

Tourism is the temporary, short – term movement of people to destinations outside their home countries for the purpose of leisure travel and recreation. It contributes to a country’s GDP and provides employment. Tourism is a very important sector in many developing countries, as it provides them with an alternative source of foreign exchange earnings, which can be used to pay for imported goods and services. Additionally, unlike traditional exports, which often face price fluctuations and require long – term investment to realise their full potential, the prices of tourist products are generally repaid in foreign currency within a relatively short period.

The Coalition Government’s strong economic management is building a stronger SA, guaranteeing essential services and keeping SA families safe. Our lower taxes have helped more than 257,000 small businesses, we’ve put money into transport projects like the North South Corridor and Flinders Rail Link in Adelaide, the Port Wakefield Overpass, duplication of the Joy Baluch AM Bridge in Port Augusta and roadworks for the Thomas Foods facility at Murray Bridge as part of our rural roads package, and we’re making SA the Space State by funding the new Australian Space Agency headquarters, the Space Discovery Centre and Mission Control at Lot Fourteen in Adelaide.

We’re also investing in jobs and growth by delivering more than $10 million to keep South Australia’s farmers in business through our disaster relief fund, establishing a new waste-export ban and recycling scheme to protect our oceans and marine life and launching a ‘ReMade in Australia’ campaign so consumers know where their products are really coming from. We’re strengthening the security of our defence industries with record funding, bolstering border protection through people smuggling policies and tackling domestic violence by funding local crime prevention and early intervention activities.