The Australian Constructors Association is calling on the Federal Government to focus its migration system on driving productivity improvements over sheer labour force numbers in its submission released today.

Australian Constructors Association CEO Jon Davies said the message is clear, migration will not solve the construction industry’s workforce shortages but refocussing migration policy on driving productivity improvements will help position the industry for the future.

“Migration must be viewed as a lever for productivity growth rather than a channel for increasing the size of the labour force,” said Mr Davies.

“To pull the productivity lever the migration process needs to become more strategic in seeking out and attracting talent from the best labour markets in the world.

“Australia currently stands in line with many other countries competing for the world’s best skills and we do little to force our way to the head of that queue.”

Attracting the best and brightest will not be easy. Australia’s reputation has taken a battering in recent years, and it will take more than friendly faces and warm sunny weather to compete on an international scale.

“If Australia is going to be successful in attracting talent, it is important our processes are seamless and streamlined,” said Mr Davies.

“Currently there is far too many visas and much unnecessary administration in the system.

“Providing easier pathways to permanent residency to ensure Australia retains the skills and intellectual property are a must.

“Further, there is little justification to maintain skill-related visa requirements and we instead call for a simpler approach based upon minimum salaries.”

The Australian Constructors Association congratulates the Australian Government on following through with its commitments from the Jobs and Skills Summit held in September 2022. This review is one of many underway to improve that will contribute to ensure Australia better meets existing challenges and sets a clear direction for the years ahead.

Download the submission.