House of Representatives 6/09/2022
Mr KHALIL (Wills) (13:56): Making things here—manufacturing in Australia—that is what the Albanese Labor government is about, unlike that mob opposite. Recently, I met with a local fabric manufacturer in the northern suburbs of Melbourne, HMA Fabrics, which has been operating since 1985. The managing director, Ismail Ali, took over the operation and the family business from his uncle and his father. They migrated from Lebanon in the early eighties to escape conflict. Like many migrants, they worked hard. They built up a business in Australia and established it. I talked to Ismail about the Albanese government’s $15 billion reconstruction fund, which will support manufacturing businesses and create secure and well-paid jobs.
Ismail faces a lot of these challenges in the apparel industry in Australia, including with the recent closure of the few remaining apparel dye houses in Australia at the end of 2021. This has caused delays and it’s caused shortages. As a result, a lot of clothing manufacturers, like those producing school wear, are going to overseas producers to secure stock. Local businesses like Ismail Ali’s do not want this. They want to support Australian business and jobs and buy Australian made. Rather than business leaving Australia, we’re all about making things here, and everyone in the Albanese Labor government, on this side, is going to bring manufacturing back home.