Putting Australian Medical Manufacturers at the Front of the Queue

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Media Release

Sunday, 30th January 2022

Putting Australian Medical Manufacturers at the Front of the Queue

with Richard Marles MP, Mark Butler MP & Ed Husic MP

Critical medical supplies should be made in Australia – and the Australian Government should be buying Australian-made medical supplies.
 
A Labor Government will increase Australia’s sovereign manufacturing capacity in medical essentials, like testing equipment, masks, PPE and ventilators.
 
We will achieve this in two ways:

  • We will give first priority to Australian made medical technology for Government purchases in consumables and equipment.
  • We will instruct the $15 billion National Reconstruction Fund to make medical technology a top priority and work with the Future Made in Australia Office to develop a national investment plan for health care essentials, which will identify what needs to be made in Australia and how to make that happen.

The fact that we are three years into the pandemic and still face shortages on critical needs like Rapid Antigen Tests is an indictment of a government that has failed Australians. 
 
At every stage of this pandemic, experts warned Mr Morrison of what was on the horizon, and every time he failed to listen and failed to act.
 
Mr Morrison makes the same mistakes over and over, but he is too arrogant to learn from them – and it’s Australians who wear the consequences.
 
His insistence on letting the market decide means Australians are forced to count on overseas producers and unreliable supply chains for basic medical equipment – and are still facing shortages as a result.
 
We need to re-build our medical and pharmaceutical manufacturing capacity in this country - but the government that drove out car manufacturing will never be a government that delivers on domestic medical supply manufacturing.
 
Labor’s approach will give homegrown industry the certainty to invest and grow, meaning more jobs, more exports, better health and greater self-reliance.
 
Australia has innovative businesses and some of the world's best scientists. When government backs them and gives our workforce a chance to shine, we know they’ll deliver. 
 
If we don’t invest in making things here, we will always rely on others in a crisis. 
 
While this is about shoring up our long-term self-reliance, we also call on the Morrison-Joyce Government to act now to help Australian companies access the resources they need to gain approvals for Australian made tests.
 
It just doesn’t make sense that our manufacturers are exporting tests that have been approved in the United States, while we struggle to secure imports for ourselves.

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Electorate Office

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Marrickville NSW 2204

Phone: 02 9564 3588

Parliament House Office

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Phone: 02 6277 7700

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