Trends in Australian Manufacturing

Commission research paper

Trends in Australian Manufacturing was released on 28 August 2003. The paper examines key developments and trends in manufacturing in Australia, with the emphasis being on developments over the last two decades. The report emphasises the following dimensions of change in Australian manufacturing:

  • the nature and determinants of relative and absolute growth in manufacturing - at the aggregate level, for its constituent parts and by region;
  • the impacts of globalisation and trade liberalisation on patterns of trade, domestic manufacturing activity and the Australian manufacturing labour market; and
  • the extent of productivity change in manufacturing and its sources and implications.

In examining these issues, the report analyses trends in the economic performance of manufacturing - its output, employment, capital, wages, productivity, input-output linkages and foreign trade flows - and assesses the links between these measures. Also see:


Cover, Copyright, Foreword, Acknowledgments, Contents, Abbreviations, Overview

1   Introduction
1.1   Views on the role of manufacturing
1.2   Objectives of this study
1.3   What is meant by manufacturing?
1.4   Structure of the report

2   A snapshot of the contribution of manufacturing
2.1   Sectoral comparisons
2.2   Indirect contributions of manufacturing

3   The changing role of Australian manufacturing
3.1   Output growth in manufacturing and other sectors
3.2   What has happened to employment and capital in manufacturing and other sectors?
3.3   The reasons for the relative decline of manufacturing
3.4   The implications of ‘deindustrialisation’

4   Changing trends within manufacturing
4.1   The composition of manufacturing
4.2   ‘Volatility’ in Australian manufacturing
4.3   Structural change
4.4   Specialisation
4.5   Links between industries
4.6   Patterns in the regional distribution of manufacturing

5   The manufacturing labour market
5.1   Skill andeducation
5.2   Earnings and work intensity
5.3   Stability of employment
5.4   Casual jobs and other non-traditional employment in manufacturing
5.5   Industrial disputes
5.6   Unionisation
5.7   Industrial accidents
5.8   The role of small business in manufacturing

6   Openness and competitiveness of the Australian manufacturing sector
6.1   The increasing openness of the Australian manufacturing sector
6.2   Cross border ownership — evidence of an increasingly open manufacturing sector
6.3   Destination and sources of trade flows
6.4   Barriers to trade

7   Productivity
7.1   Aggregate manufacturing productivity over time
7.2   Productivity within manufacturing
7.3   Comparisons with other industries and countries
7.4   Explanations for the productivity experiences of manufacturing

A   Industry classifications

B   Output measures for manufacturing

C   Trends in State and Territory manufacturing

D   Changed inventory management

E   Assessing vulnerability to structural change

F   Sensitivity to GDP shocks

G   Determining productivity peaks

H   Budgetary assistance to industry
H.1   Commonwealth budgetary assistance
H.2   Other assistance

I   Modelling productivity
I.1   Modelling industry-specific labour productivity differences
I.2   A time-series model of productivity in Australian manufacturing
I.3   Data errors and measurement issues
I.4   Productivity data

J   Industry structure in OECD countries

K   Sectoral contributions to Australian economic activity

L   Input-output links for manufacturing industries

M   Trade effects on manufacturing employment

N   The Salter mechanism

O   Trends in employment and activity
O.1   Trends in employment and activity
O.2   Links between industry classes


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