Business welcomes $1 million for ICN but wary of red tape

The business community has welcomed WA Labor’s commitment to invest $1 million in the Industry Capability Network (ICNWA), run by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Western Australia (CCI).

ICNWA has been operated by CCI for more than a decade and has helped more than 400 Western Australian companies win work across 1600 tenders and contracts since state funding stopped in 2013 – including high-profile private projects like Gorgon, Wheatstone and Browse FLNG and public works like the new museum, Perth Stadium and Sports Precinct and the Karratha Health Campus.

CCI Chief Executive Officer Deidre Willmott welcomed Opposition Leader Mark McGowan’s recognition of the importance of local contractors and WA Labor’s support of the CCI-ICNWA program, but cautioned against overregulation.

"ICNWA has enjoyed great success under CCI’s oversight and it is encouraging that WA Labor has committed to investing $1 million in the program to see this good work continue, should they win government,” Ms Willmott said.

“While CCI has long supported boosting local content and creating opportunities for young people, WA business does remain concerned that introducing more regulations regarding apprentices and trainees could prove counterproductive – industry needs to be able to be agile and respond to changing market conditions free of red tape, so CCI would encourage WA Labor to ensure any regulatory proposal undergoes rigorous scrutiny to ensure it helps business, rather than hinders.

“Mark McGowan needs to make sure his $1million spend goes to creating jobs on major projects, rather than jobs for bureaucrats to push paper around.

“CCI and the business community are committed to working with all political parties to ensure young Western Australians, local workers and WA companies are all provided full, fair and reasonable access to available opportunities.”

Media contact: Kate Hodges – 0448 928 227                          

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