China's cheap tricks
IPSWICH business is on the frontline of keeping Australian manufacturing alive.
Bundamba aluminium business Capral has been asked for input by the Federal Government into stopping the dumping of foreign goods at uncompetitive prices into the Australian market.
Capral CEO Phil Jobe met Federal Minister for Home Affairs Jason Clare to call for upcoming legislation to prevent cheaply made Chinese goods from threatening Ipswich jobs.
"Chinese manufacturers are currently exploiting and circumventing existing legislation," Mr Jobe said.
"The anti-dumping laws haven't been updated in over a decade, so it's good to see that under this government they are being brought up to date."
Mr Jobe praised the work of federal Member for Blair Shayne Neumann, who he said had lobbied on behalf of Ipswich businesses for legislative reform.
"There are 300 jobs on the line here at Capral," Mr Neumann said.
"It's not a question of free trade versus protectionism. It's about stopping unfair trade threatening Ipswich jobs."
Mr Neumann said existing anti-dumping laws were easily circumvented by Chinese companies who were setting up companies in Australia to avoid the laws.
"The Chinese heavily subsidise their own production and then sell it in Australia at cost.
"There is no way Australian companies can compete fairly against that."
Mr Clare said Capral's plight was indicative of manufacturing across the country.
"Australian manufacturers are under a lot of pressure. Some of that is due to the high Aussie dollar, and illegal dumping adds extra pressure to these businesses."
Mr Clare said Mr Jobe's concerns would be taken on board, and a number of them were already being addressed in upcoming anti-dumping legislation.