Peter Gutwein

Premier of Tasmania

16 June 2021

Peter Gutwein, Premier

Michael Ferguson, Minister for State Development, Construction and Housing and, Sarah Courtney, Minister for Skills, Training and Workforce Growth

New agreement to lock in Tassie’s first High Vis Army

The Tasmanian Liberal Government will today reach an important milestone in its partnership with industry to unleash a High Vis Army to help Tasmania build the infrastructure our State needs to secure our future.

The new Building the Workforce to Build Tasmania Memorandum of Understanding will be signed at the inaugural meeting of the Skills and Infrastructure Roundtable in Hobart this afternoon marking the first step in establishing agreements with industry aimed at increasing the numbers of workers in our building and construction sectors.

The new agreement between the Tasmanian Liberal Government and the Civil Contractors Federation, the Housing Industry Association, Keystone Tasmania and Master Builders Tasmania is locking in our push for a High Vis Army of workers to meet the needs of the construction sector, and is an important commitment outlined in our first 100 Day Plan.

The Premier, Peter Gutwein, said the need to plan for the future is more important than ever.

“The latest ABS figures show that Tasmania's economy continues to recover from the impacts of COVID-19, with our economic growth underpinned by increasing private investment and record building approvals.

“Our State’s recovery needs to be sensibly managed, which is why we are partnering with key stakeholders to deliver a sustainable private sector-led economic recovery for the sector over the next decade.

“By working together, this new agreement will promote the rewarding career opportunities available in the sector as well as excellence in building so we can locally grow the best building and construction workforce in the nation,” Premier Gutwein said.

Minister for State Development, Construction and Housing, Michael Ferguson, said with our 10 year infrastructure pipeline driving growth in the sector, we estimate that we will need another 6,500 skilled workers across the building and construction disciplines between now and 2025.

“With our major investment in infrastructure including roads, schools and social housing as well as investment in ports and renewable energy and hydrogen initiatives all demanding more workers, we are working with the industry to take direct action to get more boots on the ground, more high vis on backs and more hard hats on heads.

“This is a once in a generation opportunity for the private and public sector investment into infrastructure to provide long term certainty for the construction sector and the State’s economy,” Minister Ferguson said.

Minister for Skills, Training and Workforce Growth, Sarah Courtney said the MOU would also focus on coordinated efforts in workforce development and training activity to get the best results from both government and industry investment.

“This shared vision and closer collaboration will also work to attract more young Tasmanians looking for the right career pathway to this sector and will also focus on bringing more women into these traditionally male roles,” Minister Courtney said.

Our High Vis Army initiative will support a 25 per cent boost in the construction industry workforce locally, a sector which is already our fifth highest employer industry and already accounts for around 24 per cent of apprentices and trainees in training.

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