MINISTERS STATEMENTS: Steel Industry

Mr CARROLL (Minister for Industry and Employment) (12:21:19) — I rise to update the house on how the Andrews government’s record investment in infrastructure is delivering for our local steel industry and delivering local jobs for local Victorians.

Last week I had the great pleasure to join the member for Frankston at BlueScope’s manufacturing site in Western Port to meet some of the 100 workers that have been put on over the past 12 months, helped by the Andrews Labor government’s record investment in infrastructure. Six years ago the steel industry was struggling, just as the state Liberal government was.

We have mandated the use of local steel. There have been 26 level crossings removed with up to 100 per cent local steel used in the process. Congratulations to the member for Frankston on the opening of the Skye Road level crossing last month. On the West Gate tunnel there will be 92 per cent local steel used; for the Metro tunnel there will be 93 per cent. Our steel industry is booming. When we met with BlueScope during the global financial crisis their shares were under $1. They are now over $18, and they pay a lot of credit to the Andrews Labor government’s record investment.

Honourable members interjecting.

Mr CARROLL — Speaker, they are shouting. There is only one steel job they have got, and it is always for the man of steel in New South Wales to come down. The member for Malvern cannot even get Peter Costello up to give a pep talk to them.

Honourable members interjecting.

The SPEAKER — Order! The member for Hawthorn!

Mr CARROLL — It is always importing John Howard. We have 88 strategic projects underway over their eight — 88 versus eight.

Honourable members interjecting.

The SPEAKER — Order! The member for Hawthorn!

Mr CARROLL — An AFL coach can get sacked, but not the Leader of the Opposition. They think local content is something to be aspirational about. We are delivering on local jobs, delivering for our local steel manufacturers and making sure Victoria has the transformational projects going forward, but we are also making sure that we give local apprentices every opportunity to work on our major projects. We are very proud of our local steel industry. It is companies like BlueScope that are delivering and exporting, and we are very proud to be a partner with them along the way.