As 2022 comes to a close, it is timely to reflect on what has been a year of opportunity, challenges and progress.
To say ‘things have returned to normal’ in 2022, simply because we’ve not experienced the lockdown disruptions of 2020 and 2021, is to ignore the learnings and opportunities the past three years have uncovered.
There is no doubt we have all faced challenges. As individuals, as an industry, and indeed as a nation, and there will continue to be challenges into the future.
But I believe we will be better-equipped to navigate these challenges by drawing on what we have learnt from a truly unprecedented period in our history.
A key takeaway for all of us in the manufacturing industry has been the renewed recognition that a well-resourced and agile local supply chain is critical to enabling the industry to develop the capability to support the needs of the local market.
Not only does a strong local supply chain ensure the needs of the market are met, it also provides a platform to promote collaboration and drive innovation within the industry to meet the ever-changing needs of customers.
A prime example of this platform was the October launch of the ARC Research Hub for Australian Steel Manufacturing at the University of Wollongong.
The Hub connects nine leading Australian universities with 10 industry partners, including InfraBuild, to collaborate on higher-value added products and more advanced manufacturing processes.
Initiatives like this will only serve to benefit our industry in the future and we are proud to be working with some of the country’s brightest minds to achieve better outcomes for all of us.
In the context of the industry’s collective efforts to decarbonise, this focus on domestic research and development will provide immense value as we search for new ways to improve material efficiency and lower emissions.
From a market perspective, 2022 has certainly seen global steel markets temper from the highs of the pandemic.
But the infrastructure pipeline remains encouraging and the transition to renewable energy is opening up significant opportunities for businesses right across the country to capitalise on a growing segment of the market.
Finally, I would like to say thank you to you all for your business and support throughout 2022 and wish you all the best for a healthy and successful 2023.
Interim CEO of InfraBuild
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