News & Views

3rd June 2016

Ten steps towards a more competitive Australia

03 Jun 2016

The Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) has launched its Top 10 in 10 plan to improve Australia’s global competitiveness.

“Over the past decade Australia has fallen from 10th to an unacceptable 21st on the Global Competiveness Index. Our weakest areas include tax and workplace regulation. Falling competitiveness means less investment, fewer jobs and missed opportunities,” says ACCI’s CEO James Pearson.

“Australia’s global competitiveness must improve or we risk sacrificing the high living standards which we, our parents and our children have come to expect.” 

The CEO of the National Electrical and Communications Association (NECA), Suresh Manickam has welcomed the launch of ACCI’s plan and noted that a number of its key points will resonate with NECA members.

“Making it easier for small business to hire apprentices, more flexible workplace arrangements, cutting the company tax rate and bringing back the Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) are all important reforms for electrical contractors,” Mr Manickam said.

“NECA has been advocating these positions over the last few years and remains hopeful that the outcome at the Federal Election will enable reforms to be made in these areas.”

“We have argued for a Government subsidy to attract more adult apprentices, ensuring that skills and workplace experience can be harnessed across our sector.”

“We agree that greater workplace flexibility that allows employers and employees to negotiate arrangements.”  

“We have called for a plan to reduce the company tax rate to 25% as highlighted by the Henry Review.  We are keen to ensure that this promised reform is implemented and maintained.”

“And we’ve worked with a range of industry bodies to support the re-establishment of the ABCC.  NECA knows that the return of the ABCC will lead to a crackdown on illegal worksite activities and far greater transparency across the building and construction sector.”

“NECA acknowledges the work of ACCI that seeks to improve business conditions across Australia and we look forward to seeing aspects of the plan implemented by the incoming Government.” said Mr Manickam

ACCI’s Top 10 in 10 plan towards a more competitive Australia notes:

1          Give young people a chance to succeed by making it easier for employers to take on apprentices and trainees

2          Ensure government spending is sustainable by reducing it to less than 25% of GDP

3          Help industries grow through workplace regulation that better responds to their needs

4          Let entrepreneurs get on with growing their businesses by reducing government red tape each year

5          Create jobs by allowing employers and employees to negotiate workplace arrangements that best meet their needs

6          Boost incomes by cutting the company tax rate to 25% within ten years through annual reductions

7          Build the transport, communications and energy facilities we need by backing the independent plan of Infrastructure Australia

8          Lower building costs by bringing back the Australian Building and Construction Commission

9          Encourage innovation and value for money by facilitating greater competition in government-funded education, health and aged care services

10        Welcome more international visitors by making visas cheaper and easier to obtain



Media enquiries and interviews

Barry Jackson – National Marketing and Communications


D 02 9962 6904

M 0457 767 328


Notes for editors

  1. NECA is the peak industry body representing the interests of electrical and communications contractors Australia-wide.
  2. NECA is run by electrical contractors, for electrical contractors.
  3. We have 5,000 contracting companies as members – and they in turn employ over 50,000 people Australia-wide.
  4. NECA employs almost 350 people across its seven chapters (Queensland, New South Wales, ACT, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and Western Australia).
  5. The chapters provide NECA members with a range of services including: Industrial Relations, Health & Safety, Legal, Technical, Training, business-support services, product discounts and advocacy representation in Canberra with Government, Industry bodies and Training bodies.
  6. NECA wholly-owns its Legal firm, Group Training and the NECA Colleges (in WA) and EcoSmart Electricians – and has joint ventures with a superannuation company (NSW) and one of the national cabling registrars (ACRS).
  7. NECA also employ around 2,000 apprentice electricians and provides training to a further 2,000.
  8. For further information go to

Made possible by our sponsors:

Member Login

Enter your NECA Login ID.
Enter the password that accompanies your username.
[X] Close this Window