Transport, logistics and automotive are closely linked with broader agribusiness industries in the Region. Transport industries are characterised by locally owned and multinational transport companies that move inputs and outputs for agriculture, manufacturing, mining and construction companies, on both rail and road.
Broader transport activity is linked closely with the Region’s visitor economy and local population. Activity in horticulture, transport and the Region’s general dependency on private transport also creates commercial demand in servicing and supporting the motor vehicle and mechanical and equipment requirements across these industries.
Forecast growth is linked closely to growth in horticulture, and is anticipated to gain momentum in the latter half of the 2017 to 2020 period as benefits from growth in export demand, expansion of horticultural industries and planned infrastructure flow into the sector. Automotive industry employers are already reporting increased demand for additional vehicles and related automotive services in response to large developments and plantations in horticulture that are currently being rolled out across the Region.
Anticipated growth is reflected in broader industry and public investment to ensure sector capacity can service forecast demand, including various road upgrades, the $440M Murray Basin Rail Project, and Mildura Airport’s $25M Runway Extension Project.
Due to licences and accredited qualifications required for employment in transport and automotive, forecast workforce growth will correspond to an increase in demand for vocational training and apprenticeships. For instance, truck drivers in agriculture-related industries will require a Multi-combination (MC) licence for employment.
Skills and training
In automotive, qualified vehicle technicians and automotive electricians will complete an apprenticeship and accredited training in vehicle mechanical technology and automotive electrical technology respectively, usually at the Certificate III level. More generally, employers look for workers that have a good attitude, strong work ethic, capacity to meet the physical requirements of their role and are ‘mechanically minded’.
Other licences (e.g. forklift) are also valuable for some entry level roles (e.g. yard staff). Demand for pre-employment may increase as employers in transport look to bridge the period between leaving school and gaining an MC licence for young workers interested in transport. Managers and supervisors may pursue training at the Certificate IV level or higher to upskill in their role and address organisational needs.