The future of advanced manufacturing in regional Australia

The Australian manufacturing sector employs around 860,000 people, generates more than $100 billion in economic value and over $50 billion in exports, and contributes around a quarter of total R&D investment – roughly four times its share of the economy. Critically regional manufacturers play an important part and contribute around one-third of these economic and employment outcomes.

Regional manufacturing is critical to a modern Australian economy and an important part of the Modern Manufacturing Strategy. To survive and prosper Australian manufacturing must confront and combat the very real prospect of ongoing disruption and future economic shocks.

The COVID-19 pandemic has raised serious questions about our ability to rapidly respond to a crisis and exposed significant weaknesses in our local manufacturing capability and an unhealthy dependence on global supply chains.

The renewed focus in Sovereign Manufacturing is a national priority and opportunity to revitalise regional manufacturing, address major skills shortages, build more resilient supply chains and position regional Australia in the new economy.


The RAM CRC will aim to develop new value-creation pathways for manufacturing as part of a strategy to build long-term value-adding partnerships between industry and research organisations. The RAM CRC will play a significant role in transforming sovereign manufacturing in regional communities by building scale and strengthening capabilities in agile, resilient and sustainable advanced manufacturing.

As we look to the future there will be a vibrant ecosystem of globally competitive and creative manufacturing precincts across regional Australia with efficient and resilient circular economies of materials, products, waste and energy.

These precincts will drive new opportunities and operate as autonomous communities, promote social, cultural and economic wellbeing, and act as a catalyst for regional areas being more attractive places to work and live.