OFFS Don, if you think its a forced majure with China then why bother having a defense force at all? It will be economically impossible for a country of 25m to fend off a country of 1.5B if they so choose to want to blockade you. I was in China two weeks ago, things are not what they appear from the outside.I don't think our defense force is every going to keep the Chinese at bay and nor do they intend to try. More aimed at our Northern closer neighbors me thinks.Wrong again - the specific purpose of those submarines is supposedly to keep our sea-lanes open during crisis or war so that we don't get completely cut off again as we did in WWII. Who (in our region) has the capacity to cut off our sea-lanes? Think about it.Wait until China hits the export market!China and Thailand have very high barriers to importing foreign vehicles; whereas we dropped our barriers almost completely. Did it ever occur to you that unfair trade practice is the core reason behind the demise of the car industry? Our industry was not operating on a level playing field - if it was we would have maintained reciprocal barriers against Thailand (for a start) but Howard refused to do that after he signed the Thai-Australia free trade deal; they refused to allow Ford to export cars to Thailand under the same arrangement that Ford imported cars into Australia from Thailand so that was the death knell for manufacturing in Australia. The government would not go in to bat for it.
We simply can't compete against a nation with no unions, superannuation, workers compensation and OH&S while they pay their workers $4 an hour, not with our average metro house prices being as high as they are.
The purpose of the ADF is to defend against local aggression, in the event of the major conflict with China Australia will require the assistance of the USA and other allies to protect it self and will contribute its own resources to that defense.
Actually China doesn't have high trade barriers on cars and they announced recently to drop to 15% this year and as low as 8% on some imported parts. Chinese govt is readying its domestic makers for large scale export and they are doing this by progressively making them more competitive through less protection and as they improve their quality and safety.
Totally agree with you that there is and was unfair trade barriers and if you look back into your memory cells I have previously stated Australia needs to wise up and match like for like. Free trade is free provided its free in both directions.
Total cost of employment in developing countries is frequently under reported in Australian Media and as someone who has worked in both India and UAE I can assure you things are rarely what they seem. Australian employers have little accountability for employee welfare outside their salary, bonus and Super. Developing countries also have to deal with lower productivity and fatter Supervisory workforce as Managers are less multi skilled and usual one man one job BS. On coal face again its one man one job. So it takes four people to change a light bulb etc and its neigh impossible to have workers work alone without supervision if you want something done. Indian productivity is rated as low as 10% vs Canadian in some construction projects I have been close with, but usually around 30%. That means they need 10 x the workforce to as low as 3 x the workforce.
As I audit potential suppliers in other countries, here's some info for you
- employees pay 12.5% and employers pay 12.5% to their super funds
- Medical is covered by company
- Accommodation, all food, transport is covered by company, senior staff they will make the pay something
- One copper smelter, pays all education, food, accommodation, health including 2 x year check up for all workers including their extended families in the local village that supplies the labour
- It is common for employers to fund their daughters weddings or part of of male employees
- While OHS is improving, the hardest part is making them use it. If they don't want they can rarely be forced or they go on strike.
- Sacking someone, god they'd just about have to kill the CEO for that to happen!
- Annual leave when added all up is often equal to or more than Australia
- Factory safety standards are improving, but not as bad as many think overall.
- Productivity is very low
China, was there last month
- safety standards in many factories we went too would be equal too or often better than Australia, especially public infrastructure projects. New factories have higher standards than old, but they are all exposed to a monthly govt audit for safety and env. Fail, you close then and there.
- If they have migrant workers, accommodation is provided
- Food is provided as standard
- If business goes down, its not politically correct to just sack your workforce.
- The have company funded medical and pension schemes
- Productivity is still an challenge for them
- We pay $2000 starting to $4000/mth more experienced for operator salaries
- All accommodation, transport, all food, sporting facilities, medical
- Annual airfare home and 5 weeks leave
- Education allowance, airfare for wife can kick in for higher non-supervisory grades.
- 1 weeks bereavement leave for immediate family members
- Bonus is usually 1-3mths pay, depending on performance.
- Try to fire someone, hahaha!
- We are moving towards western productivity levels, but hampered by legacy management practices, mindsets, bottom of barrel contractor employment. A recent project in mid west USA we are looking at we found the smelter there would have lower manning costs than our own using so called lower cost Southern Asian labour. As such the flavor of the year is now automation.
Oh, we started to accept material, 0.5t steel bars with machining and copper inserted inside them from Luxuemberg as they are now competitive against our usual Indian Supply chain! An similar machine shop in Belgium was rejected due to poor standards, safety and equipment.