10:20am – NSW Department of Industry Programs

Rhonda Lawrie

Focus areas for the Department include Business Grants, facilitating Investment Projects, Technology Innovation, assisting with research, and Collaborative Solutions.

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NSW Department of Industry

The Department of Industry, Skills and Regional Infrastructure Development was established on July 1st 2015. The purpose of this government body is to stimulate commerce and create a rich environment for commercial enterprises to exist. This in turn will create more jobs, a better skilled workforce, outside investment and improve overall living standards for NSW citizens. The department is also highly focussed on building “resilient” frameworks into NSW business structures. The current secretary for the department is Simon Smith who is responsible to the Parliament of NSW. The department has four main areas of involvement which are: Trade, business and investment – Primary industries food & water – Mineral resources & energy – Education & training.

The NSW Department of Industry has areas of responsibility for the formation of skills to satisfy industry demands. Maintaining the sustainable usage of the state’s natural resources and supporting continued economic growth in the region of NSW. The department has a very close relationship with local industry and is in place to ensure that NSW business has the resources it needs to succeed both locally and internationally. A primary function of the department is to make sure the regions businesses have the skilled workforces they require, this is carried out through training programs like Training Services NSW which incorporated traineeships and apprenticeships across the state.

The department has a major role in food production by having influence a Department of Primary Industries (DPI) for Agriculture, Fisheries, Biosecurity and Food Safety and Water. Much of the work carried out within these industries concerns building resilience and protecting industries from environmental risks. These risks could be disease or food safety, but could also be managing the resources so as not to damage the environmental balance for future production. The DPI is also at the forefront of scientific research into agricultural productivity across all sectors and provides education and training at Tocal College. Another critical role played by the DPI Water is supervising the access and supply of water to NSW, an issue that is becoming more and more relevant with emerging environmental threats to supply due to rising population in the major cities.

The DPI Performance & Engagement works to foster effective two-way communication channels with industries, making sure policies are in line with commercial requirements. This department also manages risks and identifies opportunities to leverage strong and meaningful engagement. The DPI Strategy & Policy help formulate its core strategic framework and manages the DPI’s Cabinet and Legislative Programs.

DPI influence also extends to the regulation of Liquor & Gaming making sure the industry is carried out to the required standards. Supporting this sector is the DPIs Office of Racing that develops policy for and helps maintain the economic viability of racing in NSW. In support of its environmental control the DPI has a Lands & Forestry branch that develops policy, strategy and programs for the Crown land estate.