Australia’s chemicals and plastics industries directly employ 53,000 people and represent between 9 and 10 per cent of total Australian manufacturing activity. The chemicals and plastics industry provides essential materials to many other sectors, including automotive, healthcare and pharmaceuticals, education and information technology, packaging, construction and consumer appliances.
Standing Committee on Chemicals
In response to the 2008 Productivity Commission's Research Report Chemicals and Plastics Regulation, the Council of Australian Governments (COAG), at its meeting on 29 November 2008, agreed to a number of reforms including the establishment of a new governance framework to oversee chemicals and plastics reform.
The Standing Committee on Chemicals (the Committee) is part of the new governance framework and was established under a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by COAG on 7 December 2009. The objective of the Committee is to achieve an effective and efficient national system of chemicals and plastics regulation.
Chemicals and Plastics Industry Development
A competitive Australian chemicals and plastics manufacturing industry plays an important role in the success of the Australian economy. The sectors’ products support other vital industries like food, automotive, building and construction, packaging, medical, agriculture and mineral processing industries. The chemicals and plastics manufacturing industry value adds in the order of $11.1 billion and provides about 53,000 jobs (please consult the data card below for accurate source information including data publication years).
The department aims to facilitate increased productivity, sustainability, competitiveness and growth of the Australian chemicals and plastics industry by fostering an environment that allows businesses to innovate and capitalise on global opportunities. The department assists other Australian Government agencies to ensure the interests of the sector are taken into account during policy development and liaises with industry stakeholders on new or changing policies. We also produce a data card on the status of the chemicals and plastics manufacturing sector which is updated regularly. The previous edition of the data card is available for historical purposes.
Inquiries can be directed to the Manager, Chemicals and Plastics, Manufacturing Division, (02) 6213 6398.