BlueScope Steel’s CEO has said the narrowing of its net loss has shown there’s hope for Australian manufacturing.
CEO Paul O’Malley said BlueScope’s Australian manufacturing business “was back” and the result was proof.
“It is our first EBIT profit in four years and it follows some significant restructuring and significant investment in new product development,” The Australian reports him as saying.
“If you undertake structural change and focus on customers and product you can be a successful manufacturer in Australia.”
O’Malley said a further lowering of the dollar would help the sector, which remained an important contributor to the country’s economic diversity and research and development.
Fairfax reports the BlueScope chief as saying the industry wasn’t dead, and just needed improvements in Australia’s policy settings, singling out industrial relations, energy pricing, and simplifying the tax system.
"People who are calling the death of Aussie manufacturing need to look more closely to see we just need the right micro-economic policies," he said.
As reported yesterday, BlueScope announced an underlying profit of $112.3 million, and narrowed its net loss to $82.3 million for the year to June 30.
Improvements in margins and sales volumes were offset by $55 million in restructuring costs and writedowns in the company’s Australian operations worth $87.6 million.
Overall revenue was up to $8 billion from 7.3 billion, The Australian reports.