• Staff Writers

Record Victorian unemployment as Opposition aims to manufacture Mildura miracle

Tim Pallas (right) with Premier Andrews in parliament in February

The Victorian Government has paraded data released on Thursday by the Australian Bureau of Statistics which indicating that the state’s unemployment rate fell to its lowest ever in half a century in January.

Recently released figures also showed a strong surge of females getting jobs in Victoria.

Treasurer Tim Pallas said on Thursday afternoon:

“The underlying strength of the Victorian economy shines through in these figures and that’s great news for workers and businesses across the state.
“We’ve backed businesses and the community with significant support and the benefits are clear to see.”

On Friday the Victorian Nationals continued their Mildura-focussed campaigning with Nationals leader Peter Walsh at regional business Australian Turntables talking up their manufacturing policy.

The Liberals and Nationals have announced a $2.5 billion Bringing Manufacturing Home fund to support businesses to set up operations or expand in our state, with a $1 billion slice guaranteed specifically for regional Victoria. Mr Walsh said:

“Mildura’s manufacturing sector is the biggest contributor to the local economy, generating a $1 billion contribution and more than 1300 local jobs.
“Shifting the focus to locally-produced manufactured goods will create even more new careers for young people in Mildura and the Sunraysia where manufacturing is already a key sector."

The Nationals' public relations blitz in Mildura comes in advance of a November poll where they will hope to regain the long-held Nationals seat, lost to independent Ali Cupper at their last electoral outing.

While Thursday's jobless data appears to suggest the state has navigated through a testing January period with the Omicron variants peak, there are concerns the data may not be entirely reflective of the state’s economic position.

Market Research Company Roy Morgan urged caution in relation to the nationwide 4.2 per cent jobless rate, highlighting that over half a million Australians t work throughout the January reporting month due to either being infected with Covid-19 or as close-contacts in isolation.

Victoria’s jobless rate currently sits at 4.1 per cent, levels not seen since 1974 in the state.