Harwood Marine is chasing general engineering work to keep its workforce busy until its slipway is back in action.
Harwood Marine is chasing general engineering work to keep its workforce busy until its slipway is back in action. Jojo Newby

Keeping jobs afloat

Federal MP Luke Hartsuyker has backed Harwood Marine's commitment to giving young people the opportunity to learn a trade and work.

Mr Hartsuyker said despite a challenging period for the Port of Yamba, the lower Clarence Valley business remained an important part of the region's economy and a significant employer with a long-term vision for marine jobs in the area.

"As part of the Clarence Valley Marine and Engineering Cluster, Harwood Marine is focused on working with all levels of government to be more productive, innovative and competitive. In recent years they have secured a number of significant boat-building contracts, which have created many employment opportunities for local people," Mr Hartsuyker said.

"This has delivered real economic benefits for families and the local community in the Clarence Valley, and I welcome that as a local MP.

"It is also very encouraging that Harwood Marine employs so many young people. Out of their 45 staff, 47% are under the age of 25. The company also employs 14 apprentices, which is giving those employees the chance to learn valuable skills and secure important qualifications.

"As the Federal Assistant Minister for Employment, I recently participated in a roundtable discussion in Sydney as part of the Generation Success initiative. Generation Success is a business-led commitment to addressing youth unemployment across the nation.

"One of the key take-outs from the roundtable with young people was the importance of getting that first job and how that can provide a pathway to a lifetime of employment.

"Harwood Marine is certainly playing an important role in delivering such career opportunities in the Clarence Valley.

"The increased economic activity generated by recent boat building and maintenance contracts has also benefited other local businesses and supported many indirect jobs.

"The company's management know its competitive advantage and the importance of growing in a sustainable way in order to deliver further economic development on the north coast.

"I look forward to working with the company in a proactive way so that further growth opportunities can be realised."



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