MTAQ: Chair Paul Peterson December 2020 Message

As the 2020 calendar year draws to a close, my thoughts settle on the MTA Queensland family spread out across the state. To our diverse members and staff, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a prosperous and peaceful New Year.

The last year has been a tumultuous one that no one could have possibly predicted. Undoubtedly, the challenges ahead arising from technological, climate and economic changes, and the COVID-19 pandemic, must be confronted with intelligence, tenacity, and resilience. Through the difficulties of the pandemic, MTA Queensland has remained dedicated to supporting its members. The corporate office ensured both individuals and businesses were equipped with current and accurate National and Queensland Government health advice through daily COVID-19 briefings.

As restrictions ease and business conditions improve, the innovative thinking of automotive businesses will continue to drive the industry forward and ensure a strong return. The economic outlook is promising as members around Queensland begin to re-hire and increase hours to meet the gradual upturn of trade.

The needs of our members underpin MTA Queensland’s priorities and goals. Our strategic plan focused on ‘service excellence’ by which we worked to provide members with the tools to help protect and manage their businesses throughout this past year.

I am pleased to see MTA Queensland’s leadership team prominent throughout the pandemic, guiding the processes and procedures to help sustain members and staff alike. Our industry is working through its way through the economic recovery phase, and we will continue to actively listen to the industry concerns and drive any changes deemed necessary.

Fundamental to economic recovery are the skill and workforce needed by the industry to restore productivity, job security and employment that was lost during the pandemic. MTA Queensland is conscious that its role is paramount as the largest independent provider of automotive apprenticeships and training in the state; delivering the labor quality needed by the industry and being influential advocates in the development of skill promoting policies.

We are proud to be the ‘industry skills advisor’ for the Queensland Department of Employment, Small Business and Training. In this capacity we worked closely together throughout the year, providing advice on the automotive skill needs and the funding of qualifications to appropriately meet the demands of the industry. Following strong partnership between the MTA and the Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills, Shannon Fentiman, the Federal Government approved a significant investment in training and development for the motor industry. This included the provision of increased access for free to low-fee skills training for school leavers and job seekers though the Job Trainer Agreement. This outcome, along with significant investments in the 2020-21 Federal and State budget into the training sector, is keenly welcomed by the industry.

MTA Queensland’s corporate office welcomes Rodd Camm to the leadership role of Group Chief Executive Officer. He has joined the team from his previous role as Principle of the Nous Group.

Well known to MTA Queensland, Rod has extensive experience in the training sector in Australia, having previously spent time working with the National Centre for Vocational Education Research, as well as Skills Queensland. We are excited for the people, culture and skill-based focus Rod will bring to the role, and his leadership, progressing the automotive industry into the coming year and beyond. Welcome Rod!

Finally, MTA Queensland has three major automotive events scheduled for 2021. The Carmageddon symposium will be held on the 22 July and will deliver keynotes and panels discussing new technologies, waste management and recycling innovation, and clean energy that will drive the future of
mobility. The annual Motor Trades Gold Tournament has been set for the 3 September. This event presents a great networking opportunity, as well as the opportunity to compete for a range of prizes. The Industry Awards Gala will be held on the 20 November. This prestigious occasion is filled with entertainment and awards to celebrate the achievements of members and apprentices throughout Queensland. In light of the cancellations this year, we expect these events to be uniquely special.

As we look towards Christmas and the New Year, my best wishes go to all MTA Queensland Group staff. Thank you for your support, professionalism, and service to members and students. To all MTA Queensland members, may the festive season be safe and joyful, and the New Year prosperous.
2021 will be a big year for everyone, let’s make sure we are in a position to take full advantage of that opportunity.

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