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Type: Journal article
Title: The Politics and Policy of Economic Restructuring in Australia: Understanding government Responses to the Closure of an Automotive Plant
Author: Beer, A.
Thomas, H.
Citation: Space and Polity, 2007; 11(3):243-261
Publisher: Routledge
Issue Date: 2007
ISSN: 1356-2576
Statement of
Andrew Beer and Holli Thomas
Abstract: In April 2004, Mitsubishi Motors Australia Ltd (MMAL) announced the closure of its foundry and engine-making plant at Lonsdale in southern Adelaide. The closure resulted in 700 involuntary redundancies with a further 400 positions lost at MMAL's Tonsley Park plant through voluntary redundancies. The loss of jobs and associated economic activity were a major shock to southern Adelaide, a relatively poor region with few large manufacturing establishments, a limited economic infrastructure and a relatively unskilled labour force. The region had suffered setbacks in the previous three years with a downturn in the wine industry and the closure of the nearby Mobil Oil Refinery at Port Stanvac. This paper draws on debates around multiscalar governance in order to understand how governments have responded to employment loss in southern Adelaide. The paper pays particular attention to the balance between regional and industry-focused initiatives and suggests that regions need to ensure they occupy a central position within the strategies and actions of governments. The paper also highlights the vulnerability of regions that lack growth coalitions able to operate as effective advocates for their region.
Rights: © 2007 Taylor & Francis
DOI: 10.1080/13562570701811569
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