How to fix the industry council problem

The industry council, a key part of the Government’s business strategy, has been plagued by dysfunction and missed deadlines.

The organisation has been repeatedly criticised by industry groups and critics for its failure to properly consider industry concerns and priorities.

“It’s a mess,” said Michael Wood, chief executive of the Australian Business Council.

“[There’s] no accountability, there’s no real accountability for what the organisation does and what it does not do, and they have no real oversight.”

Industry group says industry council has failed to deliver on its promise to tackle ‘unacceptable’ problemsIndustry groups are calling on the Government to make changes to the industry councils’ structure.

Ahead of its annual meeting, the industry body announced plans to overhaul its board, which will include two independent directors and one independent member.

Its chief executive, John Gee, said the move would make the organisation more accountable and “help to restore confidence in the sector”.

“The way that the industry has been run for some time, that’s not working,” Mr Gee said.

He said the new structure would ensure the industry is “more accountable” and better informed about its business priorities.

“I want to reassure the industry that we will deliver on the promises we made,” he said.

Mr Gee is the first person to be appointed to the new board.

But he is not the only person facing criticism.

Andrew Leach, CEO of the Victorian Industry Council, said he was concerned about the organisation’s “poor performance”.

“They’ve done a poor job of engaging with the industry, I think it’s a lack of leadership and a lack the confidence of their customers,” he told the ABC.

Industry council’s business agenda, but no transparencyThe industry council’s new board will need to meet regularly with the Industry Minister, Andrew Robb, and his chief of staff, Simon Jones.

Mr Robb has said he will hold an urgent public consultation on the organisation before deciding what to do.


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