“We’re in danger of falling out of the G20 in large part because other countries are growing in population and they’re going through that urbanisation cycle,” he said.
“We are on a slippery slope to global irrelevance, if you consider the size of the economy as the ticket to play.
“It just puts pressure on us to have a long-term plan to be productive and to be innovative and to compete on a world scale even though we are smaller.”
He said Australia must move away from dependence on mining and invest more in science and technology.
“We really need to have a long-term plan for innovation and that probably means investing in STEM: science, technology, engineering and maths,” he said.
“We really need to see that as the future jobs for our children.”
By Anita Savage, staff