The size and importance of the building and construction industry in Victoria should not be underestimated, but a survey of Ministerial portfolios might suggest otherwise. Building and construction is the most important sector for the state in terms of what it delivers to the economy and the community. As we grow more rapidly than any other state in the nation, the sector provides jobs and a huge amount of taxation revenue, but it also delivers the houses and social infrastructure, like roads, transport, parks, hospitals, schools and aged-care facilities, that are required to maintain the high standard of living we come to expect in one of the most liveable places on earth. It is therefore highly appropriate that we establish a Minister for building and construction.

People throughout the state feel the impact and influence of the tremendous work our sector does; aspects of building and construction are scattered widely across numerous Ministerial portfolios such as planning, employment, skills, finance, housing affordability, local government, suburban development and small business, but without singular focus. They are spread so thin that getting traction for change is extremely difficult. Establishing a Minister devoted to overseeing the industry to drive strategy and change for the benefit of communities, individuals and businesses makes clear sense.

In the absence of such a Minister, we face immense challenges in making progress at a time when change and
fast action on critical projects are of the utmost importance to Victorians, like long-needed planning reforms and
trades registration. But if we match the need for reform with the ability to execute those reforms to drive jobs,
business viability and growth for the benefits of all Victorians, it is exciting to think of what could be achieved, and for the good of us all.