The Victorian Government is helping an iconic Victorian manufacturer create jobs and expand its exports.

Minister for Industry and Employment Ben Carroll visited KR Castlemaine yesterday to announce a grant from the government to create 50 jobs and help transition 250 casual positions to permanent jobs.

KR Castlemaine is undertaking a $4 million Building Capability project to boost its workforce and export capability, which will also provide increased job security for the Castlemaine workforce.

The project will create a new production line for product development for export markets, creating new jobs and upskilling existing casual positions to build workforce capability.

The Victorian Government’s Jobs Victoria initiative has helped KR Castlemaine establish a tailored support program to introduce potential employees to the work they will be doing and providing language support for jobseekers.

Since 2017, Jobs Victoria has supported around 70 jobseekers from the Loddon Campaspe region and the western suburbs of Melbourne into employment with KR Castlemaine, many of whom are refugees.

Several Jobs Victoria participants have moved from Melbourne to the local area, and some have now been able to purchase homes because they have secure employment.

Victoria’s manufacturing industry contributes $27.7 billion to the Victorian economy, with over 13,000 businesses employing more than 286,000 people. It also exported $18.16 billion of manufactured goods in 2016-17.

Jobs Victoria has helped more than 7500 Victorian jobseekers find work, including more than 500 asylum seekers and refugees.