Community What's Happening Northern Inland Skilled Migration Project



The 6th Regional Development Australia Northern Inland (RDANI) skilled migration case study video has just gone online and it is important viewing, according to RDANI Chair Russell Stewart.


“This case study shows how critical skilled migration has been for the growth of DD’s Engineering & Fabrication in Moree. It also shows why some skilled migrants settle in and contribute to our communities long-term,” he said.


RDANI Skilled Migration Project Officer Gary Fry said that the attraction and retention of skilled labour remains a real challenge for this region and particularly in the North West. “DD's Engineering & Fabrication in Moree is a great example of why the skilled migration work of RDANI is vital to the economic development of our region,” he said.


DD’s Engineering & Fabrication is a home-grown business in Moree. The business was conceived and developed by company Director Donald Devney, who was born and raised in Moree. It services (predominantly) irrigation and broadacre agribusiness clients throughout remote north-western NSW and south-central Queensland.


“When I first kicked off in 1994, I actually thought my hardest problem would be finding the work to keep me going but I soon found out that finding skilled staff in a rural community was to be our biggest challenge,” he said in the video.


DD’s Engineering & Fabrication actively does what it can to employ and upskill locals. It currently boasts a workforce of 15, five of whom are apprentices. “They (the apprentices) often move on and we always need qualified, skilled and experienced staff who we can count on,” Mr. Devney said. “We have employed skilled migrant boiler makers since 2007 and our business has seen considerable growth as a result.”


Mr. Fry explained that in locations such as Moree, retention of skilled labour is as important an issue as attraction. “As of August 2017, Savenaca Seeto had been working as a boiler maker at DD’s Engineering & Fabrication for almost 11 years. He and his family are an important contribution to a regional community, as well as a growing regional business,” he said.


In the case study video, Mr. Seeto details why he has settled in the town of Moree with his wife and seven children. “Moree is a small town and there’s a lot of work around. We’ve been busy for the last 10 years.”


“I prefer living here because the rent is so much cheaper than the city and if we want to go somewhere on a family holiday, it’s easy to save up,” he said.


“In Moree, the lifestyle is very convenient. If I want to go to the shops or the school, it’s only a few minutes in the car. We only have two traffic lights in the middle of town. We’ve got everything we need here (in Moree).”


MEDIA RELEASE: Regional Development Australia - Northern Inland