Malcolm Turnbull

People smugglers are working more aggressively than ever: Turnbull

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Source: AAP

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull today denied his party is running a scare campaign over asylum seekers and in-turn said people smugglers are working more aggressively.

During a visit to the key Victorian seat of Corangamite today, Malcolm Turnbull was asked about his position on border protection, after opening his speech with remarks on a recent boat turn back.

Mr Turnbull has been accused of running a scare campaign on the issue of asylum seekers after referring again to the increase in boat arrivals under the watch of the previous Labor government.

He said people smugglers are more aggressive than ever.

"They have agents in Australia, they have access to technologies, Smartphones and social media that weren't available in John Howard's day.

"They are very adept marketers, let’s not kid ourselves."

Mr Turnbull also said smugglers are "among the most evil criminals in the world".

"They market and they will market the change, a Labor change to temporary protection visas as an enormous opportunity and there will be more boats and more people smuggling.

"There is no question about that."

$20 million package to boost jobs

Mr Turnbull campaigned in the key Victorian seat armed with a $20 million jobs and investment package.

Most tradesmen the prime minister visited at a Geelong precision manufacturer on Thursday either hadn't seen the ad or remain ambivalent.

Field worker Paul Ogilvie said the tradie in the commercial - lampooned as a fake and later revealed as the real deal - made 'sense'.

But he didn't buy it at first.

"To me it just made me think there's a bit of smokes and mirrors behind it," he told AAP.

"I worked with tradies and he didn't look like a real tradie the way it was set up."

Izet Vrbovac said he related to the tradie initially but then had second thoughts when a social media campaign attacked him as a fake.

"I thought he had a point at first."

Machine operator Carl Dixon wasn't fussed, saying he wouldn't be swayed by either the ad nor Mr Turnbull's visit to the Quickstep manufacturers facility.

"Pretty much everything political comes across to me as spin," he said.

Mr Turnbull used the visit to announce a $20 million jobs and investment package in the marginal Liberal-held seat of Corangamite.

It would provide business innovation grants and improve local infrastructure.

Red tape for Avalon airport would also be removed to open up new tourism and export opportunities.

But Mr Turnbull stressed the package wouldn't be realised unless the coalition was re-elected.

"The truth is Australians can do anything, but you need a clear economic plan," he said.

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