CRA Welcomes investment in Commercialisation and Steady Commitment to Science and Research in Budget 

In what was a ‘steady-as-she-goes’ budget for science and industry-research collaboration, Cooperative Research Australia welcomed new support for commercialisation with the establishment of the $392 million Industry Growth Program as a pipeline to the National Reconstruction Fund. 

“The Industry Growth Fund is a welcome addition to the support mechanisms to harness Australian research capacity and smarts from fundamental research right through to scaled up manufacturing and impact,” said Cooperative Research Australia CEO Jane O’Dwyer. 

“It is pleasing to see steady and ongoing commitment to our national science agencies, research funding and critical programs including the Cooperative Research Centres Program and National Critical Research Infrastructure. 

The next big challenge for Government will be to unlock greater investment in R&D for Australia through a combination of mechanisms, including those that unlock greater private sector investment and participation in research and development to drive economic change and growth.  In the long term, greater complexity in our economy will benefit all Australia’s by generating the jobs and prosperity that secure our future. 

“We commend the Government on their support on the development of critical technologies with the provision of $116 million over 5 years from 2022-23, including a boost for businesses to integrate quantum and artificial intelligence into their operations. 

“Investment of $14.8 million over 4 years from 2023-24 to establish the Powering Australia Industry Growth Centre to develop advanced technology and skills as part of the Government’s Australian Made Battery Plan is a welcome commitment to our Future Battery Industries. 

The Universities Accord process will be critical to growing our education and research capacity, the essential platform for Australia’s ability to create a more complex and competitive economy. 

“It is also great to see a recognition of national capacity embedded in post-CRC entities, with the Autism CRC receiving ongoing funding as part of the $3.7 million in 2023-24 to undertake consultation and research for the National Autism Strategy. This recognition that the capacity seeded by CRC’s having ongoing benefit to the nation after their original program funding ends is a welcome one.”