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Australia is built on a base of manufacturing innovation and technology. As one of the world leaders in this industry over the past century, the country has long depended on this sector for employment and economy growth.
However, in recent years, it is fair to say that the manufacturing industry has struggled. Under extreme pressure from the Global Financial Crisis and other economic conditions, many businesses have been forced to close their doors.
According to the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, the manufacturing industry still contributes over 6 per cent of Australia’s GDP as of the 2014/15 financial year. As a result, the federal government has announced a $30 million boost to two important manufacturing states – Victoria and South Australia.
Next Generation Manufacturing Investment Programme
The government will offer grants between $500,000 and $2.5 million to manufacturing businesses undergoing various projects.
This $90 million investment program is a direct response to the local car manufacturing industry shutdown over the coming years. In an attempt to support other sectors, the government will offer grants between $500,000 and $2.5 million to manufacturing businesses undergoing various projects.
Round one of this program took place last year with 26 businesses successfully gaining grants. Now, round two is open with another $30 million up for grabs.
Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science Christopher Pyne explained the mission of the investment programme.
“This competitive grants round will support more businesses to invest in manufacturing operations driven by technological innovation, advanced processes, and a highly skilled workforce.
“Helping these firms invest in extending their manufacturing capabilities will deliver strong economic benefits for South Australia and Victoria. I encourage any eligible businesses looking to invest in high value manufacturing capabilities to apply for this new funding round, which will provide an additional $30 million in support,” he said.
Manufacturing industry sees positive 2016 opening
As mentioned above, the manufacturing industry has had its fair share of issues in recent years. However, couple statistics from the Australian Industry Group/Australian Performance of Manufacturing Index and the possibilities from the investment programme and the future is looking bright.
In January, the manufacturing industry finished at 51.5 points, indicating expansion rather than contraction. This result was support by half the manufacturing sub-sectors which also showed great growth. These included wood and paper products (64.3 points), petroleum, coal, chemical and rubber products (59.1 points), food, beverages and tobacco (56.7 points) and textiles, clothing, furniture and other manufacturing (50.1 points).
Of course, with more growth and innovation investment, manufacturing businesses should be looking at options to enhance productivity. One way is through plastic pallets from Eco Pallets.
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