Collaboration premium for $800m industry grants

James Riley

The Industry department has unveiled guidelines for Australian manufacturers to apply for a share of $800 million under the big-ticket Collaboration Stream of the federal government’s Modern Manufacturing Initiative.

Grants of between $20 million and $200 million are available to large-scale manufacturing projects that have business-to-business collaboration, or business-to-research collaboration at their core. The grants will fund up to 33 per cent of the cost of a project.

The grants available through the Collaboration stream are among the largest awarded through the MMI and aim to boost the long-term transformation of manufacturing in the government’s six manufacturing priority areas.

Collaboration is key to unlocking funding

The aim of the new stream is to build collaboration between businesses, research organisations, investors and others to scale up, move toward higher-value activities, and to become more competitive. A major focus of the program is job-creation.

It also aims to support companies in working together to build manufacturing networks and ecosystems to unlock complementary capabilities.

A key driver for the Collaboration stream of the program is to support long-term job creation and a more highly-skilled workforce in the Australian manufacturing sector, and to increase investment in manufacturing – particularly in higher value-added activities.

Industry Minister Christian Porter said the manufacturing initiative was a part of both charting the economic recovery from COVID-19 and building future resilience.

“Through the Collaboration stream, we are determined to co-invest in industry-led proposals that will transform our National Manufacturing Priority areas, by encouraging manufacturers to move up the value chain to higher value, higher margin activities, including drawing on our world class research,” Mr Porter said.

“This is at the heart of our $1.5 billion Modern Manufacturing Strategy which is all designed to support Australian manufacturers to scale-up, build resilience, become more competitive and create the jobs we need not only now but for generations to come.”

The six priority areas under the Modern Manufacturing Initiative are resources technology and critical minerals processing; food and beverage manufacturing; medical products; recycling and clean energy; the defence sector; and space.

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