SIBA|GITA welcomes Federal Budget tech boost

By on 17 May, 2021

Image courtesy Jim Bowen/Wikimedia Commons, CC BY 3.0

The investment boost for the digital economy, national infrastructure, defence and national security announced in the Federal Budget has been welcomed by the spatial industry.

SIBA|GITA chair, Alistair Byrom, said that the “investment in the digital strategy, artificial intelligence and emerging technology as part of the $1.2 billion announced for the digital economy and tax incentives” will “support businesses across our sector to continue to drive innovation”.

“Our members comprise small to large enterprises and operate across specialist fields such as surveying, spatial and geospatial technologies and data analysis, software development, business consultancy, remote sensing, drones (RPAS), space technologies, to name a few,” Byrom said.

The government has increased the 10-year infrastructure pipeline to $110 billion, supporting 100,000 jobs through projects currently under construction.

Investments and programs underway or announced include:

  • An Australian Data Strategy to create a data-driven economy through better data use
  • $40.2 million to deliver the Digital Atlas of Australia
  • $16.5 million for a pilot program to make the Australian Government’s data assets discoverable and support whole-of-economy reuse
  • $10.7 million for the Digital Skills Cadetship Trial to deliver work-based learning opportunities for in-demand digital jobs
  • $22.6 million over six years for Next Generation Emerging Technology Graduates Program that will provide more than 200 competitive national scholarships in emerging technologies
  • $53.8 million over four years to create the National Artificial Intelligence Centre that will drive business adoption of AI technologies by coordinating the nation’s AI expertise and capabilities
  • $33.7 million over four years to support Australian businesses to partner with government to pilot projects for AI-based solutions to national challenges
  • $12 million over five years to catalyse the AI opportunity in our region by co-funding up to 36 competitive grants to develop AI solutions that address local or regional problems
  • $13.3 million for the Australian Space Agency for regulatory and technical advisory capacity and the growth of industry
  • A National Emerging Aviation Technology Policy Statement to set the framework for managing new technologies
  • $32.6 million over two years for an Emerging Aviation Technology Partnerships program to support the use of emerging aviation technologies to address priority community, mobility and cargo needs across regional Australia
  • Scope for the development of the National Drone Detection Network

“SIBA|GITA members are significant contributors to Australia’s emerging knowledge economy,” said Byrom.

“Many reinvest profit back into research and development and are world-class innovators with considerable untapped potential for driving high value exports.

“We look forward to seeing greater opportunities emerge for our members over the coming years, he said.

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