Funding opens for advanced bio-manufacturing


AusBiotech welcomes the Government’s support of the biotech industry as it opens the first round of funding for bio-manufacturing and launches its Medical Products’ National Manufacturing Priority road map.

The first round of funding includes $140 million across two streams (Translation and Integration) for the six priority areas; co-funding grants are available of between $1 million to $20 million, of up to 50 per cent of the eligible project expenditure. Applications are open and will close on 29 March 2021.

Read more about the Medical Products road map here.

The road map and concomitant funding are aimed at helping Australian companies build long-term business collaboration at scale, translating research into commercial outcomes and bringing new products to market, and integrating local firms to deliver products and services into global value chains.

AusBiotech has worked with the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources as the road map was being developed. As the national voice of the biotechnology sector for 35 years, AusBiotech remains committed to amplifying opportunities, reducing barriers, and communicating the industry’s concerns. It welcomed the opening of the first round of funding, having actively advocated for policy to complement the RDTI and directly incentivise advanced manufacturing for more than 10 years.

AusBiotech CEO Lorraine Chiroiu said, “This support continues to signify the Government’s endorsement of the potential of the Australian biotechnology industry. Our companies need a supportive system throughout the entire pipeline in order to commercialise, manufacture and deliver new technologies for patients in Australia and across the globe.

"Supporting Australia’s medical product manufacturing means supporting biotech’s innovative industry, its research expertise, and its highly-skilled workforce. It is a ‘salute’ to the impact that Australian biotechnology has in improving health and wellbeing, and for Australia’s economy.

“This is not a ‘standing start’; it is supporting Australia’s existing and strong life science foundations upon which, as a smart nation, we can leverage and accelerate, taking industry to the next level.

“Investment in this sector is not only is important for recovering from the COVID-19 recession and for building our economy for the future but also can provide critical defence against some of the health impacts arising from this and future pandemics.”

The sector has access to the funding that was announced during the October 2020 Federal Budget, where the Modern Manufacturing Initiative (MMI), part of the Australian Government’s Modern Manufacturing Strategy, will invest a total of $1.3 billion over five years and across six priority areas, including medical products.

The Department’s new road map outlines measurable success factors for advanced bio-manufacturing, which will dovetail into AusBiotech’s broader Biotech Blueprint: the decadal framework for the sector. AusBiotech’s Biotech Blueprint is an opportunity for the industry to speak with one voice to governments, identifying key policy priorities that can deliver benefits both for the industry and for the nation. This includes the steps to be taken in the near-term to ensure that biotech’s positive future is realised and to reflect what a vibrant and valuable Australian biotech industry could and should look like a decade from now.