Innovation progress anticipated with new ministry


With the swearing-in of the new Federal ministry this week, it is anticipated that work will resume to deliver the National Innovation and Science Agenda.

Chief Executive Officer of AusBiotech, Dr Anna Lavelle, said: “The biotechnology industry welcomes Greg Hunt as the Minister of Industry Innovation and Science and Craig Laundy as the Assistant Minister.

“We look forward to working with the Minister and Assistant Minister to progress the Innovation Agenda. AusBiotech is especially supportive of the Agenda’s proposed Biomedical Translation Fund to support commercialisation, which it sees as a game-changing package that will transform Australia’s ability to commercialise and benefit from our world-class research and development.”

The new program is expected to be established with $250 million from the Federal Government along with matching funds from private investors that will see $500 million invested in the biotech sector – and provide an amplifier effect.

Dr Lavelle said: “The industry remains concerned at the potentially damaging outcome of the review of the R&D Tax Incentive and would be keen to progress discussion on how the program can continue to support its policy intent. This would be a good time to carefully consider the ramifications of changes and to abandon the Coalition’s budget measure to cut the R&D Tax Incentive by 1.5 per cent.

“Despite the disappointing announcement during the election campaign that Labor will now support the 1.5% cut, the industry is hopeful that Minister Hunt will assist in the reassessment of this move.

“In addition to welcoming Minister Hunt, AusBiotech also greets the opportunity to resume work on the Government’s response to the Review of Medicines and Medical Devices Regulation, that will provide industry with savings of around $75 million per annum, by reducing red tape and regulation on the pharmaceutical and medical device industries – which was announced by Minister Ley, as part of the May Federal Budget,” added Dr Lavelle.