“The Australian Government’s announcement today to invest almost $800m in the JobMaker Digital Business Plan to provide incentives to digital technology uptake and remove outdated regulatory barriers should help businesses become more sustainable and competitive along the economic road to recovery,” Innes Willox, Chief Executive of the national employer association Ai Group, said today.
“COVID-19 has highlighted how many businesses are essential to our economy and digital technologies has been an enabler for many to remain open for business. This unstable environment also presents an opportunity for industry to emerge more globally competitive by taking fuller advantage of Industry 4.0 and digitalisation.
“The Government’s announced initiatives has the potential to build on inadvertent gains made by businesses and the community adapting to COVID restrictions, while also closing the gap during this turbulent period.
“These include areas such as:
- Improving efficiency, security and access to government online services
- Modernising digital infrastructure including accelerating deployment of 5G in a range of industrial sectors
- Increasing digital capabilities for SMEs including providing access to digital skills training
- Boosting Australia’s influence in international standards
“These measures build on and complement the Government’s recently announced $4.5 billion NBN investment plan and $1.67 billion investment in the 2020 Cyber Security Strategy.
“We look forward to working with the Government on the delivery of these various initiatives. This will be especially important where regulatory reforms may arise. If implemented well, the Government’s announced measures will contribute to developing Australian business capabilities and encouraging business innovation – key elements of the medium-to-longer-term agenda to lift productivity and economic performance and to build the resilience of our economy. These themes are covered in greater depth in Ai Group’s Post Pandemic Policy Papers.
“Ai Group has made several further recommendations for the October Federal Budget to spur the digital and cyber security capabilities of Australian businesses and the community. We encourage the Government to consider implementing these measures in the Budget,” Mr Willox said.