Manufacturing encouraged to share in $24.8 million

Member for Gippsland East, Tim Bull, today announced that the Victorian Coalition is encouraging manufacturers in the East Gippsland area to invest in new technology that will increase productivity and competitiveness, under a new $24.8 million program.

Mr Bull said, the Investing in Manufacturing Technology (IMT) program would provide grants of up $250,000 to support Victorian manufacturers in adopting new technologies.

“The IMT program is a key part of the Victorian Government’s $58 million manufacturing industry assistance package, announced in the 2012-13 Budget,” Mr Bull said.

“The Victorian Coalition recognises that there are challenges in manufacturing including the high Australian dollar and the higher energy costs under the proposed carbon tax, but is committed to ensuring any financial assistance to manufacturers is based on an increase in productivity, diversification of products or new lines or investments, that will enable companies to compete in new international markets.

“There is great resilience in the Victorian manufacturing sector in the East Gippsland region, and I was pleased to see manufacturing jobs rose for the second consecutive quarter, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics labour force data released 14 June.

“There are great examples in the East Gippsland area in manufacturing across a number of sectors, and I have seen first-hand how businesses continually meet challenges and I encourage all local manufacturing businesses, small and large to apply for these grants,” Mr Bull said.

Applications for IMT Round One are open from 18 June 2012 to 20 July 2012, with total funding of up to $3 million available in this round. Grants will be allocated on a competitive basis and will require a minimum co-contribution from the business of $3 for every $1 granted.

An outline of the program, key dates, application process, eligibility criteria, assessment process and reporting requirements can be found at www.business.vic.gov.au/imt or call Business Victoria on 13 22 15.