Pre Budget submission calls for strategic investment

Research Australia’s Pre-Budget submission to the Treasurer acknowledges the progress made since the election. This includes putting Australian innovation and industry on a stronger footing by introducing the legislation to create the National Reconstruction Fund and Australia’s Economic Accelerator (first proposed by the previous Government). These measures are recognition the Government shares Research Australia’s view that it is no longer good enough to just sell off our best ideas to the rest of the world.

Australia has world leading health and medical research but current investment is inadequate, poorly aligned and failing to deliver on the potential health and economic benefits. In summary, Research Australia has recommended:

    • A National Medical Products Industry Plan with the aim of Australia becoming a net exporter. This can capitalise on the Government’s commitment to the National Reconstruction Fund, and help secure Australia’s national security, by manufacturing more of the products we rely on here in Australia.
    •  A National Health and Medical Research and Innovation Workforce Plan to ensure we have the workforce we need for the future.
    • A national stocktake of health and medical research and development activity across Australia
    • A new Clinician Researcher Fellowship Scheme to help drive innovation efficiency and improved equity in our health system
    • Increased investment in research and development, especially through the funding programs of The National Health and Medical Research Council and the Australian Research Council.

Read Research Australia’s submission.

A patent box tax concession for Australia

Research Australia welcomed the Government’s announcement in the May 2021 Budget that it would introduce a patent box tax concession for the medical and biotechnology sector. As part of the further development of this proposal, the Australian Treasury has issued a consultation paper, outlining the key features. Research Australia’s response addresses several major concerns with the proposal including the focus on incentivising licensing but not manufacturing, and limiting eligibility to patents granted in Australia.

We are working with our membership and other key stakeholders across the sector, and look forward to engaging further with Treasury as the development of the patent box continues.

Research Australia’s submission is available here.

Medical Products Roadmap Consultation

Research Australia has responded to the consultation being undertaken by the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources to support the development of a Medical Products Manufacturing Roadmap under the Modern Manufacturing Initiative announced in the October 2020 Budget. Medical products is one of six strategic areas being targeted under the MMI for Government spending of $1.3 billion over five years.

The Consultation was undertaken using an electronic survey restricted the length of the response to each question. Research Australia’s response emphasises:

    • the opportunity to support the manufacture of products and materials for clinical trials;
    • the opportunity this provides to scale to full scale manufacturing, keeping the full scale manufacturing of medical products developed in Australia on shore; and
    • the opportunity to support manufacturing in high value medical products.

Research Australia’s submission is available here.  These proposals were further developed in Research Australia’s January 2021 Pre Budget submission, available here.

The Government subsequently released the Medical Products National Manufacturing Priority Roadmap in February 2021. Research Australia’s proposal to support manufacturing for clinical trials as part of the Roadmap was adopted, and identified as a pathway to scaling up of manufacturing capability. The Roadmap is available here.