Australia to spend on ‘ideas boom’

Canberra, Dec 7 (IANS) The Australian Federal Government is set to spend almost 1.1 billion Australian dollars (about $806 million) in the next four years to promote business-based research, development and innovation with an “ideas boom”.

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull made the announcement here on Monday morning, ABC reported.

A key focus of the plan revolves around strengthening ties between the business community, universities and scientific institutions.

A 200 million Australian dollars innovation fund will co-invest in businesses that develop technology from the CSIRO – Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and Australian universities.

Early stage investors in start-up businesses will get a 20 percent non-refundable tax offset and a capital gains tax exemption. Those investing in new early stage venture capital partnerships will get a 10 percent offset.

Turnbull said the changes would help Australia transition away from the mining boom.

“Our innovation agenda is going to help create the modern, dynamic 21st century economy Australia needs. Unlike a mining boom, it is a boom that can continue forever,” the prime minister said.

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