Boost for tech entrepreneurs
ROBOTICS, medical science and biofuel innovations will be targeted in the Premier’s $ 180 million Advance Queensland Budget centrepiece.
Entrepreneurs will be able to tap into funds to set up new technological businesses and tax incentives provided for research and development companies to relocate to Queensland, while more money will be pumped into attracting top researchers to the state.
While Queensland has produced internationally renowned advances, such as Professor Ian Frazer’s cervical cancer vaccine, Treasurer Curtis Pitt said more investment was needed if Queensland was to “thrive as a global innovation hub”.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said Advance Queensland was about diversifying the economy and creating jobs.
“We know if we diversify our economy, teach students the new areas of STEM ( science, technology engineering and mathematics), coding and robotics, we are well placed to meet the demands of the changing world,” she said.
Key aspects of the Advance Queensland include a $ 40 million business investment attraction fund to encourage coinvestment and venture capital investment in budding Queensland tech- businesses, as well as $ 25 million to go towards research and development projects.
Another $ 24 million has been set aside to expand “incubators” focused on developing start- up, technology- based businesses or products.
There will also be an effort to attract new technologybased start- up companies, par- ticularly in fields such as robotics, biofuel and agricultural advancement, as well as luring expert researchers to the state to boost areas like medical research.
Mr Pitt said companies established through Advance Queensland programs would be given three- year payroll tax exemptions.