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Australian government announces budget for new fiscal year

May 1, 2021
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Why this is important to Wisconsin businesses: Priorities include infrastructure, agriculture and manufacturing, with major investments planned for projects in these areas.

On May 11, Australia’s 2021-22 Federal Budget was announced, establishing the country’s economic position and fiscal outlook as well as the government’s social and political priorities and how expenditures will be allocated over the coming year to achieve these goals.

In 2021-22, Australia expects to record a budget deficit of $107 billion AUD ($83 billion USD), accounting for 5% of GDP, but expects to cut that nearly in half by 2024-45. Although Australia fared very well through the pandemic compared to other major advanced world economies and rebounded at record pace in the second half of 2020, the budget is largely focused on securing Australia’s recovery through major investments in key sectors and welfare programs.

In particular, the Australian government is making large investments in road/rail, agriculture, and manufacturing/trade and science, creating opportunities for Wisconsin companies doing business in these sectors.

The Australian federal government is moving ahead with its $110 billion AUD ($85 billion USD) 10-year investment pipeline for the Infrastructure Investment Program to improve the infrastructure in every Australian state and territory. The government has committed an additional $15 billion AUD ($11.8 billion USD) to key projects including:

  • $2 billion AUD ($1.5 billion USD) for Melbourne Intermodal Terminal (Victoria)
  • $2 billion AUD ($1.5  billion USD) for Great Western Highway (New South Wales)
  • Bruce Highway upgrades (Queensland)
  • The North-South corridor (South Australia)
  • Further stages of METRONET rail (Western Australia)

Additional projects that may interest Wisconsin exporters include $3.5 billion AUD ($2.7 billion USD) allocated to the National Water Grid Fund, $258 million AUD ($2 million USD) for new dams and irrigation projects, and $172.5 million AUD ($133 million USD) to improve climate and soil data.

In addition, the Modern Manufacturing Strategy (a 10-year plan to position Australia as a high-quality and sustainable manufacturing nation) also includes the following opportunities that Wisconsin companies may be able to align with:

  • The Modern Manufacturing Initiative, a $1.3 billion AUD ($1 billion USD) flagship program to underpin the Modern Manufacturing Strategy
  • The $107 million AUD ($83 million USD) Supply Chain Resilience Initiative, created to identify gaps in Australia’s critical supply chains
  • The $53 million AUD ($41 million USD) Manufacturing Modernization Fund (round two) for business investment in shovel-ready projects

Wisconsin exporters with expertise in any of the sectors highlighted above are encouraged to:

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