The federal government has introduced legislation to Parliament to establish the $15 billion National Reconstruction Fund, what it says is a key election commitment.
The National Reconstruction Fund (NRF) will support, diversify, and transform Australia’s industry and economy, helping to create secure, well-paid jobs, securing future prosperity, and driving sustainable economic growth.
It will invest across seven priority areas of the economy: renewables and low emission technologies; medical science; transport; value-add in agriculture, forestry and fisheries; value-add in resources; defence capability; and enabling capabilities.
The NRF is modelled on Labor’s successful Clean Energy Finance Corporation. It will be governed by an independent board making independent investment decisions.
It will be able to invest through a range of financing including loans, equity and guarantees.
The Government has today begun public consultation to further define the scope of the seven priority areas for investment and how the fund will make investment decisions.
“The National Reconstruction Fund will play a key part in ensuring Australia is a country that makes things. It will help create secure local jobs, boost sovereign capability and diversify our nation’s industry and economy. The National Reconstruction Fund will help Australia capture the opportunities of today and tomorrow, building on our natural and competitive strengths to create a future made in Australia.” said Prime Minister Anthony Albanese.
“The pandemic made it clear that Australia must be a country that supports local businesses and industries to make more things here. This is a great opportunity to support Australian innovation and industry after years of uncertainty and lack of a plan. The National Reconstruction Fund is about building a better future for all Australians, right here on Australian shores.” said Minister For Finance Katy Gallagher.
“This is a nation-building fund; and represents one of the largest peacetime investments in our country’s manufacturing capability in living memory. The National Reconstruction Fund will be the connective tissue between human capital and Australia’s technological potential. It is one way we will realise our ambition to better connect industry to science; to ensure Australian-made discoveries can be commercialised and scaled in Australia. We are taking a collaborative approach and consulting across industry, the finance sector, unions and the community on the implementation of the NRF. This consultation is a crucial first step to guide these significant investments.” said Minister For Industry And Science Ed Husic.