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$1.3 billion MMI blasts off with calls for space industry proposals

The HIFiRE 5b rocket launch at Woomera in May 2016. The MMI aims to turbocharge Australia’s space manufacturing eco-system. photo: Defence

The Australian Government’s game-changing investment to super-charge manufacturing and grow jobs has opened for businesses, with applications sought from Australian space companies under the $1.3 billion Modern Manufacturing Initiative (MMI).
Businesses with projects in the space sector will be first to be able to apply for grants to help them commercialise ideas or processes, or integrate into global supply chains.
Minister for Industry, Science and Technology Karen Andrews said the MMI grants program will build on significant investment to date to create meaningful, long-term change for Australian manufacturing.
“This matched government funding is designed to support our manufacturers to become competitive, resilient and scale-up to take on the world, which will in turn create jobs for Australians – both now and for generations to come,” Minister Andrews said.
“Funding from the MMI will help boost investment in the growth of the manufacturing sector, enhance Australia’s reputation, open up new markets, create new skilled jobs and increase exports.”
To guide the types of projects the Government will back in space manufacturing under the MMI, an industry-led road map has also been released.
“This road map sets out our vision for manufacturing investment in the sector, which will complement the excellent work already being done by the Australian Space Agency to grow the economy and create jobs,” Minister Andrews said.
“From products launched into space like nano and small satellites, through to space components like sensors and communication arrays – Australia has a number of unique opportunities across space manufacturing. These opportunities are strengthened by our world-class research, our geographic location and existing advanced manufacturing expertise.”
Space is one of six National Manufacturing Priorities, including Defence, with the remaining road maps to be released in coming weeks to coincide with the opening of their respective MMI funding rounds.
Industry has been the key driver of these manufacturing road maps, while the CSIRO, Industry Innovation and Science Australia and other relevant portfolios have also provided valuable insight that will result in more jobs from the Strategy, the Minister said.
“These road maps will continue to be built on over time to inform the long term strategy and ensure we’re capturing new opportunities to grow these priority sectors and create jobs.”
The road maps will set out a ten year vision for each of the National Manufacturing Priorities and form an integral part of the Government’s transformative Modern Manufacturing Strategy, which will build Australia’s reputation as a reliable and high-value manufacturing nation.
Initial applications will be limited to the Translation and Integration streams of the MMI, with expressions of interest for the larger Collaboration stream to open in coming months.
For more information on the road maps and available grant funding visit

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