The plan is a “huge win for the Australian blockchain sector” says National Blockchain Lead Chloe White
The Morrison-led Australian government announced a $547 million Digital Business Plan aimed at economic recovery in the country through a press release this week. The plan includes seven-figure grants towards distributed ledger technology initiatives.
The COVID-19 global pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital technologies by Australian businesses and consumers prompting the government to invest about $800 million to enable businesses to take advantage of digital technologies.
Announced ahead of next week’s Federal Government Budget by Prime Minister Scott Morrison, the plan outlines $6.9 million in support for “two blockchain pilots directed at reducing business compliance costs.”
Speaking about the thought behind the Digital Business Plan, the PM said “The plan supports Australia’s economic recovery by removing out-dated regulatory barriers, boosting the capability of small businesses, and backs the uptake of technology across the economy.”
Treasurer Josh Frydenberg explained that the Digital Infrastructure package is estimated to increase Australia’s GDP by $6.4 billion a year by 2024 and around $1.5 billion of this additional economic activity is estimated to flow to regional Australia each year
Piper Alderman partner Michael Bacina told Cointelegraph that the two blockchain projects are important to help demonstrate and unlock the value of blockchain. “With blockchain adoption accelerating around the world, this funding is a very welcome boost to the Australian blockchain industry and our local expertise,” Bacina said.
The Digital Business Plan allocates $480 million to various technological initiatives that could intersect distributed ledger technologies, including $183 million towards a new digital identity system, and $301 million for developing a single business register. This will enable businesses to quickly view, update, and maintain their business registry data in one location.
National Blockchain Lead Chloe White from the Department of Industry, Science, Energy, and Resources called the direct funding “a huge win for Australian blockchain today” adding that it “is the biggest investment the Government has made in the sector.”
White has worked closely with blockchain industry leaders towards the development of Australia’s National Blockchain Roadmap. She announced two blockchain working groups for supply chain and educational credentialing and stated that “These pilots will complement the National Blockchain Roadmap, which is driving working groups on RegTech, supply chains, cybersecurity and credentialing.”