The Victorian State Government recently launched the Made in Victoria – Manufacturing Growth Program, a government fund aimed at supporting job creation through investment in sectors where Victoria has a competitive advantage, to ensure that industry thrives and is sustainable for the future.
Victorian manufacturing is a significant contributor to Australia’s economy, providing 30% of the nation’s manufacturing output (Made in Victoria 2030: Manufacturing Statement). However, the industry has faced challenges over the past couple of years throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The Made in Victoria – Manufacturing Growth Program aims to address these challenges by providing financial assistance to local manufacturers.
The program will assist small and medium manufacturers with an existing presence in Victoria to:
- Expand their capacity and capability by implementing new manufacturing technologies
- Improve productivity and competitiveness in local and global supply chains
- Create new jobs, upskill and reskill workers, and
- Support the transition to a low carbon economy.
The funding benefit
The Made in Victoria – Manufacturing Growth Program will provide grants on a 1:2 basis (government:successful applicant). Grants of between $50,000 and $250,000 are available on a competitive basis.
- Be a registered legal entity with an ABN.
- Be registered for WorkCover with WorkSafe Vic.
- Agree to meet co-contribution requirements.
- Be currently engaged in manufacturing or the manufacturing supply chain or demonstrate a genuine commercial connection to the manufacturing supply chain in Victoria.
- Employ at least 20 FTE staff or have an annual turnover of greater than $1.5 million. Preference will be given to applicants with less than 200 FTE staff and an annual turnover of less than $100 million.
- Agree to conduct the proposed activities in Victoria.
- Have met all industrial relations obligations as an employer in accordance with the National Employment Standards.
- Participate in future program evaluation activity.
- Provide audited financial reports for the last three financial years.
During this stage of the grant selection process, the Department of Jobs, Skills, Industry and Regions will assess and rank all eligible applications against the following against merit criteria. The applicant must be able to describe:
- The project’s need for government support.
- How the project will lead to sustainable job creation and skills development.
- How the project will support the business’ increased productivity and competitiveness within its sector.
- The business’ capacity and capability to successfully deliver the proposed project.
- How the project will contribute to the sector’s capability.
- The environmental benefits of its proposed project.
The Department of Jobs, Skills, Industry and Regions will award grants to applications that that offer the ‘best value for money’ (i.e. scored highly against all merit criteria).
What can the grant be used for?
Applicant businesses should note that grant monies can only be used on ‘eligible activities’ and ‘eligible expenditure’. Eligible activities are activities that involve investment into capital equipment and associated project expenditure related to manufacturing product and process improvements, prototyping, evaluation and testing of new products and processes and supply chain capability development.
Application process and grant obligations
Applications for the Made in Victoria – Manufacturing Growth Program will have to be lodged online with supporting documentation that address all eligibility and merit criteria. The amount of detail and supporting evidence provided should be relative to the project size, complexity and grant amount requested.
Successful applicants will receive a written offer to enter into a grant agreement (i.e. contract) with the Department of Jobs, Skills, Industry and Regions. Grantees will be required to submit progress reports during the grant period (e.g. project milestones, project expenditure and expenditure of grant funds).
Applications for the Made in Victoria – Manufacturing Growth Program will close on 6 April 2023. Please contact us to discuss your eligibility for this program and how we can assist with the application process.