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Patent box

First introduced in last year’s budget, the patent box regime is designed to encourage medical and biotechnology companies to innovate and commercialise their patented inventions here in Australia, by providing those companies with an effective tax rate of 17% on eligible “patent box income”.

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Although these measures are still yet to be legislated, the Government has announced further expansions to the patent box.

Expanding patent box regime to agricultural sector innovations

The Government will expand the patent box to the agriculture sector by extending eligible patents to include patents linked to:

  • Eligible Plant Breeder’s Rights (PBRs);
  • Agricultural and veterinary (agvet) chemical products listed on the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA); and
  • Agvet chemical products listed on the PubCRIS (Public Chemicals Registration Information System) register

These measures will apply to patents granted or issued after 29 March 2022 and for income years starting on or after 1 July 2023.

Expanding patent box regime to low emissions technology innovations

As part of the Government’s target to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, the patent box will also be expanded to technologies that have the potential to lower emissions.

The patents must relate to “low emissions technology” as set out in the Government’s 2020 Technology and Investment Roadmap Discussion Paper or its 2021 Future Annual Low Emissions Technology Statements.

These measures will also apply to patents granted or issued after 29 March 2022 and for income years starting on or after 1 July 2023.

Commercialisation of university research projects

$505.2 million is to be spent over 5 years from 2021-22 for “Australia’s Economic Accelerator” grants to commercialise university research projects from the proof-of-concept and proof-of-scale stages.

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Funded projects must align with the National Manufacturing Priorities (resources technology & critical minerals processing, food, medical products, recycling & clean energy, defence and space) and take on industry partners.

A further $150.0 million is to be allocated over 5 years from 2021-22 for equity funding for the CSIRO’s Innovation Fund via Main Sequence Ventures. The focus will again be on Australia’s Economic Accelerator projects with high commercialisation potential to reach at-scale test and prototype stages.

Regional Accelerator Program

The Government will spend $2.0 billion over 5 years from 2022-23 under the Regional Accelerator Program targeting regional infrastructure, manufacturing, skills and training, R&D and education.

Boosting the Modern Manufacturing Strategy

The Modern Manufacturing Strategy was first introduced in the 2020-21 Federal Budget to support Australian manufacturers to scale, improve competitiveness and build more resilient supply chains across six priority sectors:

  1. Resources technology and critical minerals processing
  2. Food & beverage
  3. Medical products
  4. Recycling & clean energy
  5. Defence
  6. Space
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In this year’s Federal Budget, the Government announced an additional $328.3 million of funding across the next 5 years to further support the Modern Manufacturing Strategy and address critical supply chain vulnerabilities.

Key features of the additional funding measures include:

  • $250 million to extend the Modern Manufacturing Initiative to support businesses in the six priority sectors to deliver high-impact projects.
  • $53.9 million to extend the Manufacturing Modernisation Fund to support technology adoption in the six priority sectors.
  • $8.9 million to develop Manufacturing Investment Plans to guide government and industry investment in the six priority sectors.

Export Market Development Grant

The Government announced an additional $80 million of funding over the next 4 years to the Export Market Development Grants program, which supports export-ready Australian businesses establish their presence in overseas markets.

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