The Queensland Government has pledged $22.7 million to attempt to attract small businesses to move to the state and create new jobs.
The funding is part of an acceleration program for the government’s previously established Advance Queensland initiative, the funding for which will increase from $180 million to $405 million.
Premier and Minister for the Arts Annastacia Palaszczuk announced the investment yesterday as a centrepiece of the state’s budget, to be announced today.
“I’m determined to make Queensland Australia’s innovation leader, which is why I have dramatically increased our investment and broadened our focus to embrace opportunities across the economy,” Palaszczuk said.
The $405 million advancement program is broken down to cover several areas, from tourism to agricultural economy.
The government has pledged $22.7 million towards advancing small business opportunities in the state, which the Premier told the ABC would come in the form of tax breaks and grants.
A further $10 million has been allocated to develop new platform technologies for businesses, including areas such as the Internet of Things and drones.
“It’s an incentive to get them here, it’s a small amount of money that will sometimes make the difference to relocate here, but what it means is jobs, because there will be Queensland jobs,” Palaszczuk said.
The government has reaffirmed its $10 million funding commitment to the Cairns Innovation Centre at James Cook University, to encourage a focus on entrepreneurship, innovation and commercialisation, while $6 million will be directed to Regional Innovation Hubs.