Growing the economy

Modernising our economy and maximising our strengths

Becoming a renewable energy superpower

This Budget invests a further $4 billion in Australia's plan to become a renewable energy superpower.

It positions Australia to be a world leading hydrogen producer by investing $2 billion in Hydrogen Headstart, a new program to support hydrogen production.

It boosts industry‑driven innovation by establishing the Powering Australia Industry Growth Centre.

It takes the first steps to unlock $10 billion in new investment in firmed renewable generation and storage by funding the Capacity Investment Scheme's initial auctions.

These commitments bring the Government's total investment to becoming a renewable energy superpower to more than $40 billion.

Powering Australia with cheaper, cleaner, more reliable energy

Boosting renewable energy generation

This Budget accelerates investment in renewable energy through the Capacity Investment Scheme, which will unlock over $10 billion of investment in our grid.

The Government is also providing $46.5 million to the Australian Energy Regulator to regulate our energy markets and protect consumers through the transformation.

This Budget leverages $12 billion of the Government’s $20 billion investment in Rewiring the Nation to transformational transmission projects, including:

  • $1 billion in Tasmania’s Battery of the Nation projects
  • $1.5 billion towards Renewable Energy Zones and offshore wind in Victoria
  • $4.7 billion to unlock critical transmission in New South Wales.

Electrifying our economy

The Small Business Energy Incentive will help businesses save on their power bills through smarter energy use. This is in addition to the $1.3 billion investment in the Household Energy Upgrades Fund.

Australia's first National Electric Vehicle Strategy will also ensure consumers have a better choice of electric vehicles and encourage greater use of cleaner, cheaper‑to‑run vehicles.

As part of the strategy, the Government is providing $7.4 million to support the introduction of a Fuel Efficiency Standard.

Promoting energy efficient commercial buildings

From 1 July 2025, the Government will extend the clean building managed investment trust withholding tax concession to eligible data centres and warehouses where construction commenced after Budget night. Buildings will also need to satisfy higher energy efficiency standards to qualify for the concession.

Investing in reliability

The Government is also developing a Future Gas Strategy, which will support Australia's energy system to reach 82 per cent renewables by 2030 and become cleaner, cheaper and more reliable, while maintaining our international reputation as a trusted energy supplier to our longstanding trading partners.

Powering net zero industries and jobs

Building critical minerals industries

The Government is investing $57.1 million to develop Critical Minerals International Partnerships to secure strategic and commercial partnerships.

This investment builds on the $2 billion Critical Minerals Facility and $1 billion targeted to value‑adding in resources, under the National Reconstruction Fund.

Hydrogen and new energy industries

The Government's $2 billion Hydrogen Headstart will accelerate large‑scale renewable hydrogen projects.

Hydrogen Headstart will bridge the commercial gap for early‑stage projects, and position Australia to be a world leading hydrogen producer and exporter.

The Government is providing $38.2 million to establish a Guarantee of Origin scheme to underpin markets for green energy, including hydrogen and other low emissions products.

Powering Australia Industry Growth Centre

The Government is providing $14.8 million to establish the Powering Australia Industry Growth Centre, which will support Australian businesses looking to manufacture, commercialise and adopt renewable technologies.

This is in addition to the up to $3 billion allocated to investment in low emissions technologies including green metals under the National Reconstruction Fund.

Skills for the clean energy economy

The Government has commissioned Jobs and Skills Australia to undertake a Clean Energy Capacity Study to evaluate workforce needs and enable Australia to strategically plan for the skills needed for the transformation to a clean energy economy.

Sustainable finance

The Government is implementing corporate climate disclosure requirements and developing a comprehensive Sustainable Finance Strategy.

Key new commitments include:

  • establishing an Australian Government green bond program
  • co‑funding development of a sustainable finance taxonomy with industry
  • resourcing ASIC to target greenwashing in financial markets.

Establishing the Net Zero Authority

The Authority will work across all levels of government and with workers, regional communities and First Nations people.

It will facilitate economic development and diversification and help smooth the changes as Australia moves to a clean energy economy.

The Authority will ensure workers are supported as they transition to new opportunities and enable First Nations Australians to meaningfully participate.

Accelerating industrial decarbonisation

As part of the Powering the Regions Fund, the $400 million Industrial Transformation Stream will support the growth of new clean energy industries in regional areas, as well as innovative efforts to decarbonise existing industrial activities.

Securing critical inputs for the net zero transition

The $400 million Critical Inputs to Clean Energy Industries stream of the Powering the Regions Fund will provide grant funding to support the development of clean energy industries.

Funding allows these industries to maintain production while they work to reduce their emissions, and ensures Australia has secure access to critical inputs for the transition.

Transforming Safeguard Mechanism facilities

The $600 million Safeguard Transformation Stream of the Powering the Regions Fund will support trade‑exposed facilities covered by the Safeguard Mechanism to reduce their on‑site emissions and boost their global competitiveness.

A sustainable future

Better protecting our environment

In addition to establishing an independent agency, Environment Protection Australia, to enforce Commonwealth environment laws, Government will also establish Environment Information Australia to improve transparency and decision‑making.

The Government has made further allocations under its 5‑year, $1.1 billion commitment to the Natural Heritage Trust, to help protect our threatened species and habitats and restore urban rivers and catchments.

The Government has also provided $262.3 million for Commonwealth National Parks, such as Kakadu and Uluru‑Kata Tjuta, to protect their natural and cultural heritage value.

Backing our farmers

The Budget delivers on the Government's commitment to provide long‑term, sustainable funding to strengthen our biosecurity system.

It provides more than $1 billion of additional funding to help ensure Australia remains free from invasive pests and diseases that would devastate exports, regional jobs and the environment.

The Government’s biosecurity regime is underpinning our farmers’ record $75 billion of agricultural exports and helping them realise their goal of $100 billion of annual output by 2030.

Building disaster resilience and preparedness

In 2023‑24, the Government is providing $200 million through the Disaster Ready Fund to support projects like levee upgrades, seawalls and bushfire risk reduction projects.

Modernising our industrial base

Ensuring strategic industries have a future made in Australia

National Reconstruction Fund

The Government has committed $15 billion to the National Reconstruction Fund, one of the largest investments in manufacturing in Australia's history.

This will support our regions and help create secure, well‑paying jobs. This will build future prosperity, while making a vital contribution to our transition to net zero.

Through loans, guarantees and equity investments, the National Reconstruction Fund will partner with the private sector to invest in priority areas that leverage Australia’s natural and competitive strengths in renewables and low emissions technologies, medical science, transport, value‑add in agriculture, forestry, and fisheries, value‑add in resources, defence capability and enabling capabilities.

Industry Growth Program

The new $392.4 million Industry Growth Program will support Australian small to medium‑sized enterprises and startups to commercialise their ideas and grow their operations.

This recognises the important contribution small and medium‑sized enterprises make, and the role they play in transforming the Australian economy and creating new, high skill jobs.

Creative industries

The Government is investing $286 million to renew and revive Australia's arts, entertainment and cultural sector through its landmark National Cultural Policy Revive: a place for every story, a story for every place.

Revive will empower our talented artists and arts organisations to thrive and grow ‑ unlocking new opportunities, reaching new audiences and telling new stories in compelling new ways.

In addition, the Government is boosting incentives for the film industry that will support jobs and local businesses in the film and television industry.

Building up our defence industry

Strengthening sovereignty and security in our region

Investing in our national security and defence capabilities will also create opportunities for high‑skilled and high‑paid jobs, delivering new expertise in science, engineering and cyber security.

Implementing the Defence Strategic Review

The Defence Strategic Review sets the agenda for ambitious but necessary reform to the Australian Defence Force’s posture and structure. It will ensure the Australian Defence Force’s capability and structure are fit for purpose and delivers the greatest return on investment.

Building up our defence capability

The acquisition of conventionally‑armed, nuclear‑powered submarines represents the biggest single investment in Australia’s defence capability in our history.

It will support 20,000 jobs over the next 30 years in advanced manufacturing, broaden our industrial base and create more high-skilled, high‑paid jobs for more Australians.

The Government is establishing the Advanced Strategic Capabilities Accelerator to transform Australia’s defence innovation ecosystem to urgently deliver advanced technologies for Australia’s national security.

Supporting and skilling the Australian Defence Force

The Government is providing Australian Defence Force personnel with financial support that recognises their commitment and service to improve rates of recruitment and retention over time.

We will also extend funding for skills, training and education to support our people into the future.

Supporting small business

Easing immediate pressures and boosting resilience

Energy Price Relief Plan

The Government is helping small businesses manage high energy prices through its Energy Price Relief Plan, by intervening to limit Australia’s exposure to international energy price shocks and providing around 1 million small businesses with direct bill relief.

Small Business Energy Incentive

The Small Business Energy Incentive will provide $310 million in tax relief and support up to 3.8 million businesses make investments like electrifying their heating and cooling systems, installing batteries and upgrading to high‑efficiency electrical goods.

Businesses with annual turnover of less than $50 million will have access to a bonus 20 per cent tax deduction for eligible assets supporting electrification and more efficient use of energy, from 1 July 2023 until 30 June 2024. Up to $100,000 of total expenditure will be eligible for the incentive, with the maximum bonus tax deduction being $20,000 per business.

This is in addition to $62.6 million towards energy efficiency grants for small and medium enterprises in the October Budget.

Small business instant asset write‑off

The Government is making it easier for small businesses to invest and grow by providing $290 million in cash flow support through the $20,000 instant asset write‑off.

Improving small business cash flow

The Government is providing approximately 2.1 million eligible small businesses with cashflow relief by halving the increase in their quarterly tax instalments for GST and income tax in 2023‑24.

Instalments will only increase by 6 per cent instead of 12 per cent, which better reflects the economic conditions currently faced by the sector.

It strikes a balance between improving cashflow for small businesses and managing income tax and GST liabilities.

Cyber security

The Government is investing $23.4 million to help small businesses build their resilience to cyber security attacks by training in‑house cyber wardens.

This measure will help mitigate and reduce the harms associated with cyber‑attacks on small business.

The small business Cyber Wardens program will be delivered by the Council of Small Business Organisations Australia.

Industry Growth Program

With small businesses employing over 5 million people, the Government recognises their importance to Australia’s economy.

A new $392.4 million Industry Growth Program will help support small to medium‑sized businesses and startups develop new products and services to grow their operations.

Buy Australian Plan

The Buy Australian Plan is a comprehensive program that will improve our approach to Government procurement.

The Budget builds on the creation of the Future Made in Australia Office by providing $18.1 million to increase engagement with businesses, improve AusTender and procurement capability across the Australian Public Service.

Data and the digital economy

Investing in a more productive and safer digital future

The Government is investing more than $2 billion in new digital solutions for improved service delivery, modernising outdated legacy platforms and IT systems, and foundational work to ensure that critical future investment maximises value for the taxpayer.

Protecting Australians against scams and data breaches

To reduce the prevalence of scams, the Government is allocating $86.5 million to establish a National Anti‑Scam Centre.

This will boost the Australian Securities and Investments Commission’s work to disrupt investment scam websites, and establish Australia’s first SMS Sender ID Registry to prevent scammers imitating trusted brand names.

The Government is providing $44.3 million to the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner to take appropriate regulatory action, enhance its data and analytics capability, and support a standalone Privacy Commissioner.

Expanding Digital ID

The Government is investing $26.9 million in 2023‑24 to expand Digital ID – helping to increase efficiency and consumer protection, reduce fraud, and make it easier for people to access services online.

Consumer Data Right

The Government continues its investment in the Consumer Data Right with $88.8 million over 2 years to support the CDR in banking, energy, and the non‑bank lending sectors and deliver a cyber security uplift.

Growing critical technology industries

The Government has allocated $101.2 million over 5 years to support the development and uptake of technologies that are enabling capabilities across Australian industries. It will commence in quantum and artificial intelligence.

It will also extend the National AI Centre and its role supporting responsible AI usage and will create an Australian Centre for Quantum Growth to connect and amplify Australia's quantum ecosystem.

A better trained workforce

Investing in skills and training

A modern, responsive vocational training sector with TAFE at the heart

The Government is negotiating with the states and territories on a new 5‑year National Skills Agreement to commence from 1 January 2024.

The Government will also fund a further 300,000 TAFE and vocational education training places to become fee‑free.

The new Agreement presents an opportunity to jointly set strategic priorities for our VET system, boost productivity, support gender equality and close the gap for First Nations Australians.

Targeted support for apprentices

The Government is redesigning Australian Apprenticeship Support Services to improve apprenticeship career pathways and provide more support for completions.

A re‑designed program model will assess the needs of every apprentice to support their success, help remove barriers for women in male‑dominated trades and strengthen support for First Nations apprentices, apprentices with disability and those in remote areas.

Reinvigorating foundation skills programs

The Government is expanding access to foundation skills training and supporting community‑based and culturally safe pathways to training.

More Australians will be able to develop the language, literacy, numeracy and digital skills they need to participate successfully in work, education and the community.

Tackling gender inequality in the apprenticeship system

The Guarantee will set national targets for apprentices plus specific targets for women apprentices and trainees on major Government‑funded construction and ICT projects. These targets will aim to double women in apprenticeship and traineeship roles in construction projects, and triple trade apprenticeships roles by 2030.

A better targeted migration system

Ensuring Australia has the skills to support the economy

Developing a Migration Strategy

Our current migration system has developed through years of piecemeal change. It lacks direction, is complex, inflexible, and inefficient.

The Government is developing a Migration Strategy to ensure the system delivers for Australians and migrants.

Boosting skilled migration

The Government is ensuring the system delivers the skilled migrants we need, including by:

  • allocating around 70 per cent of places in the 2023‑24 permanent Migration Program to skilled migrants, bringing long‑term fiscal and economic benefits and addressing persistent skill shortages
  • providing an extra 2 years of post‑study work rights to Temporary Graduate visa holders with select degrees, to improve the pipeline of skilled labour in key sectors
  • increasing the Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold to $70,000 to ensure skilled migration settings are better targeted
  • exempting international students working in the aged care sector from the capped fortnightly work hour limit until 31 December 2023
  • providing additional training places for Pacific Australia Labour Mobility scheme workers in priority sectors for the Pacific and Timor‑Leste and where there are job shortages in Australia.

Improved skills recognition

The Government is re‑scoping 2 Skills Assessment Pilots to provide onshore migrants with fast‑tracked skills assessments, free employability assessments, and access to further training to improve their employment prospects.

In addition, the Mechanism for the Mutual Recognition of Qualifications will ensure students from India and Australia will have greater certainty that the qualifications they attain will be recognised by both countries.

Supporting teachers and students

Addressing shortages and improving education

Increased support for the teacher workforce

The Government is investing $9.3 million, on top of $328 million previously announced for the National Teacher Workforce Action Plan. These investments are designed to attract, train and retain people in the teaching profession.

Working towards a better and fairer school education system

The Government has established an expert panel to provide advice on future reforms to inform the next National School Reform Agreement.

Delivering outcomes for First Nations students

The Government is providing $40.4 million to improve school attendance, engagement and learning outcomes for students in Central Australian schools.

The Government is also investing $38.4 million to pilot community‑led and culturally appropriate distance learning models in remote locations.

A further $21.6 million will extend the Indigenous Boarding Providers grants program for one year.

A long‑term plan for the higher education system

The Australian Universities Accord is an extensive review of the higher education system which will provide recommendations and performance targets to improve the quality, accessibility, affordability and sustainability of higher education.

The Accord will provide an interim report by June 2023, with a final report to be delivered by December 2023.

Additional Commonwealth supported places

The Government is delivering the second tranche of its commitment for 20,000 additional university places in 2023 and 2024.

Investing in infrastructure

Nationally significant projects to enhance economic growth

An independent strategic review will ensure the Government’s $120 billion pipeline over 10 years is fit for purpose and the Government's investment is focused on projects which improve long term productivity, supply chains and economic growth in our cities and regions.

The Government will work with states, territories and local governments to prioritise the delivery of projects currently under construction and election commitments.

Further investments will be made to improve productivity, safety and resilience. This will include $200 million to develop robust business cases for strategically significant projects.

Better cities, more liveable suburbs

The $159.7 million urban Precincts and Partnerships Program will help transform our cities and suburbs in partnership with state and local governments, community organisations and universities.

The $211.7 million Thriving Suburbs Program will provide investment in community and economic infrastructure that enhances liveability and prosperity in suburban communities.

The Government will invest $240 million in unlocking the potential of the Macquarie Point precinct in Hobart and $65 million for stadium redevelopment in Launceston.

Olympic and Paralympic Games

The Government is providing up to $3.4 billion over 10 years for investment in Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games venue infrastructure. This will support local jobs and create a lasting legacy in the growing south-east Queensland region.

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