Lower house passes $15B NRF Corporation Bill to boost Australian manufacturing

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The National Reconstruction Fund (NRF) Corporation Bill passed the House of Representatives on Thursday, bringing Australia one step closer to delivering one of the largest peacetime investments in the manufacturing industry. 

The NRF is slated to invest $15 billion across a wide array of priority areas of the economy, including renewables and low-emissions technologies, medical science, transport, value-adding agriculture, forestry and fisheries, defence capability, and enabling technologies. 

The legislation is intended to create secure, high-paying jobs for workers across Australia, including its regions, outer suburbs, and remote communities. 

It also seeks to help address the inflation challenge in the economy by reducing Australia’s dependence on broken supply chains. 

Minister for Industry and Science Ed Husic said the NRF will rebuild Australia’s industrial capability and support long-term sustainable economic growth. 

“The National Reconstruction Fund is a nation-building, transformational investment to help deliver a better future,” Husic said. “I look forward to working constructively across the Senate to deliver the National Reconstruction Fund for Australians.”

The NRF will be administered by an independent board making independent investment decisions, according to a media release issued by the Department of Industry, Science and Resources. 

“Right now we have a unique opportunity to diversify and transform our economy and we don’t want to miss it,” said Katy Gallagher, Australia’s minister for finance.