State Government funding creates PPE manufacturing boom in NSW

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Ten NSW manufacturers are producing personal protective equipment (PPE) for the domestic and international markets thanks to funding support from the NSW Government.

The ten companies had received grants of up to $500,000 each when COVID-19 first hit last year and are now producing face masks, gloves, disinfectant and medical-grade handwash and soap.

The funding allowed Envirus – a joint venture between Newcastle-based industrial PPE manufacturer Maddison Safety and wetsuit manufacturer Sharkskin International – to purchase additional machinery and equipment to increase its capacity to retool and produce P2 face masks.

Tim Maddison, Managing Director, Maddison Safety and Shane Holiday, Managing Director, Sharkskin International said that this is a great initiative for Australian manufacturing.

“The grant has supplemented the investment we made during the height of COVID in 2020, helping us to purchase new machinery and secure more staff and training to keep up with demand,” Mr Maddison said.

“While COVID-19 has impacted domestic business in our traditional markets Sharkskin International’s Domestic Manufacturing of PPE grant will help the business to scale-up production and further pursue international markets,” added Mr Holiday.

Deputy Premier John Barilaro said the grants helped reduce Australia’s dependence on PPE imports while shoring up local manufacturing and creating new jobs.

“The demand for PPE remains high both here and internationally and the NSW Government is pleased to support our local businesses to pivot from their traditional practices and produce the materials desperately needed for export,” the Minister said.

“NSW’s management of COVID-19 has provided an opportunity for innovative home-grown businesses to not only support Australian citizens with PPE, but to export these critical products to our international neighbours.

“These grants are supporting companies across NSW, including five regional businesses, to create new jobs, boost local economies and strengthen our manufacturing export capability in the longer-term.”

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