We assess the new Government funding program.
With domestic vehicle manufacturing to cease by 2017, the Victorian Government has launched a funding program “Towards Future Industries: Victoria’s Automotive Transition Plan”, to assist businesses, employees and communities to capitalise on opportunities and provide support to those affected.
This program will provide $46.5 million worth of funding towards the following programs and initiatives:
Automotive Supply Chain Transition Program ($5 million)
Local Industry Fund for Transition Program to support communities affected by the end to manufacturing by Ford, Holden and Toyota ($33 million)
Training and job search support in Melbourne's South-East ($8.4 million)
Grants to businesses who employ retrenched automotive workers
This program is to support Victorian automotive supply chain companies who will be affected by the closure of passenger vehicle manufacturing in Victoria.
Eligible supply chain companies are those that derive at least 20% of their revenue from supplying new vehicle manufacturing by the three local vehicle manufacturers (Ford, Holden and Toyota) and their supply chain. The support for each eligible supply chain company will be capped at $65,000 with the level of funding dependent on the support required.
The funding will facilitate companies to develop a business transition plan, with the assistance of a Business Specialist, which will identify future opportunities and assistance required to implement business transition activities.
The Government has developed a funding program to support the areas most impacted by the closure of the major vehicle manufacturers, being Melbourne’s north, west, south-east and the Geelong region.
The programs main aim is to create sustainable jobs and contribute to the economic development in the communities most affected. The funds will contribute to supporting capital investment by local firms or business wishing to set-up or expand operations.
Government grants of up to 25% of the eligible job creating project expenditure will be made, up to a maximum grant of $2 million. The minimum grant amount is $50,000.
Funding has been allocated as follows:
$10 million fund for Melbourne’s south-east
$5 million fund for Melbourne’s west
This funding is on top of the Government’s commitment to invest a further $10.6 million in Melbourne’s north and $7.5 million in the Geelong Region. This funding was previously supported through Melbourne’s north and Geelong Region Innovation and Investment Funds.
Over half of Victoria’s automotive workers are employed in Melbourne’s south-east, which is why the Government is investing additional funds to strengthen skill sets, and provide training and job search support to this area.
New skills and job centres have been established across the Victorian TAFE network which will become the hub for workers, job seekers and businesses to access Government support. These centers will provide access to career advice, assistance with identification of employment opportunities, skills assessments and the development of training plans.
The Government has made changes to the ‘Back to Work’ scheme whereby businesses who hire a retrenched automotive full time worker will receive a one-off payment of $7,000, and up to $4,000 for providing accredited training.
If you believe you are eligible for assistance, or if you would like further information, please contact Brett Fowler, Partner at ShineWing Australia.