The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) is encouraging all political parties in the Federal Election to adopt reforms to six policy, legislative and incentive areas to ensure the ongoing contribution of ICT to Australia’s digital economy.
AIIA chief executive officer (CEO), Suzanne Campbell, said the next Government must address these issues in order to accelerate the value of Australia’s digital economy, and in return support sustained economic growth and global competitiveness.
Campbell outlined the six area at the launch of AIIA’s SmartICT: Prosperity for all Australians’ Election Platform in Sydney, and they include:
- Driving take up and use of our national broadband infrastructure, with a particular focus on Government use of SmartICT.
- Stimulating growth and innovation by ICT start-ups and small businesses.
- Motivating small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to improve their productivity by ‘getting’ online and digitally capable.
- Addressing the ICT skills shortage.
- Growing our ICT capability through improved research and development (R&D) capability and capacity, and forging better links between research and industry.
- Acknowledging the ‘value’ of the digital economy by tracking and measuring its performance.
“The ICT industry contributes as much to Australia’s economy as the mining sector, and only marginally less than the manufacturing, and finance and insurance sectors,” Campbell said.
She also said despite the roll-out and impact of a ubiquitous high-speed broadband network, Australia’s performance in other areas of ICT is not optimised in ways that can transform the economy and society.
“If our political parties are truly focused on sustained, long-term growth and national prosperity, then we call on them to support AIIA’s SmartICT Election Platform,” she added.