Australian manufacturers will reap the benefits of a jointly-funded, multi-million dollar project aimed at improving international competitiveness in a wide range of industries.
Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced the 40-million-U.S dollar contribution from the government on Wednesday, which complements an investment of more than 160 million U.S dollars from existing manufacturers.
The project, known as the Manufacturing Transition Program, would give Australian businesses the "confidence to back themselves and carve their place in a changing global market," the prime minister said.
Abbott said a range of companies would receive the funding, which would serve to upgrade workplace technology and offer more jobs to Australians.
"Nineteen businesses will receive between 1-million and 5- million Australian dollars to improve their competitiveness by investing in new capital equipment and plant improvements," he said in a statement on Wednesday.
"The program seeks to encourage Australian manufacturers to invest in more sophisticated and knowledge-intensive manufacturing. This will create high value jobs in areas where the greatest economic opportunities exist."
Abbott said the investment would create returns for everyday Australians by allowing Australian manufacturers to offer their services more competitively than other international businesses, which would in turn benefit the Australian economy.
"This program complements other Commonwealth government initiatives, such as the abolition of the carbon and mining taxes, to provide the right policy settings for investment and to improve the competitiveness of Australian manufacturing," he said.
Abbott added that businesses had to submit convincing arguments as to why they should get the Commonwealth-assisted grant.
He said a rigorous selection process determined the best candidates for the funding.
"Successful projects were awarded through a competitive, merit based process, and based on advice from an expert technical committee."