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Innovation and Investment funds open for business

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SENATOR THE HON KIM CARR Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research

THE HON DAVID HODGETT MP Victorian Minister for Manufacturing

MR BOB GRAZIANO President & CEO, Ford Australia


28 July 2013


Businesses can apply from today for $49 million in funding to invest in Melbourne’s North and Geelong, creating opportunities for economic growth and sustainable new jobs for workers in these regions, thanks to contributions from the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments and Ford Australia.

The Melbourne’s North Innovation and Investment Fund (MNIIF) and the Geelong Region Innovation and Investment Fund (GRIIF) are open to receive applications for grant funding, to be awarded on a competitive, merit-based process from today.

The funds are being provided by the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments as well as Ford Australia.

Innovation Minister Senator Kim Carr said the funds would support innovative projects and create new and sustainable jobs that would help the regions adjust to, and prosper beyond the closure of Ford Australia’s vehicle and engine manufacturing operations in October 2016.

“These funds provide a real opportunity for the Melbourne North region and the Geelong region to see new jobs created for people living in those areas,” Senator Carr said.

“Funding for projects will help companies take the steps to diversify what they do, innovate and invest in these regions, create new work and opportunities and open up new markets.”

Victorian Minister for Manufacturing David Hodgett said the funds demonstrate the commitment of both governments and Ford to support the regions and significantly boost their economic capacity.

”The Victorian Government will continue to support local manufacturers as they innovate and diversify, and this funding will provide a real boost to the communities in Geelong and Melbourne’s north.

“These two funds will assist manufacturers in these regions to grow and expand and will help enable them to improve their competitiveness in local and global markets,” Mr Hodgett said.

Ford Australia President & CEO Bob Graziano said that Ford fully supports the establishment of the two funds and looks forward to the new developments that will be possible in the regions of Geelong and Melbourne’s North.

Grants will be available for applications through funding rounds and will be assessed on a competitive basis. The first round opens on Sunday 28 July 2013 and closes on 26 September 2013.

Information seminars are scheduled to take place in August 2013. Further information is available from the AusIndustry hotline on 13 28 46, the AusIndustry website at or by contacting

Funds committed MNIIF GRIIF

Australian Government $15 million $15 million

Victorian Government $4.5 million $4.5 million

Ford Australia $5 million $5 million

Total: $24.5 million $24.5 million

Media contact: Fiona Bastian (Minister Carr’s office) 0427 092 100 Steve Mann (Minister Hodgett’s office) 0428 398 039 Neil McDonald (Ford Australia) 03 8301 2769