Queensland is aiming for its share of the national space sector, with the state government accepting all the recommendations of a report on job creation opportunities from a local space industry.
Among them is an assessment of sites suitable for space infrastructure – a launch site.
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick said Queensland had all the right fundamental drivers for a booming space economy.
Releasing the government’s response to the State Development, Natural Resources and Agricultural Industry Development Committee’s report on job creation opportunities in the space industry, Minister Dick said the Australian government had committed to establishing a national space industry.
“My vision is a future where Queensland is getting our share of the jobs and growth that will create,” he said.
“Following last year’s launch of the Queensland Aerospace 10-Year Roadmap and Action Plan and this year’s Deloitte Access Economics report on Queensland’s space industry capabilities and potential economic growth, the committee’s recommendations show that what’s needed now is to build on our strengths and accelerate industry growth.”
The report made 15 recommendations. Minister Dick said the government had accepted all 15 in whole or in principle.
“This includes conducting an initial assessment of sites suitable for space infrastructure and working closely with the federal government on the market for Australian launch sites,” he said.
“The alignment between the committee’s recommendations and the work we’ve already started is more proof that our space economy is on track.
“According to the Deloitte report Sky is not the limit: Building Queensland’s space economy, Queensland is well-placed to capitalise on Australia’s emerging space industry, which in Queensland already contributes 2,000 full-time positions and generates $760 million per year to the state economy.
“Importantly, the report compiled for the first time a Queensland Space Economy Capability Directory, capturing more than 50 organisations operating in Queensland with capabilities valuable for the space industry.
“These included leading Earth observation, robotics and automation, data analytics and ground systems businesses.”
Minister Dick said the next step would be a fully-fledged strategy for growing Queensland’s space industry, building on the state’s competitive strengths identified in the Deloitte report.
As a space state, Queensland has been overshadowed by South Australia but it has a big advantage through its location closer to the equator. The further north rockets are launched, the more they can benefit from the Earth’s spin with higher speeds meaning less fuel is needed and greater payloads can be carried.
Retired RAAF Air Vice-Marshal Neil Hart, Queensland’s strategic defence adviser for aerospace and chair of the Queensland Space Industry Reference Group, said many existing Queensland government initiatives would help drive space industry growth.
“Key enablers for the space industry include advanced manufacturing capabilities, a healthy R&D and innovation start-up ecosystem and solid base of people with STEM skills,” he said.
“Initiatives like the Advanced Manufacturing, Aerospace, Defence Industries and Mining Equipment Technology and Services 10-Year Roadmaps and Action Plans, Schools of the Future STEM Strategy and the Advance Queensland suite of programs give this state a strong launchpad for space industries.”
Minister Dick said the Queensland government is working to transform the Queensland economy and create high paid, knowledge-based jobs for our state’s future, particularly in regional Queensland.
“From our work so far, we know that the future is bright for Queensland’s space industry. The opportunity is not only huge, it’s also real,” he said.
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