With an election now just 2 months away, Treasurer Scott Morrison has handed down his first budget. For the first time we've partnered with InnovationAus to bring you the Budget Insider 2016 Whitepaper.

Respected journalists Beverley Head, Stuart Kennedy, Graeme Philipson and James Riley have worked tirelessly throughout the Budget lockup and overnight to deliver this document, and we are pleased to be able to offer it to you. You can access the Budget Insider 2016 by clicking here.

Speaking to Information Age last night, ACS President Anthony Wong welcomed measures in the budget confirming support for the National Innovation and Science Agenda.

“The announcement of the NISA in December was a pivotal moment for Australia’s digital future, and seeing the funding confirmed in tonight’s budget delivers certainty that these initiatives will help build a platform for Australia’s future” Mr Wong said.

“We are also pleased to see a sensible approach to fintech regulation mentioned in the budget. The idea of having a regulatory sandbox will help encourage innovation and experimentation from new businesses, and recognises that disruption is driving the fintech space.” Mr Wong continued.

“The confirmation of funding for Cybersecurity, following on from the Prime Minister’s recent announcement, will help fill a critical skills gap in this sector. Cybersecurity is no longer something that can be taken lightly, and we are pleased to see the Government recognising its importance.”

Mr Wong also outlined the importance of developing digital skills for Australia’s existing workforce.

“There is an enormous opportunity for the Government to harness the potential of the existing workforce to become the digital workforce of the future. Our research (Australia’s Digital Pulse 2016) indicates that today’s employers are increasingly requiring skills in technology, and we urge the Government to collaborate with organisations such as the ACS, employers, industry and the academic sector to realise this opportunity”