blog If you’ve been paying attention over the past several weeks, you may have realised that Australia’s technology sector hasn’t been the hugest fan of the Federal Budget. Startups and venture capitalists criticised the Budget’s cuts to funding and management resources, the game development sector criticised cuts to gaming investment, researchers are not happy about NICTA’s funding cut and pretty much everyone is unhappy about the Coalition’s new approach to the National Broadband Network. The poor industry mood is summed up well by Atlassian founders Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar in a video interview with Channel Nine’s Financial Review Sunday Program. We recommend you click here for the full video clocking in at six and a half minutes, and there’s also a lengthy article on the subject at the Financial Review itself. A couple of choice quotes:
“The biggest problem with government is it doesn’t understand technology,” Mr Cannon-Brookes told the program. “Technology is going to be the major driver of change over the next 25 years. It has been over the last 25. Now, if we’re not participating as a country in creating that technology, we’re going to be purely a consumer of overseas technology. We’re not going to have the wealth created here and I don’t think the government understands that in the way that they behave.”
I have to say, it’s hard to disagree with the Atlassian gurus on this one. Comprehensively, if there was a measure which was aimed at assisting Australia’s ICT sector (particularly fast-growing startups), it appears as though the new Coalition Government was determined to cut it. Regular Delimiter readers will be aware that I didn’t find some of the existing programs very effective, but there is, at the least, no doubt that the Coalition certainly didn’t replace them with anything either.
Tony Abbott, Joe Hockey and company appear to believe that the sector — responsible for huge ecoomic outcomes in other countries — has little relevance to the land Down Under. Strange stuff. Why wouldn’t you want to have a bevy of high-powered tech firms like Atlassian calling Australia home?
Image credit: Atlassian