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Australia Announces National Quantum Strategy

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Insider Brief

  • Australia’s National Quantum Strategy sets a long-term vision for Australia to take advantage of the opportunities in quantum.
  • The strategy will serve to guide collaboration between research pioneers, industry partners, start-ups and the government.
  • Priorities include investing in research and development and commercialisation, securing infrastructure and materials, growing a skilled workforce, supporting national interests and promoting a trusted, ethical, inclusive ecosystem.

The Australian Government released the country’s first National Quantum Strategy that sets a long-term vision for Australia to take advantage of the opportunities in quantum, according to a statement from the Department of Industry, Science and Resorces.

According to a statement, Australia has been at the forefront of quantum science and technology for more than 2 decades. We have world-class research institutions, talented scientists and engineers and a vibrant start-up ecosystem. The strategy outlines how we will seize our quantum future and remain a global leader.

The strategy will serve to guide collaboration between research pioneers, industry partners, start-ups and the government, Ed Husic, Minister for Industry and Science said in a statement. The collaborations could create a new era of practical quantum tech, he added.

“In time, quantum computing will unleash incredible computing power that can phenomenally outperform traditional computing,” said Husic. “By pairing a National Quantum Strategy with the National Reconstruction Fund we’re aiming to turn Australia into a global technology leader, building stronger industry and creating jobs for the future.”

The strategy identifies five priority areas: investing in research and development and commercialisation, securing infrastructure and materials, growing a skilled workforce, supporting national interests and promoting a trusted, ethical, inclusive ecosystem.

Considering some use case priorities, the statement reports that quantum technologies could help solve some of the biggest challenges:

  • Cutting the time and cost of developing new medicines
  • Helping the transition to net zero with more efficient battery storage
  • Safeguarding cyber infrastructure

The payoff is significant. According to the statement, quantum industries could create 19,400 direct jobs, with $5.9 billion of revenue by 2045.

“I can’t emphasise this enough, quantum technologies will be truly transformative,” said Husic. “We are already seeing how quantum sensing equipment is making a huge difference for industry.”

Australia’s plan is based on extensive consultation across industry, researchers and the community led by Australia’s Chief Scientist Dr Cathy Foley and with guidance from the National Quantum Advisory Committee.

According to Foley, the plan recognizes Australia’s pioneering role in quantum research as a strength.

“Australia has had its finger on the quantum pulse since Professors RQ Twiss and AG Little published the first paper on time-correlated photons in 1959,” Foley writes in her statement. “Since then, and especially in the past 25 years, we’ve made significant research investment, resulting in an emerging Australian quantum industry that is destined to have a significant impact on all of our lives.”

She adds that it will be critical to connect that research with the nation’s entrepreneurial spirit.

“Australia is well positioned to capitalise on the amazing research that is making its way out of the lab,” Foley writes. “Our entrepreneurial spirit is generating new start-ups and attracting major companies. This is our chance to grow a thriving deep-tech industry, built out of coordinated, long-term government investment and a critical mass of world-class Australian-trained quantum specialists. We are in the top handful of countries embarking on a quantum ambition. But we have to act now, as there is intense global attention on the promise of quantum.”

The Quantum National Strategy is available here.

If you found this article to be informative, make sure to explore more of the current quantum news here.

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Matt Swayne

With a several-decades long background in journalism and communications, Matt Swayne has worked as a science communicator for an R1 university for more than 12 years, specializing in translating high tech and deep tech for the general audience. He has served as a writer, editor and analyst at The Quantum Insider since its inception. In addition to his service as a science communicator, Matt also develops courses to improve the media and communications skills of scientists and has taught courses. [email protected]

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