The State Government has welcomed the news that National Energy Resources Australia (NERA) will be based at Technology Park Bentley with the Western Australian Energy Research Alliance (WA:ERA).
Commerce Minister Michael Mischin said the decision was recognition of WA as an innovation and technology hub for the oil and gas sector, with substantial research and innovation development capability that would be expanded through the NERA initiative.
"The organisation will help identify the needs of the industry across the nation, in driving innovation and improving productivity," Mr Mischin said.
"The State is going to expand its capacity as a regional innovation and technology hub and centre of excellence for the oil and gas sector, broadening our economic base and creating opportunities for local businesses.
"We have consistently been a leader in oil and gas innovation and technology development. According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in the five years to 2013-14, the oil and gas industry invested more than $3.7 million into research and development in WA.
"The State Government has committed a financial support package of $875,000 over four years through WA:ERA to support NERA activities, particularly to support small and medium-sized business engagement, to bridge the link between industry and academia, and for industry to access international markets."
The Minister said NERA was one of five Industry Growth Centres established by the Australian Government in a $225 million investment in the nation's growth industries, which had been identified as:
- food and agribusiness
- mining equipment, technology and services
- medical technologies and pharmaceuticals
- advanced manufacturing
- oil, gas and energy resources.
The Department of Commerce estimates that NERA will see at least $22m in funding support directed to WA-based activities, with a further $200m in research funding potentially being directed to WA to undertake industry identified research projects
Along with WA:ERA, other founding members of NERA include Quadrant Energy, Clough and GE Oil and Gas
WA:ERA members include CSIRO, The University of Western Australia and Curtin University which work with industry research partners Chevron Australia, Woodside and Shell
Minister's office - 6552 5600