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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 10 Hansard (16 September) . .

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(e) the ACT Government has recently led business delegations to Singapore and China, and will lead one to the United States of America and Japan in October, to expand markets for local business operators; and

(2) calls on the ACT Government to continue to:

(a) ensure Canberra's business environment remains competitive and attractive for local, interstate and international businesses by implementing the Confident and Business Ready strategy; and

(b) work with employers, local businesses, unions and the community to continue to create and support local jobs.

I am proud of the embrace of innovation and entrepreneurship by this government, our business community, and our educational institutions and by a huge range of individual Canberrans who epitomise being confident and business ready.

We often talk of the need to further diversify our economy without taking time to appreciate how much we have achieved. There is much greater diversity now in the opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs and the fruits can be seen in, say, the range of businesses emerging across the city from funky shops and eateries, to boutique technology start-ups, to specialist service industries serving global markets from a base here in Canberra. The ACT government's new business development strategy, "Confident & business ready: building on our strengths" continues to support diversifying the Canberra economy and creating more jobs.

We have seen off the Abbott government and are emerging confidently from the cuts to commonwealth jobs and services in Canberra that the federal Liberals wore as a badge of pride. We have retained our AAA stable credit rating and our confidence is boosted by the confidence major companies like IKEA and Qantas have shown in the great future of our city. This is a clever city, a clever capital, well placed to make our own luck now and we have a supremely livable city where people want to stay to pursue their dreams.

As noted in my motion, the commonwealth government's industry department's Office of the Chief Economist's recent report Australian geography of innovation and entrepreneurship found that, on a population adjusted basis, the ACT is the highest performing—the highest performing, Madam Speaker—of all Australia's states and territories on both innovation and entrepreneurship.

The report also finds that the ACT has the highest rate of research and development expenditure on a population basis, the highest number of patent applications on a population basis, the highest number of trademark applications on a population basis, the highest number of business entries on a population basis and the second highest business survival rate. Importantly, these findings are not skewed by the presence of our research institutions because the data is based on the R&D tax incentive—a program for business innovation, which does not include the institutions.

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