Page 1500 - Week 05 - Wednesday, 4 May 2016

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MR HINDER: Minister, have programs similar to the small business innovation partnerships program been successful elsewhere?

DR BOURKE: The small business innovation partnerships program builds on the lessons and successes of the digital Canberra challenge, and similar programs have been implemented in Australia and internationally. The US was the first country to introduce a small business innovation research program, in 1982, and today there are 11 federal agencies committing 2.8 per cent of their entire research and development budget to this program. $US25 billion has been spent under the US small business innovation research program over the last decade, with an average of 7,000 projects funded each year. The success of the program in the US has inspired similar initiatives in other OECD countries, notably Japan, the UK and the Netherlands. In Australia the federal, Victorian, South Australian and Queensland governments have implemented similar initiatives.

The ACT small business innovation partnerships program is resourced through directorates’ existing purchasing budgets. We want to instil a cultural change within government that opens up the procurement process, making it easier for our world-class businesses to engage with ACT government. The program aims to become business as usual—just another procurement channel government can use to achieve new, cost-effective and innovative solutions to meet its needs.

These programs have a double aim—to stimulate industry innovation and economic growth while at the same time providing government agencies with new, cost-effective technical and scientific solutions to meet their needs.

Mr Barr: I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Supplementary answers to questions without notice

Canberra Hospital—oxygen supply

MR CORBELL: Yesterday in question time Mr Hanson asked me whether I could check my records and come back to this place to confirm that oxygen being in short supply has not led to patients being either not admitted or turned away. I can advise Mr Hanson and the Assembly as follows, Madam Speaker: all oxygen needs of patients were met and fully catered for during recent planned works being undertaken as part of the emergency department expansion project. I am advised that no patients were turned away as a result of a lack of oxygen.

The building works did require an interruption to all medical gases and, as a result, a strategy was put in place to ensure backup supplies were available in the hospital, including the use of large portable oxygen cylinders. These specialised works were planned in advance, were well implemented and were supported by technical experts in the field.

Planning—Molonglo Valley

MR GENTLEMAN: Yesterday I received a question regarding the new shopping centre for the Molonglo district, specifically in Coombs. I can advise that the

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