It's a shame because a Defence mini-economic stimulus would have a direct impact on the manufacturing sector and the Australian manufacturing sector has been one of the hardest hit by the GFC and it hasn't received as much support from the Federal Government as other sectors (i.e Construction) .
It would be nice to see a little more of the stimulus going into programs to encourage greater private spending on R&D and High Tech Manufacturing.
There are a number of future challenges for the Australian manufacturing sector. The most pressing is the current global financial crisis. During an economic downturn, manufacturers face the challenge to contain costs and often the response is to reduce workforce numbers, cut R&D spending and outsource non-core operations. While this may help contain operational costs now, when the next growth cycle starts, it is not always possible to ramp up the workforce quickly, particularly where skilled labour is involved (.e Defence & technology sectors).
Source: Engineers Australia
N.B. France isn't the only one to inject money into defence as part of their stimulus a number of other developed & developing economies have done so, a notably example in our region is Malaysia h**p://www.prlog.org/10292777-portion-of-malaysias-myr7bn-economic-stimulus-package-earmarked-for-defence-ministry.html
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