Daily US Times: US tech giant Google has announced that it will invest A$1bn ($740m) in Australia over the next five years.
It is Google’s largest investment – named the Digital Future Initiative – in the country to date.
The tech giant says the money will be used to increase its cloud computing capacity, build a research hub and fund partnerships with local organisations.
The move is expected to directly create 6,000 jobs and support 28,000 overall.
Google boss Sundar Pichai said at the initiative’s launch in Sydney: “Australia can help lead the world’s next wave of innovation, harnessing technology to improve lives, create jobs, and make progress.”
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison also attended the event and welcomed the plan: “The decision by Google has major benefits for Australian businesses as we engage with the economic recovery before us.”
The investment will see Google partnering with local organisations, including Australia’s science agency the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO).
Joshua Kennedy-White of cyber investment company DivisionX Global called Google’s announcement a “huge win” for Australian technology:
He said: “It takes money to move an idea into innovation and the first money is the hardest to come by. If Google cut $250k cheques to promising start-ups, they could fund 4,000 new tech companies in Australia,” he said.
The investment marks another major boost for Sydney’s ambitions to become the ‘Silicon Valley of the Southern Hemisphere’.
Construction of Tech Central, a hub multi-billion dollar hub in central Sydney, is due to start next year and is expected to continue until 2026.
However, big tech firms have come under fire in Australia in recent months for not paying local news publishers for content carried on their platforms. They have also been accused of helping the spread of disinformation.
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