SYDNEY: Australia’s growing quantum technology could provide 16,000 new jobs and create annual revenue of more than $4 billion by 2040, according to a new CSIRO report, launched at the weekend.
Titled Growing Australia’s Quantum Technology Industry, the report says Down Under development of quantum technology could – among other things – enhance national security; increase productive mineral exploration; and improve secure communications.
Explains CSIRO chief exec Larry Marshall: “As Australia recovers from the impacts of Covid-19, we will need to create new industries to give Australia unfair advantage globally to produce unique high margin products that support higher wages. Science and technology are the key to economic prosperity in a world driven by disruption.”
CSIRO chief scientist Cathy Foley goes further, rating quantum computing as the single most promising long-term opportunity for Australia.
“Quantum computing has the potential to contribute more than $2.5 billion to the economy each year, while spurring breakthroughs in drug development, more efficient industrial processes, and accelerated machine learning systems,” Foley says.
Uni of Queensland professor Andrew White adds: “Australia’s world-leading research in quantum technology is driving us towards solutions we could only imagine a few years ago, across a number of sectors. For example, quantum sensors could give us early disease detection and quantum-enhanced communications could offer stronger security for sensitive data transmissions.”
According to the CSIRO report, the $4 billion revenue figure for quantum computing Down Under by 2040 includes revenue of $2.5 billion and 10,000 jobs, along with 3000 jobs and $900,000 revenue for sensing and measurement tasks, and $800,000 and another 3000 jobs in communications.
Major industries said to be in line to benefit from quantum tech include healthcare and medicine, defence, natural resources – including weather modelling, discovery of ore deposits and financial services.