What is the Defence Industry Grants Program?

The Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry Grants Program is a grant opportunity to help develop defence sector skills and human resources practices and training plans.



The Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry Grants provide businesses servicing the defence sector with upskilling and training opportunities to build skills capacity and capability to meet current or future Defence needs.

The Defence Industry Grants Program will run over three years from 2020-21 to 2022-23. The program is a key initiative of the Defence Industry Skilling and STEM Strategy launched in February 2019.



The Defence Industry Grants Program aims to:

  • reduce barriers faced by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the defence sector when upskilling or retraining staff
  • develop skills within SMEs in the defence sector
  • support SMEs in the defence sector to establish human resources practices and training plans that will build lifelong learning activities into their business



The Australian Government has announced a total of approximately $39 million over three years from 2020-21 to 2022-23 for the program. Approximately $10 million of the total funding has been allocated to provide support for Naval shipbuilding related skills training across two years from 2020-21 to 2021-22.

The grant amount will be up to 100 per cent of eligible project expenditure.

  • The minimum grant amount is $5,000
  • The maximum grant amount is $500,000.

You may apply for multiple grants or group multiple eligible activities into one application; however, the funding is capped at $500,000 per grantee in a three-year period from 2020-21 to 2022-23.


Eligible Projects

To be eligible your project must:

  • be aimed at increasing Defence related skills capacity or capability within your organisation or within a group of defence industry businesses represented by an industry association, that is required to meet current or future Defence capability needs; and
  • be delivered by a registered training organisation (RTO), a tertiary education provider (University or TAFE), an accredited training provider, a professional or industry association, an appropriately qualified employee in your business or an original equipment manufacturer (OEM)


Eligible Applicants

To be eligible you must:

  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • be non-income tax exempt (unless you are a defence industry association training your own staff or facilitating training to businesses you are representing).

and be one of the following entities:

  • an entity, incorporated in Australia
  • an incorporated trustee on behalf of a trust.

The program can only accept applications from:

  • SMEs with less than 200 employees that currently service, or intend to service, the defence industry sector and meet one of the following requirement
    • have a current Defence contract
    • be currently tendering or preparing to tender for a Defence contract
    • be a current subcontractor to a Defence prime or contracted through the Prime’s supply chain to deliver on Defence projects.
  • Defence industry associations for training their own staff or for facilitating training to businesses they are representing.



Applications open on an ongoing basis.


More Information