Australia an IT beneficiary

Australia is among the world's heaviest users of IT but has very few local high-tech firms of its own and limited manufacturing capability, according to a Reserve Bank of Australia study.

The research claims because Australia is a user of technology rather than a producer, it has done well out of the new economy.

Authors of the report John Simon and Sharon Wardrop cite a recent OECD report which concluded the way to benefit from ICT is to focus on policies to foster its use, rather than its production and identified Australia as a country that had done exactly that.

"We arrive at the conclusion that Australia has experienced significant output growth related to computer use and has benefited from the technological advances in the sector through lower prices passed on to users," the study said.

"Thus, we conclude that there are substantial benefits to be gained from being a net user of computers as well as the more commonly mentioned benefits from being a producer."

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