Cook Medical Australia has been named Exporter Of The Year in the category of Health and Biotechnology at this year’s Queensland Premiers Exporter of the Year Awards.
The award is in recognition of the company’s commitment to innovation and local manufacturing.
QLD Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk presented the awards, which have now been running for 26 years.
Ms Palaszczuk acknowledged the important contribution that Queensland’s exporting businesses make to the state’s economy, through the jobs they create and the increased prosperity they generate.
Barry Thomas, Managing Director of Cook Medical Australia and Director Cook Medical Asia and Vice President Cook Medical believes the award success reflects the company’s focus on innovation.
“Cook Medical Australia is fully committed to local manufacturing, and we are very pleased to have our Queensland operations applauded, Mr Thomas said. “We are dedicated to retaining a vibrant and diverse culture of innovation and manufacturing that will support a robust and sustainable export industry.
Need for structural change
“It’s our strong view though that more needs to be done to protect our innovation and manufacturing. The precarious state of Australia’s manufacturing industry is of particular concern – we’re struggling with comparatively high taxes, high labour and operating costs.”
Mr Thomas said to maximise Australia’s capability to innovate and to become a knowledge-based economy, there is a need for structural change within policy frameworks. The main aim is to attract business and commercialisation of our innovations back to Australia.
“Without this, the intellectual property, manufacturing and all the associated jobs will leave our shores, Mr Thomas said. “It’s the Australian future for companies like Cook Medical.”
Mr Thomas said the Government must act to save domestic manufacturing and industry.
“Our recommendation is to consider the implementation of a ‘patent box’ style tax incentive for Australia,” said Mr Thomas.
This would provide a reduction in the tax payable on profits derived from the commercialisation of qualifying IP in Australia (either via licensing or manufacturing and sale of products incorporating qualifying IP).
“Under the model, termed the Australian Innovation & Manufacturing (AIM) Incentive, qualifying IP profit would be taxed at the lower rate with the standard corporate tax rate to be applied to other income,” Mr Thomas said.
“This would ensure Australia benefits from investment in any R&D by encouraging companies to locate all activity associated with the development, manufacture and exploitation of that IP within Australia, which would support the full spectrum of industry sectors.”
Brisbane-based Cook Medical Australia is part of Cook Medical, the world's largest privately owned medical device company.
Established in 1979 the company employs over 500 people at its headquarters in Eight Mile Plains.