Hon. Ed Husic MP

Hon. Ed Husic MP

Federal Minister for Industry and Science


The Hon Ed Husic MP is the Federal Minister for Industry and Science and has been the Member for Chifley since 2010. Rebuilding Australia’s manufacturing capacity and delivering secure, rewarding and well-paid jobs to Australians is of the highest priority for Mr Husic. Mr Husic has a strong and ongoing interest in the Australian tech and digital sector, and has been vocal about the need for the country to think ahead about the impact of technology on jobs and communities – to help industry prepare and capitalise on future opportunities. Before entering Federal Parliament Mr Husic worked in roles spanning the private and public sectors, including as National President of the Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union and at Integral Energy (now Endeavour Energy).


At the Mindfields Automation Summit (MAS) 2023, Paul Smith, Technology Editor at AFR, engaged in a fireside chat with Hon. Ed Husic MP, Federal Minister for Industry & Science. Below are the key takeaways from the session.

  • Generative AI has evolved rapidly, surprising many with its capabilities. Deep fakes, music composition, and text generation are becoming common.
  • AI investment plans and global competition shape the AI sector. VC funding has seen fluctuations, impacting the ability to retain local talent.
  • The National Reconstruction Fund, with $15 billion set aside by the government, will support investments in priority areas like resources, agriculture, energy, medical sciences, transport, defense, and critical technologies. It aims to co-invest with superannuation, VC, and private equity to boost onshore manufacturing and industry capabilities.
  • To foster AI adoption in the public sector, we need to focus on trust, visibility, and adoption. Companies willing to contribute to education and skills development in AI can play a significant role in building knowledge within government.
  • Addressing concerns about AI regulation and its impact on businesses requires finding the right balance between user consent, regulation, and industry needs, with a focus on value and reducing complexity for SMEs.