8 August 2017
Media Release - #2017068, 2017

Developing Australia’s Social Impact Investing market

Joint media release with
The Hon Christian Porter MP
Minister for Social Services

The Turnbull Government is today announcing a set of principles to guide its investment in programs that help our most vulnerable Australians.

The guidelines reaffirm the government’s $30 million commitment to develop a strong Social Impact Investing (SII) market in Australia, to deliver genuine outcomes for those at risk of homelessness and juvenile detention or those battling long-term welfare dependency.

Social impact investments are investments made with the intention of generating measurable social outcomes, while delivering a financial return to the investor.

This emerging investment approach brings together governments, service providers, investors, philanthropists and communities to tackle a range of critical issues that affect Australian families.

The principles state that where the Government is involved in the SII market, it must have regard to:

  • government as market enabler and developer;
  • value for money;
  • co‑design with stakeholders;
  • fair sharing of risk and return;
  • robust outcomes based measurement and evaluation; and
  • outcomes that align with Australian Government policy priorities. 

As announced in the Budget, the Turnbull Government will also partner with State and Territory governments to trial SIIs and help build the capability of organisations to grow the Australian SII market by investing:

  • $10 million to support State and Territory governments in developing projects which specifically help young people at risk of homelessness, including young people leaving juvenile detention;
  • $12 million to support other priority groups and build an evidence base through data linkages between the Commonwealth and the States to identify further SII opportunities; and
  • $8 million to implement an SII Readiness Fund to support non-government organisations to develop SII opportunities to help people at risk of long-term welfare dependency into jobs, using an expert intermediary to direct the funds.

Together, the principles and measures announced in the 2017-18 Budget form the Government’s response to its Social Impact Investing Discussion Paper released earlier this year. These measures build on our commitment to develop the sector, supported by the Prime Minister’s Community Business Partnership.

The Government will continue to look at ways to reduce regulatory barriers inhibiting the growth of the Social Impact Investing market.  For further information (including submissions to the Social Impact Investing Discussion Paper), see the Treasury website and 2017-18 Budget.