Aboriginal Economic Development

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

The Aboriginal Economic Development (AED) program within the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development (DPIRD) aims to unlock significant and impactful regional Aboriginal economic development opportunities. It builds local capacity and supports new business and jobs for Aboriginal people through primary industries and strategic regional projects. 

Native Seed and Nursery Development Grants Program

Up to $250,000 will be available to support Aboriginal businesses, both emerging and established, to establish efficient, sustainable and good governance practices and structures to become more competitive and increase business income in Western Australia’s Native Seed and Nursery Seedling Industries.

With the growing trends in climate change action, land restoration and regenerative agriculture, there is timely opportunity to increase Aboriginal participation in the growing demand for supply of native seeds and seedlings across the agricultural regions. The objective of the grant program is to increase and grow Aboriginal economic participation in the supply of native seeds and seedlings to meet this growing demand.

The program guidelines, eligibility and application open dates will be available soon. To register your interest, please email aed@dpird.wa.gov.au.

COVID-19 information for small Aboriginal businesses

The AED team has created a summary document of support available from various government agencies to help Aboriginal businesses manage business disruption as a result of COVID-19.

Download the 'AED COVID-19 support information' document under the 'Documents' section on the right-hand side of this page.

If you need further support to work out next steps for your business, please contact the AED team at aed@dpird.wa.gov.au, or:


AED has a common-sense approach to creating tangible change for Aboriginal landholders and their local communities. Built on a foundation of establishing robust relationships, businesses are gradually assisted to be developed with a clear focus on sustainability and economic development leading to greater profitability. This results in significant and beneficial life changes for people and their communities, and flow through to the wider regional and State economies.

Through a comprehensive corporate governance process, training and support, and the involvement of other government and non-government organisations, many Aboriginal agricultural businesses now have the capacity to manage their own business sustainably.

AED activities link to numerous State priorities. For example, the program continues to support the South West Native Title Settlement and economic opportunities that arise through this process.

The AED program operates through a collaborative regional approach. In the north of the State, the focus is on pastoralism and beef production, whilst the south is focused on diversified Aboriginal farming businesses.

AED officers are located in Broome, Carnarvon, Geraldton, Perth, Albany, Kalgoorlie and Esperance.

For more details about the AED program, including the vision, strategic intent and what the team does, see the Aboriginal Economic Development program framework.


Contact information

Mark Chmielewski
+61 (0)8 9368 3974
Page last updated: Monday, 12 September 2022 - 2:11pm


Daisy Goodwin