The State Government has committed $10 million over the next four financial years to boost exports and jobs.
The increase in funding coincides with the release of a discussion paper seeking input on a South Australia-North Atlantic Engagement Strategy, designed to help boost investment and create jobs by strengthening our relationship with the North American and European markets.
Investment and Trade Minister Martin Hamilton-Smith said the increase to be detailed in the Mid-Year Budget Review will support further engagement with key trading partners, including expanding the State’s ability to hold inbound and outbound trade missions.
“This funding will enable the State Government to implement its recently launched annual programme of trade missions to help businesses increase exports and create jobs,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“The 2016 program will recognise the 30th anniversary of South Australia’s sister-state relationship with Shandong Province in China, following our largest ever delegation in May.
“Other program highlights include India and South East Asia, United States of America, Europe and the United Kingdom, the Middle East and North Africa, Japan and South Korea.
“This international engagement plan sets a pattern for future years and will give small to medium enterprises certainty as they structure their own international engagement programs.”
During a tour of South Australian coffee pods manufacturer Podpac today, Mr Hamilton-Smith also announced a further $1.7 million dollars will be dedicated over the next two financial years to the Export Partnership Program.
The program provides like-for-like funding to South Australian exporters to help accelerate marketing activities and create new export activity, leading to new job opportunities.
“Since its launch in March 2015, it has been extremely popular, with a 400 per cent increase in uptake, compared to the former Gateway Business Program,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“Podpac received a $49,800 Export Partnership Program grant to help it develop an innovative e-commerce website to promote coffee pods online to key global markets.
“Podpac is a South Australian success story, having secured exports of their coffee pods to the United States, Hong Kong and mainland China.”
Mr Hamilton-Smith said businesses like Podpac and industry will play an important role in contributing to a North Atlantic Strategy Directions Paper.
“The Directions Paper will highlight how South Australia should engage with this region to help attract foreign direct investment, increase exports and increase research and development activity,” he said.
“Australia enjoys a long-lasting relationship and close cultural links with the United States and European Union and these markets continue to be a major source for trade and investment.
“We are keen to strengthen our relationship with North Atlantic countries in areas of mutual interest.
“These include natural resources, energy, renewable assets, agribusiness, health, science, pharmacology and biotechnology.
“Once developed, the strategy will build upon the state’s relationship with some of its oldest trade partners, ensuring they know that South Australia is open and ready for business.
“The North Atlantic region is the largest source of foreign direct investment into Australia, with Europe leading and North America a close second.”
Mr Hamilton-Smith said the State Government recognises that South Australia’s ongoing prosperity depends on our trade and investment in growing international markets.
“More South Australian businesses are looking beyond their existing domestic markets, selling premium products and services to the world,” he said.
“Our overseas goods and services export market is worth $14.7 billion and supports more than 65,000 jobs – we are determined to grow this sector,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
For more information visit: www.statedevelopment.sa.gov.au/businessmissions