South Australian exporters have participated in a first-of-its-kind survey to support the State Government with its international engagement strategy.
Minister for Investment and Trade Martin Hamilton-Smith said the survey was sent to around 1800 South Australian exporters across every industry.
“I wanted to know what South Australian exporters had experienced and endeavoured to achieve,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“It was pleasing to find out that 86 per cent of respondents had exported in the past two years, and of those remaining, two thirds intended to export in the next two years.
“The survey also highlighted that small to medium enterprises are the key drivers of South Australian exports – 64 per cent of respondents employ less than 20 staff. 66 per cent of respondents turnover less than $5 million and 34 per cent turn over less than $1 million.
“52 per cent of respondents reported a total value of goods and services exported to be less than $500,000 and 28 per cent less than $100,000.
The majority of South Australia’s small to medium enterprises have recognised that their ongoing prosperity depends on trading with international markets – 85 per cent of the survey respondents indicated an intention to export to new markets in the next two years.
“The survey indicated the most popular export markets were China at 22 per cent, the United States at 16 per cent, New Zealand at 12 per cent and the United Kingdom at 11 per cent.
“South Australian exporters also said their key markets of interest are China, Europe, United Kingdom, United States, South East Asia and East Asia including Japan, Korea and Taiwan.
“The State Government has strengthened its international engagement strategy and recently launched a trade mission blueprint to assist businesses to increase exports and create jobs.
“Following the State Government’s largest ever delegation to China, the 2016 program will again target key global markets including India and South East Asia, United States, Europe and the United Kingdom, the Middle East and North Africa, Japan and South Korea.
“The highest proportions of survey respondents were from the wine, beverage, food and agriculture sector with 39 per cent, followed by manufacturing, advanced manufacturing at 25 per cent, and professional services at 10 per cent.
“This activity is reflected in our export figures; small to medium enterprise exports in food, wine and advanced manufacturing products have risen,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“Those export categories over which the State Government has no control like bulk commodities, metal ores, copper, wheat and petroleum products have decreased in line with national trends.
“As the State Government continues to strengthen its trade and investment strategy, it’s critical we consult with the business community to inform our future policy directions.
“Our overseas goods and services export market is worth $14.3 billion and supports more than 65,000 jobs – the State Government wants more businesses to export to more destinations in larger quantities.
There has been significant interest from South Australian businesses in the State Government’s Export Partnership Program which provides 50:50 funding up to $50,000 to assist companies to boost exports to international markets.
“State Government TradeStart advisers are also available to support current and aspiring exporters to strategically engage with international markets.
For more information visit: www.statedevelopment.sa.gov.au/businessmissions