South Australian exporters are being encouraged to participate in a first-of-its-kind survey to assist the State Government with the continual development of its trade and investment strategy.
Minister for Investment and Trade Martin Hamilton-Smith said the survey, sent to around 2000 businesses, is seeking feedback on a number of issues with the view of better understanding the needs of both aspiring and experienced exporters.
“I want to know in as much detail as possible the experiences and endeavours – past, present and future – of South Australian exporters across every industry,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“The survey asks local exporters, for example, about what markets they intend to target and their previous involvement in trade missions, either inward or outward.
“As the State Government continues to grow its trade and investment strategy, it’s critical we consult with the business community to inform the State Government’s future policy directions.
“This survey presents a prime opportunity for South Australian exporters to have their say and I encourage each and every one to do so.”
Mr Hamilton-Smith said the survey, which coincides with the completion of South Australia’s largest ever international trade mission, is one of several significant projects being undertaken within the trade and investment portfolio at present.
“The trade mission to China was extremely valuable for local businesses looking to build important relationships and increase their international presence, which will ultimately have a flow-on effect to the broader South Australian economy,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“Similar trade missions will take place in India and South East Asia in August, and I encourage interested companies to register their interest now.
“These trade missions will complement the State Government’s economic engagement strategies, which includes the South East Asia strategy and the biennial review of the China and India strategies.
“These engagement strategies support the State Government’s 10 economic priorities – all of which have an international engagement imperative.
“They are particularly relevant to promoting South Australia’s international connections and engagement in support of economic growth – welcoming new people, new ideas, new investment and business partnerships.”
Mr Hamilton-Smith also highlighted the strong response to the first round of the Export Partnership Program, which received 45 applications for funding.
“Applications are now being assessed and the allocation of funding will be announced in the near future,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
In addition to the new grant program and trade missions, the Government is delivering expert advice and networks via its partnership with Austrade to deliver TradeStart services around the state, with a strong focus on engaging new companies.
“More than 80 new companies were signed up to the TradeStart program during this period, of which 38 are first time exporters – a good start on the target of 50 new exporters annually,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
The most recent Australian Bureau of Statistics trade figures found the value of goods exported from South Australia totalled $11.6 billion in the 12 months to March 2015, with the top two markets being China ($2.7 billion) and South East Asia ($1.8 billion). India ranked fifth with $786 million.