Minister for Investment and Trade Martin Hamilton-Smith will strengthen South Australia’s export aspirations at the national Trade and Investment Ministers’ Meeting.
The forum to be held in Hobart today will be chaired by Federal Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb and attended by state ministers, as well as senior trade and investment officers.
Mr Hamilton-Smith said the meeting will focus on a collaborative approach to international economic engagement.
It follows last weeks meeting with key South East Asian business and government representatives in Malaysia, Thailand and Singapore as part of an effort to enhance trade opportunities in the region.
Mr Hamilton-Smith will also join Premier Jay Weatherill to lead the largest South Australian trade delegation to China this month, before travelling to India and South East Asia again in August alongside the Premier.
“South Australia is committed to enhancing its export markets,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“The State Government recognises that South Australia’s ongoing prosperity depends on our national and international trade and investment connections and alliances, and this is particularly true in the context of Asian markets.
“This forum will identify how South Australia may benefit from the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement that is expected to come into effect at the end of this year. It will also hone in on potential benefits to South Australia from other recently signed bilateral agreements, including the Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement, and the Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement.”
Mr Hamilton-Smith’s recent trip to South East Asia helped to strengthen cultural and trade links with the region – a key outcome of the recently launched South Australia-South East Asia Engagement Strategy.
“South Australian exporters have established new relationships with a number of potential partner organisations in market, all of whom are keen to support the August mission,” Mr Hamilton-Smith said.
“Another focus of the South East Asia trip was to further discussion about enhancing the State Government’s in-country trade representation in the region.
“The State Government will continue to work with the investment specialists at Austrade to ensure foreign businesses are aware of the diverse range of investment opportunities South Australia has to offer.
“The state has embedded Austrade officers in key international markets, who are helping to strengthen South Australia’s reputation on the global stage.
“This has been so successful that we are now looking to establish similar representation in Kuala Lumpur and Singapore, with the support of Austrade, to help take advantage of increasing investment and trade opportunities with those countries.
“South Australia’s trade relationship with South East Asia is growing at an impressive rate, with $1.8 billion worth of goods exported in the 12 months to March 2015.”