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Western Australia released its Asian Engagement Strategy to support industry to interact with the growth of Asia.
With Asia representing 60 per cent of the world’s middle class by 2030, the Strategy complements the Diversify WA framework, as a multi-sector roadmap.
The strategy outlines four areas where the government will support the state’s engagement with its northern neighbours. These include maximising investment and trade opportunities, a commitment to Asian language capabilities, people-to-people links between WA and Asian nations, and the provision of direct advice and access to business and trade networks.
Simultaneously, the WA government announced the $1.2 million Access Asia fund, for SME’s to leverage marketing opportunities to grow their export capabilities.
“The strategy is also highly collaborative, and the State Government will support and consult WA businesses to increase their skills and capacity to trade with Asia,” said Asian Engagement Minister, Peter Tinley.
Today, merchandise exports to Asia from WA stand at $129 billion, with 70 per cent of the $24 billion increase from 2004 to 2018 based on iron ore and petroleum.
To grow the amount of exports from other sectors, the Access Asia fund is targeted to exporters in the Diversify WA framework, including education providers, technology and advanced manufacturing, and tourism, events, and creative industries.
“The Access Asia business grants demonstrates the McGowan Government’s plan to deliver on its Asian Engagement Strategy, diversify the economy and create jobs and prosperity for WA,” said Tinley.
In the first round, which opens on Monday, September 16, 25 grants of up to $10,000 are available, and another round will open in 2020-21.
“WA’s economic future is tied to Asia’s burgeoning economies, and a vast range of opportunities exist to export WA’s world-leading resources, produce, services and skills, as well as promoting our outstanding tourism and education industries,” said Tinley.