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Export Council of Australia | www.export.org.au | WINTER 2017

INSIDE EXPORT AWARDS Special preview - Pages 8-9 DUTCH COMPANY INVESTS IN AUSSIE TEXTILES - Pages 16-17 FOCUS ON CENTRAL EUROPE - Pages 20-22 2018 COMMONWEALTH GAMES Reaping gold for QLD trade - Pages 28-29 CREDIT INSURANCE How it works and why you need it - Pages 30-31

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CONTENTS Export House Level 2, 22 Pitt Street Sydney NSW 2000 Toll free 1300 361 526 Phone 02 8243 7400 Email info@export.org.au Fax 02 9251 6492

Published by

Phone 0414 290 488 Email advertising@dynamicexport.com.au Web www.dynamicexport.com.au Publisher and National Marketing Manager Julie Fletcher Editor Tim Michael Production Karmen Rai IT Manager Rob Fearn

All rights reserved © 2017 No part of this work covered by the publisher’s copyright may be reproduced in any form by any means, graphic, electronic, or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, taping, or information storage and retrieval, without the written permission of the publisher. Any unauthorised use of this publication will result in immediate legal proceedings. Publisher’s note Although every care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information contained within this publication, neither the publishers, authors nor their employers can be held liable for any inaccuracies, errors or omissions.

FROM THE MINISTER CEO UPDATE EDITOR’S LETTER

1 2-3 4

LATEST NEWS

5-6

EXPORT AWARDS Special preview

8-9

ASEAN CONNECTED Massive opportunities for Australian business

10-11

FEATURE: IMPORTANCE OF TRADE How international success helps boosts our economy

12-15

PEOPLE Vadain: Breathing new life into Australia’s textile industry

16-17

FOREIGN EXCHANGE Protecting yourself against currency exchange volatility

18-19

FOCUS ON CENTRAL EUROPE Business opportunities abound

20-22

SPECIAL FEATURE Football club opens the door to China for Australian business

23-25

SPOTLIGHT ON UK – POST BREXIT What does the future hold for Australian trade?

26-27

COMMONWEALTH GAMES Reaping gold for Queensland business

28-29

SPECIAL REPORT: CREDIT INSURANCE How does it work and why do you need it?

30-31

FTA REVIEW Seminars helping business to expand

33-35

TIM’s TIPS Tim Harcourt’s guide to doing business in Japan

36-37

CALENDAR OF EVENTS

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FROM THE MINISTER STEVEN CIOBO MP Securing our prosperity through greater trade and investment Australia has entered its 26th consecutive year of economic growth, in no small part due to the contribution of trade and investment. Last year Australia’s goods and services exports rose 7.6% in real terms, and net exports contributed 1.4 percentage points to our 2.4% annual growth in real GDP. Australia’s relatively small population means that we will continue to rely on imported capital and bigger overseas markets to keep our standards of living high. That is why the Turnbull Government is pursuing an ambitious trade agenda to create new opportunities for Australian businesses that will in turn contribute to more investment, more economic growth and more jobs. At the top of the list is the IndonesiaAustralia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement. Indonesia is growing into a powerhouse economy with a population of more than 250 million people and an expanding middle class that will demand more goods and services over time. The Turnbull Government also recently launched FTA negotiations with Hong Kong and Peru. A FTA with Hong Kong would complement our FTA with China and further integrate the Australian economy with Asia. It will be a very modern FTA, focused on services access.

In the coming months, we will launch FTA negotiations with the European Union. Australia is continuing to progress our economic relationship with the UK through the Trading Working Group, with a mind to launching formal FTA negotiations when the time is right. At the regional level, we are intensifying negotiations to conclude the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership – a deal that brings together nine of Australia’s top 13 trading partners, almost 30 per cent of global GDP and 60 per cent of our two-way trade. In parallel, ASEAN, Australia and New Zealand are reviewing AANZFTA to ensure the Agreement remains relevant to business. The government is also delivering tools to help Australian businesses understand and utilise our existing free trade agreements. We recently delivered another round of FTA Training Provider Grants that are designed to help businesses around Australia tap into surging export markets. The Export Council of Australia is one of several organisations receiving such a grant. The Turnbull Government’s ambitious trade agenda is a crucial component of our plan to keep Australia’s economy growing and creating opportunities across our society, both now and into the future. I look forward to continuing to work with important stakeholders like the Export Council of Australia in achieving the right policy settings for domestic economic growth, and the jobs they bring for Australians across industry sectors. By the Hon Steven Ciobo MP, Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment

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FORWARD

CEO UPDATE LISA MCAULEY It’s a new financial year and it’s time for Australian exporters to seize the day and take advantage of a whole range of opportunities that are sitting right on our doorstep. What a start to the year we have had. Working in international trade makes it impossible to shut off from the daily updates and developments in the Northern hemisphere. At the ECA, it is our job to monitor trade policy messaging and announcements in markets like the United States and the United Kingdom on behalf of our members, and the team here has certainly been kept on their toes. The international environment has changed from that of even one year ago, but instead of chaos we believe this can create opportunity. Australia has a window to position ourselves as a beacon of free and open trade and investment, attracting more business to our shores and creating new international opportunities for our companies. The trade development challenge for the ECA is to provide the support businesses need to take advantage of these opportunities abroad. We hope that the work we have been doing on launching the

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following programs and tools can assist you to grab the opportunities: • Be Trade Ready: ‘Be Trade Ready’ is a new digital tool from ANZ and the ECA, designed to assist Australian businesses assess and plan for their international expansion. Find out more at: betradeready.anz.com • International Business Coaching: This is a one-on-one matching service that aligns the specific needs of an individual company with the services of a subject expert. The ECA has an arsenal of experts in a variety of areas related to international business, including ECA staff members and Directors, industry professionals, and academics. • Online Going Global: Are you an Australian business looking to export your product overseas? Our Growing a Global Business course will equip you with the necessary skills to take your business to the next level. • Doing Business in China: A new series of workshops aimed at helping Australian MSMEs take on the China market with confidence, giving them the best chance of success. In the second half of the year, I can promise you that we are not standing still, as we continue to drive services that help to build your capability and capacity to engage in international markets. Over the next couple of months make sure to look out for announcements on: • Argentina’s Renewal: A new report on the opportunities opening up for Australian companies in the secondlargest economy in South America

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FORWARD • ASEAN FTA Toolkits: Four practical toolkits to assist Australian businesses with navigating Australia’s free trade agreements with Southeast Asia • New Trade Policy & Compliance Toolkit: a new toolkit to assist you to navigate the ever changing trade policy landscape.

New Financial Year: New Membership Benefits As we enter a new financial year, I am very pleased to announce the ECA has gone back to the drawing board to review our membership benefits and how we can create value for our network. As Australia’s only organisation focused entirely on the needs of Australia’s international businesses, when you join the ECA, we become partners, working with you to support the international success of your business. We have been supporting companies to grow internationally for over 60 years. This means we understand: • the capabilities and skills your business needs for international success; • how to help solve your international business problems; • what you need from government and how to get it; • where you can find specialist advice.

New membership business benefits include: • 20% discount* on the ECA’s one-on-one international business coaching program • 20% discount* on tickets to the NSW, QLD and WA State Export Awards Gala dinners, the best international business networking events of the year • 20% discount* for your staff on all face-to-face ECA public courses to accelerate your global growth • Free advice on your international trade challenges • Gaining a strong advocate to represent your interests with federal and state governments • Three complimentary sessions per year with the ECA’s international business mentors • Unrestricted access to ECA research insights on topics that will help you succeed internationally I encourage all companies seeking to engage with international opportunities to start by taking advantage of the ECA’s range of support services by visiting our website at www.export.org.au. For those of you who regularly receive our newsletter but are unsure if you are a member, please feel free to reach out to us at info@export.org.au to check your membership status, or give us a call at 02 8243 7400. We look forward to welcoming you to our network and becoming part of a community working to advance Australia’s interests in trade. With kind regards, Lisa McAuley CEO, Export Council of Australia

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FORWARD

EDITOR’S LETTER TIM MICHAEL How important is trade to the Australian economy?

Canada, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand.

The short answer is: “it’s vital.”

During the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, a parallel program of trade and investment activities will be held at Commonwealth House, the new purpose-built international trade and investment hub in the heart of the Gold Coast.

In this edition of International Business Today ECA CEO Lisa McAuley explains why trade and investment is a key driver of jobs, innovation and long-term prosperity for Australia. Ms McAuley says more Australia businesses should consider showcasing their products and services to the world – because when your business succeeds on the world stage – so does Australia. In this issue we also highlight the business opportunities which are expected to flow with the staging of the Commonwealth Games in Queensland’s Gold Coast next year. Queenslanders will welcome more than 6,600 leading athletes and team officials from 70 nations and territories to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. To coincide with the Games the Queensland Government has launched a new initiative – Trade 2018 – to strengthen trade and investment ties with Commonwealth nations.

On the other side of the globe, we turn the spotlight on Eastern Europe and the trade opportunities for Australia. This feature includes a Postcard from Warsaw and its many and varied tourist attractions. We also turn our attention to the Netherlands and ask: “Why is Vadain, a world leader in custom made window coverings, investing in a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility at Logan on the outskirts of Brisbane?” Arjen Hoekman, Director of Vadain, reveals all. In addition, we have a special report on our most recent free trade agreements in North Asia and how they are benefiting Australian business – particularly our primary producers. And don’t miss our special preview of this year’s state and territory Export Awards – a must attend event for Australian exporters. Enjoy the read.

The Government is keen to grow exports and attract investment from overseas markets, including the United Kingdom,

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NEWS

AUSTRALIAN BLOCKCHAIN TECH ON SHOW IN NEW YORK By Sarkis Khoury Australia’s blockchain capabilities and technologies have been showcased to global leaders and investors in the US.

smart contracts and cloud storage, New York City is a vital research, development and deployment market for disruptive technology,” said Ms Watkinson.

Last May, a 26-member Australian delegation visited Consensus 2017 in New York, which featured more than 100 speakers and 2,000 attendees representing over 800 companies from 35 countries.

Blockchain technology has attracted increasing global attention due to its ability to disrupt existing business models and processes. This emerging technology has the potential to build trust, reduce cost and accelerate secure transactions across a range of sectors.

They presented globally competitive and innovative solutions across the spectrum of industry applications, from digital currencies and payments to agricultural supply chains, smart contracts and identity management.

By using cryptography, blockchains can allow multiple parties to keep private information private, while remaining publicly auditable, providing a foundation for multi-party trust. Blockchain technology is also increasingly becoming a viable tool for financial services startups and large corporations.

Consensus 2017, now in its third year, has become a landmark event on the blockchain calendar. The event attracts global professionals from leading industry startups, investors, financial institutions, and academic and policy groups who are building the foundations of the blockchain and digital currency economy. Nicola Watkinson, Austrade’s Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner, US and Canada said, the mission to Consensus 2017 provided a unique platform to profile Australia as a global leader in the testing and development of blockchain technology and standards, and position Australia as an attractive investment destination. “New York City is also a hotbed for blockchain technology, management and innovation. From digital currencies, to payments, decentralised energy to

“Australia is well positioned to provide global leadership and has become a pioneer in proof-of- concept and adoption of blockchain technologies. Australian financial institutions, in particular, stand in a globally competitive position,” Ms Watkinson added. In the Federal Budget the Government announced its intent to eliminate Bitcoin double tax. Specifically, it will seek to align the GST treatment of digital currencies such as Bitcoin with regular currencies in a bid to promote the growth of Australia’s fintech industry. ABOUT ADCCA ADCCA is the country’s leading council and representation of and for digital currency businesses along with other key industry participants. ADCCA As the Australian Digital Currency business association, our charge is to speak at a national and international level on behalf of the nation’s leading DC businesses. The organisation’s founding mandate is intended to act as the essential connection between merchants, industry, governments, regulators, financial institutions and influential policy forums which give direction to this emerging industry at home and abroad. Find out more: http://adcca.org.au/

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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NEWS

ECA SUPPORT FOR FEDERAL BUDGET By Tim Michael

The Export Council of Australia (ECA) praises the trade-facilitating measures announced in this year’s Federal Budget.

• Infrastructure: A $75 billion commitment to address infrastructure needs across Australia, including a second airport for Sydney and inland rail development.

The long-term commitment to improve domestic infrastructure in Australia, and “business as usual” funding for
the Australian Trade and Investment Commission will assist Australian industry to engage in the global economy.

• A  dvanced Manufacturing: A $101.5 million commitment over five years to establish the Advanced Manufacturing Fund to promote research and capital development for high technology manufacturing businesses.

The ECA believes the latest budget will help to create new jobs and support manufacturing initiatives. It also provides investment in regional transformation projects and addresses regulatory reform which will ensure longterm prosperity for Australia. In its annual Trade Policy Recommendations to government, the ECA has highlighted the importance of trade to the Australian economy and the need
for government to continue to address impediments to Australian businesses’ ability to compete internationally. As trade is a key driver of job creation and domestic competitiveness, the ECA believes trade considerations need to be central to determining Australia’s domestic economic policy settings. The ECA is pleased to see the following new initiatives as part of this year’s Budget:

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• Regional Growth: A $472.2 investment commitment over four years to establish the Regional Growth Fund. • N  ational Partnership on Regulatory Reform: Establishment of the national partnership on Regulatory Reform to remove regulatory restrictions on small business and competition. • A  SEAN-Australia Leaders’ Summit: The ECA congratulates the Australian Government’s initiative to host the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN)- Australia Leader’s Summit in 2018. Ironically, for a country suffering the tyranny of distance,
it is often domestic costs that make our exporters uncompetitive. The ECA has long identified the need to address regulatory barriers to trade, and this year will launch a new tool that will act as an online repository of primary information on domestic and international non-tariff measures that impede Australia’s trade. Last year the ECA launched its ASEAN Connected project as regional trade links with our ASEAN neighbours are critical to Australia’s future prosperity. Hosting the ASEAN leaders in Sydney next year will ensure that Australia reinforces its commitment to its regional partners as well as promote greater trade and investment opportunities for Australian businesses.

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NEWS

AUSTRALIA’S EXPORT CREDIT AGENCY GETS NEW MANAGING DIRECTOR

TRADE FACILITATION THROUGH MUTUAL RECOGNITION ARRANGEMENTS

The Board of Australia’s export credit agency, Efic, has appointed a new Managing Director, Ms Swati Dave.

Australia has entered into several new international arrangements that will improve the nation’s competitiveness and ability to trade globally.

Ms Dave has more than 30 years’ experience in finance and banking across a range of sectors in both domestic and international markets.

The Department of Immigration and Border Protection signed Mutual Recognition Arrangements (MRAs) with Korea Customs Service, Canada Border Services Agency and Hong Kong Customs and Excise Department in early July.

She has held a number of senior roles, most recently as Executive General Manager at the National Australia Bank.

An MRA is a formal arrangement between customs agencies that recognises supply chain security programmes and provides reciprocal benefits to the other country’s trusted partners.

In announcing the appointment, the Minister for Trade Steven Ciobo said Ms Dave brings to Efic a strong track record of leading strategy, driving customer focus, risk management and people leadership. “With extensive international experience, she has led and grown complex P&L businesses in the United Kingdom, Hong Kong and Singapore, as well as here in Australia,” Mr Ciobo said. “Ms Dave’s breadth of experience has seen her work across a range of diverse sectors such as infrastructure, energy and utilities, renewable energy, and property.” Mr Ciobo thanked outgoing Efic Managing Director Mr Andrew Hunter for his considerable contribution. During the last four years Efic has helped almost 300 exporters with more than $500m of facilities. Ms Dave will take up the new role on July 3.

The MRAs ensure that Australian Trusted Traders receive preferential border treatment and trade facilitation benefits when conducting trade with MRA partners. MRAs also provide border agencies with greater end-to-end assurance over imports and exports—allowing Trusted Traders in Hong Kong, Korea and Canada to have more control over timeframes for moving goods across their international supply chain. The Department signed its first MRA with New Zealand Customs Service in July 2016. The MRA will deliver a mutually beneficial outcome that increases both nations’ contributions to international supply chain security and trade facilitation. It is anticipated that the MRA will allow up to 13 per cent of New Zealand import volume to Australia— totalling $3 billion—to be facilitated, along with $7.5 billion of Australian exports by 2020. MRAs further demonstrate Australia’s commitment to improving two-way trade and investment flows with our international counterparts. By improving Australia’s competitiveness in the international trade market, the country will benefit from greater job opportunities and investment in our nation. To find out how the Australian Trusted Trader programme could benefit your business, or to learn more about MRAs, visit border.gov.au/trustedtrader.

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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EXPORT AWARDS

AUSTRALIA’S MOST ENTERPRISING RECOGNITION PROGRAM LAUNCHED By Richelle Ward

The success of Australia’s exporters will be celebrated through the 55th Australian Export Awards program, which opened last month.

Last year’s national winners included a naval architectural firm, and producers of medical simulation technology, soil moisture control systems and modular mineral-processing plants.

The awards highlight the international business success of Australian companies based on export growth, marketing and financial strategies.

Envato, an online marketplace for digital content, was named the 2016 Australian Exporter of the Year.

The Minister for Trade, Investment and Tourism, Steven Ciobo and the ECA encourages exporters from all states and territories to enter. Australia’s exporters generate far-reaching benefits for the Australian economy. The 81 national finalists in the 2016 Australian Export Awards generated more than $12.3 billion in export sales in 2015-16 and employed more than 34,500 people. Applicants are first judged in their relevant state or territory’s export awards program, with the winners progressing to become national finalists in the Australian Export Awards. Applications are accepted in 12 national export award categories, which demonstrate the diversity of Australia’s export sector, including Digital Technologies, e-Commerce, Health and Biotechnology, Regional Exporter and Small Business.

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The Awards also recognise an outstanding international company that has made a long-term contribution to the Australian economy, for the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment’s Investment Award. The 2016 winner was Boeing Australia, which has been in Australia for almost 90 years and has invested more than $1 billion in its Australian operations over that time. Boeing now employs more than 3,000 people in 27 locations around Australia, and is a strong supporter of Australian suppliers looking to expand into global supply chains. The ECA is proud to again host the 2017 Premier’s NSW Export Awards with the support of its principle partner, NSW Trade & Investment. It is also honoured to manage the QLD and WA award programs on behalf of Trade & Investment Queensland and the WA Government and remains a strong supporter of the ACT and Victoria awards. The Australian Export Awards are an opportunity to thank the international business community and business champions across Australia for their commitment to driving international business success. The program is about rewarding businesses that have shown a commitment and determination to grow their global

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EXPORT AWARDS business and who, against adversity, seek new innovative ways to compete on the international stage.

Important dates and contacts:

It is important that we continue to share your stories of resilience, passion, dedication and international success, and in turn foster the next generation of companies to look at overseas opportunities.

New South Wales Applications close: Monday, August 14 Contact: Kristen Mulligan kristenmulligan@export.org.au (02) 8243 7400

As some of the largest and most enterprising programs across the country the ECA is asking companies to put their hand up to get the recognition they deserve.

Queensland Applications close: Monday, August 7 Contact: Susan Smit Susansmit@export.org.au (07) 3514 3134

You cannot underestimate how valuable the government crest associated with the winner’s logo can be in terms of tapping into new markets. The export awards programs are free to enter and offer many benefits including application assistance, business package giveaways, networking with peers and government trade commissioners. To register your interest or for more information visit: www.exportawards.gov.au

Western Australia Applications close: Monday, August 7 Contact: Honor Iosif honoriosif@export.org.au (08) 6141 3139 Victoria Applications close: Monday, July 31 Contact: Darrin Vouch darrin.vouch@ecodev.vic.gov.au (03) 9651 9498 Northern Territory Applications close: Monday, August 7 Contact: Kate Morrissey kmorrissey@chambernt.com.au (08) 8982 8125 South Australia Applications close: Monday, August 7 Contact: Victoria Thurston exportawards@business-sa.com (08) 8300 0000 ACT Applications close: Sunday, August 6 Contact: Dean Seeley dean.seeley@canberrabusiness.com (02) 6247 4199 Tasmania Applications close: Monday, August 7 Contact: Fransina Kennedy fransina.kennedy@stategrowth.tas.gov.au (03) 6165 5049

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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FEATURE

RIGHT APPROACH TO THE MASSIVE ASEAN OPPORTUNITY By Peter McKenna Businesses across all sectors, of all sizes, from all parts of the world are flocking to Southeast Asia to be part of the huge growth story there. The 10 countries – Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam - collectively known as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), are a global “hotspot” for growth and diversity, driven by the fast growing consumer class and rapid urbanisation.

Australian and ASEAN member businesses work together in doing trade and investment across this wider region. Opportunity Businesses are attracted to ASEAN’s growth and diversity story that is providing trade and investment opportunities in all sectors across ASEAN. ASEAN’s mix of mature, emerging and frontier markets, which are being economically integrated into a single market and production base under the ASEAN Economic Community (AEC) launched in late 2015, is fuelling these opportunities.

Over the last 10 years, GDP has tripled to US $2.5 trillion with an annual growth rate of 5%, and now ASEAN is the 7th largest economy in the world. Its growth rate is only surpassed by China and India, and ASEAN is expected to be the world’s 4th largest economy by 2050. Australia and ASEAN are close neighbours, with free trade and other agreements driving an expanding and deepening regional integration. This integration is powering up two-way trade and investment between Australian and ASEAN businesses, but the potential for further business is massive. To make this business happen, Australian and ASEAN businesses need a broader perspective and business approach that takes in the wider Australia-ASEAN region. This is the focus of the Australia-ASEAN Business Council (AABC). The AABC is revitalising as a powerful B2B platform where 10 | INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

While still a work-in-progress, the AEC is consolidating ASEAN’s position as a high growth, globally connected economic powerhouse, strategically located at the centre of the Asian growth engine between China and India. Businesses around the world are attracted to ASEAN’s growth drivers: • World’s 3rd largest and young population of 620 million • World’s 3rd largest work force • Mass movement of over 90 million people to urban areas by 2030 • Consumer class doubling to around 160 million households by 2030

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FEATURE • World leaders in using technologies like Facebook and mobile phones

• Driving innovation in business offerings and solutions

• Infrastructure needs expected to approach $100 billion annually.

• Using free trade agreements to improve competitiveness

Right Approach This huge ASEAN opportunity sits on Australia’s doorstep. ASEAN is now Australia’s second largest two-way trading partner. The traditional trade route, mainly through Singapore, is now changing to be more direct with Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. Two-way investment with ASEAN, however, is still low compared to other countries, and not widespread across ASEAN countries. Doing business in ASEAN requires a different approach to that used by Australian businesses in their traditional markets. It starts with the recognition that, despite the wide diversity in markets, languages, cultures and business environments, business has been transacted across these ASEAN markets for centuries, and foreign SMEs and large companies, including Australian, are now doing the same.

AABC helps B2B The time for Australian and ASEAN businesses to collaborate in making trade and investment happen is now. AABC’s strong relationships across Australia and ASEAN, enforced by business briefings, conferences, training and clustering, directly support B2B engagement, exploration, and skills development across the region. The AABC invites new members from Australia and ASEAN in all industry sectors.

Successful companies are skilled first in building trusted relationships and arrangements through effective networking and collaboration to manage the diversity and risks in doing business. Second, they adapt to the mindset and approach of most ASEAN businesses, large and small, which are family or privately owned. These businesses are typically focused at the longer view, with less decision-making bureaucracy. Australia’s young growth companies look a natural fit with ASEAN businesses. Their CEOs have a deeper appreciation of ASEAN cultures and customs given Australia’s multiculturalism over the last 20 years, and are usually privately owned. They are more likely to have the mindset to culturally connect and collaborate, with the flexibility and agility required to work with ASEAN businesses in growing ASEAN. The right approach to ASEAN also includes: • Taking a regional, not just country approach to business planning • Looking for opportunity in the diversity across markets

The Export Council of Australia (ECA) is an Australian Partner of the AABC. ECA CEO Lisa McAuley says ASEAN has been overshadowed by the recent FTAs with China, Korea and Japan. But awareness will grow as the RCEP agreement is finalised and business sees ASEAN’s central position in the Asia growth region. “We are together with the Australia-ASEAN Business Council in promoting ASEAN as a key opportunity for Australian business,” says Ms McAuley. The ECA’s ASEAN Connected report and Toolkits are also useful references. Peter McKenna is Managing Director, Venturenauts (which specialises in helping Australian and ASEAN companies develop their international business in markets across Southeast Asia and Australia); and Vice President, Australia-ASEAN Business Council The full version of this article is published at www.australia-aseanbc.org.

• Finding similarities in the opportunities across markets INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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FEATURE

THE IMPORTANCE OF TRADE When your business succeeds offshore, so does Australia By Tim Michael There are more overseas opportunities for Australian businesses than ever before, but most SMEs are failing to take advantage, says ECA CEO Lisa McAuley.

Ms McAuley says growing the number of SME exporters and ensuring their international success is increasingly important to Australia’s future economic growth, and to ensuring quality jobs for future generations of Australians.

According to a Department of Industry, Innovation and Science study earlier this year there were more than 2.17 million actively trading businesses in Australia – an increase of 2.4 per cent from June 2015.

“The paradox is that despite the low growth in SME exports, Australian firms enjoy more overseas opportunities than ever before, particularly in the context of international demand for what this country produces and the growing array of liberalising trade agreements.”

“But despite this growing number of businesses, in 2014-15 fewer than 52,000 businesses were actively engaged in exporting goods and services,” says Ms McAuley.

Ms McAuley says the key the trade development challenge is to provide the support businesses need to take advantage of new opportunities abroad.

“And fewer than 300 businesses export more than $100 million of goods each year. “This elite half-of-one-percent of exporters account for 83% of Australia’s exports. “To put this in context, internationally the top 1% of exporters account for only 53% of goods exports.”

“We must redouble our efforts to ensure all Australians are benefitting from trade. If we do not, then the protectionists will triumph, leading to policies that inevitably dampen economic growth and job creation. If 2016 has taught us one thing, it’s that this is a very real threat.” Ms McAuley says trade and Investment will be a key driver of jobs, innovation and long-term prosperity for Australia.

And the story gets worse, she says. “Between 2006 and 2014 Australian goods exports grew by $105 billion. These elite exporters pocketed $101 billion of that growth. “Over that period, China’s GDP tripled, and the economies of ASEAN and India doubled. But Australia’s SME exporters missed out. “We need to achieve greater balance.”

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“At the same time, we also need to counter the rise in antitrade, anti-globalisation rhetoric and protectionist policies internationally. This protectionism is driven by a feeling that only the rich are benefitting from globalisation.

The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science study found that SME exporters are generally larger than non-exporters in terms of employment, value-added and capital expenditure. On average, exporters are also more productive and pay higher wages. Exporters demonstrate superior performance even before they begin to export. As of June 2016 this was primarily driven by growth in small businesses (ie, those with fewer than 20 employees).

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FEATURE “But out of the chaos comes opportunity,” says Ms McAuley. We have a window to position ourselves as a beacon of free and open trade and investment, and therefore attract more business to our shores and open new international opportunities for our companies.

“And when your business succeeds, so does Australia, as exports are a driver of economic growth, job creation and long-term prosperity.” Ms McAuley says the ECA’s preference is for trade liberalisation to occur on a multilateral basis. “However, given that the WTO Doha Round of negotiations has stalled, the ECA sees benefit in continuing to promote greater international trade and investment flows through bilateral, regional and plurilateral free trade agreements. “The ECA supports international agreements that serve to further liberalise trade between Australia and the rest of the world.”

“To capitalise, Australia needs more trade and investment-capable companies to engage with these opportunities.” Ms McAuley says there are many benefits to taking your products or services to the world, including: • Increased sales revenue and profit: Australia is a small market, and expanding overseas allows you to increase your sales potential. • Lowering risk: Selling internationally can help you reduce the risk of being exposed to local fluctuations in business cycles. • More innovation: International competition can inspire the development of new products and services that keep you ahead of the game.

When it comes to market access, Australian businesses enjoy equal or better access to many of the world’s fastestgrowing economies than our competitors in Europe or North America, thanks to our expansive network of Asian FTAs. “To ensure Australia leverages the benefits from FTAs with its trading partners, the ECA applauds the work undertaken by DFAT and Austrade in educating SMEs on understanding how to use FTAs. “We believe that continued ongoing practical, user-friendly information to assist individual businesses, especially services companies, utilise these agreements is imperative. “I often describe FTAs as the cherry on top of the cake. FTAs are only useful where there is market opportunity. So to strain this analogy, it needs to be much easier to make the cake.” To the non-exporter, exporting is a daunting prospect, Ms McAuley says. “The ECA had a look at some agricultural exports finding some products needed 24 different documents for one export transaction.

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FEATURE “To break down these knowledge barriers, we need to encourage education and skills development programs for businesses, particularly smaller business.”

To facilitate international trade governments should do everything possible to simplify the exporting process, Ms McAuley says.

SMEs should also develop the management skills needed to enable them to access information and contacts, as well as the legal and commercial intelligence required to navigate regulatory regimes in global markets.

“We can do some things domestically, but the real gains can be made internationally, through things like simplifying rules of origin and mutual recognition of trusted trader programs.

The ECA partnered with ANZ Banking Group to develop a new digital tool has been launched to help Australian businesses plan for international expansion with a one-stopshop that provides data-driven insights to support export plans.

“Another major impediment to trade is non-tariff measures. These can significantly increase the cost of doing business internationally and are difficult to address in trade agreements. In-market, there is a fundamental role for posts to understand the NTMs affecting Australian businesses and help resolve them. “In order to do this, the government can understand which NTMs to address by working with businesses and peak bodies.”

The Export Council of Australia (ECA) was instrumental in driving the development by ANZ of “Be Trade Ready”. The online tool gives Australian businesses access to comparative information on Free Trade Agreements in 10 key markets and across 16 industry sectors, and a wealth of market information. The FTA comparisons – not available anywhere else in this form - give unique insights that will enable SME exporters to make strategic decisions about market access. The tool also contains information about benchmarking, forecasting of revenue, and capital requirements for international expansion. “ECA’s mission is to help build the capability and capacity of Australian SME exporters,” Ms McAuley says. “We believe the Be Trade Ready tool will place vital information in the hands of SME exporters, putting them in a better position to make informed decisions about their international business expansion. “The ECA will continually strive to upskill and prepare Australian exporters to take on the world, through tools like Be Trade Ready, our extensive skills development offering, well-regarded publications, world-class research, and policy initiatives.” Visit the Be Trade Ready tool to help inform your international business expansion plans: http://betradeready.anz.com/

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The ECA has long identified the need to address regulatory barriers to trade, and this year will launch a new tool that will act as an online repository of primary information on domestic and international non-tariff measures that impede Australia’s trade. Ms McAuley offers the following advice for Australian companies looking to expand their business overseas: “Navigating the complexity of doing business globally and maintaining a competitive edge requires up-to-date skills and knowledge. “SMEs engaged in global trade need to develop the management skills to enable them to access necessary information and contacts, as well as the legal and commercial intelligence to navigate regulatory regimes in global markets. “The ECA recommends that companies invest upfront in building their capabilities and capacities to grow internationally. Building a global business requires team work and a global mindset from the very beginning, across your entire organisation. “Building your internal capacity and identifying key strategies to support your international business are vital to international success.”


April 2017

10 Facts about

PEOPLE

Australian Trade More money in the pockets of Australians

$3900

BETTER OFF A YEAR

Tariff cuts have boosted Australia’s GDP by 2.5 to 3.5 per cent. This translates to an extra $2700 to $3900 in real income each year for the average family.1

Millions of Australian jobs rely on trade

1in 5 JOBS

2.7 million Australian jobs rely on trade. That’s one in every five jobs – from factory workers, farmers and shop assistants to truck drivers, hospitality workers and university lecturers.3

Trade boosts production and improves efficiency

$93 billion

PROCESSED & MANUFACTURED EXPORTS 2015-16 5

By selling into export markets, Australian businesses gain economies of scale. This allows more investment in local value-adding – from meat processing and food production to manufacturing and wine-making.

Trade accounts for 40% of Australia’s GDP

$662 billion EXPORTS/IMPORTS 2015-16

Australia’s international trade was worth $662 billion in 2015-16. That means trade is integral to our economy.2

Australian exports are worth hundreds of billions

18.9%

SHARE OF GDP 2015-16

Australia earnt $312.3 billion from exports of goods and services in 2015-16. That represents 18.9 per cent of GDP, or nearly one in every five dollars of our economic output.4

Trade delivers higher wages, better job security

11.5%

HIGHER WAGES

Australian exporters pay employees 11.5 per cent more on average than non-exporters. They create more jobs and are less likely to suffer 6 business failure.BUSINESS INTERNATIONAL TODAY WINTER 2017 | 15


PEOPLE

DUTCH MANUFACTURER VADAIN BREATHES NEW LIFE INTO AUSTRALIA’S TEXTILE INDUSTRY By Tim Michael

In the past 40 years Vadain has grown from a small workroom servicing one store to an international player in the highly competitive window coverings market. The company specialises in mass customisation in window covering products and as a full service supplier is able to deliver high volumes of custom made window coverings in a short, pre-agreed time frame. The privately-owned Dutch company has earned a global reputation for innovation and ground breaking technology in the market for window coverings. With a strong presence in Europe, the company has set its sights on new international markets. Creating Jobs Australia – a country with similar work standards to the Netherlands and an abundance of suppliers and skilled workers – was considered an ideal location to set up shop. One of the directors of Vadain, Arjen Hoekman, paid several visits to Australia to get a better understanding of the market structure, labour and the availability of skilled people and the work ethics. “We had been working closely with our major account in Australia and had noticed

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a movement in the window coverings industry towards manufacturing in Asia.” Mr Hoekman explains. “We jointly identified the opportunity for an Australian made custom product with a short time to market, as the business conditions in Australia were similar to the market in Europe. With the experience we have collected over the past 40 years we were convinced we could set up a sustainable business in Australia.” Therefore, in 2014 the company made the momentous decision to invest $1 million to establish a manufacturing facility in Logan City, south of Brisbane. That investment has been crucial to the local economy, creating 40 new jobs which were much needed given the closure of a significant textile manufacturing company and giving jobseekers opportunities to find a similarly skilled role with Vadain. Why Logan City? “After having done extensive market research and working closely with Austrade, Trade and Investment Queensland (TIQ) & Logan City Council we were able to build a sustainable business case which supported our decision to make a long term investment,” said Mr Hoekman. “The availability of well skilled workers with good working ethics made the choice of Logan City perfect for our company.” Logan City is benefiting from Vadain’s decision to source as much local product as possible, using fabric from Australian suppliers and engaging a Brisbane-based business to service and maintain machines in the facility.

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PEOPLE Our people, Our success The key to the company’s success has been its people. “As an organization we have always valued our employees, many of whom have been with us for more than 25 years,” says Mr Hoekman. “This level of appreciation and the social responsibility towards our people has been a major reason for our success. In the past 40 years the company has been both tempted and challenged by options for producing in countries with substantially lower wages than we faced in the Netherlands. “However, the company believed in the existing production facility and was triggered to find innovative ways to be able to compete with these influences.” His company is very pleased with the short term results in Australia and is looking confidently to expand the business – and its employees.

“This has been a mutually beneficial situation for both the students, who experience a working environment in the manufacturing industry. The company gains from staying open to the fresh ideas of the students. It has even resulted in us hiring some of the students once they had finished their courses, which is wonderful.” In recognition of its contribution to the local economy Vadain was nominated for an investment award at the Australian Export Awards last year. “We are extremely proud to have been nominated for the Awards,” said Mr Hoekman. We never expected this, however we appreciate that our investment in Logan City has been noticed and appreciated.” And while Vadain is currently focussed on delivering an Australian made product to the Australian market, it has already received requests from other countries in the AsiaPacific region, including Singapore and Malaysia. “We will be exploring these expansion opportunities over the next few years.

Share and learn Vadain is working closely with several educational institutions in the region to assist students to gain a career in textiles. “We have happily accepted the requests from local schools to show their students about working in the window covering industry.

Creating jobs: Vadain’s new Brisbane facility

Arjen Hoekman: ‘long term investment’

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PEOPLE

MONEY MAKES THE WORLD GO AROUND: JUST ASK OFX BOSS SKANDER MALCOLM By Tim Michael Skander Malcolm is CEO of OFX, a leading Foreign Exchange service provider. In this interview with International Business Today Mr Malcolm explains how Australian exporters can protect themselves against currency exchange rate volatility and where to find the most competitive rates … International money transfers play a vital role in any successful export business, so it makes sense to secure the most competitive exchange rates and transfer fees.

currencies, and have moved over $119 billion in international money transfers since opening its doors. The company now has a global network boasting relationships with 159 banks. “We use an interbank system meaning that we have access to the best security to keep your money safe,” Mr Malcolm says.

When it comes to Foreign Exchange services, Skander Malcolm is an expert in the field. His company OFX, launched in 1998 as OzForex, a leading Australian online foreign exchange and payments company. “OFX is on a mission to change the way the world moves money, because we’ve found a better way to do it,” Mr Malcolm explains. “‘Better’ meaning cheaper and also faster – we are usually able to save customers up to 75% on bank rates … and most of our transactions clear the following business day after they are sent.” In most major markets worldwide businesses are paying more than necessary to the major banks that operate, Mr Malcolm says. “We can help by saving them real money and also providing a great service.” OFX makes more than 3,300 transfers daily around the world across 55 different 18 | INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

“We also have 24/7 customer support and dedicated client managers who will take the time to understand your payments needs and your business, and work with you to execute a strategy that minimizes your exposure to changing rates.” When choosing a Foreign Exchange service provider exporters should look to partner with a company that can offer them a dedicated relationship manager – someone who is a currency expert, but also will take the time to understand your business operations and weekly challenges. “Each company will vary in terms of their rates, their commissions and their personalised service, you have to meet a few to find the one that best suits your needs.”

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PEOPLE

So how can Australian exporters protect themselves against exchange rate fluctuations and minimise their risk?

“OFX has connections with specialists in this area, although we mainly work to execute on predetermined hedging strategies.”

“The most flexible way to guard against exchange rate movement is via forward exchange contracts,” says Mr Malcolm.

Mr Malcolm says now is the ideal time for Australian exporters to hedge currency risk.

“These are agreements between two parties to exchange two designated currencies at a specific time in the future. These contracts always take place on a date after the date that the spot contract settles and are used to protect the buyer from fluctuations in currency prices. This gives an exporter the opportunity to set a rate that will be acceptable to them, and when that rate comes in we can automatically move their funds. It removes the need for exporters to spend time watching the FX market each day, reducing time and stress.” To minimise the impact of currency volatility, many exporters have a “hedging” strategy in place.

“The Australian dollar has been range bound lately, but there are a number of economic pressures approaching that could see a breakout,” he warns. “The US federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates later this year, a decision that would see USD strength return. “The AUD will continue to be driven by the outlook for commodity prices, as it remains a heavily weighted commodity barometer.” Mr Malcolm says OFX can offer guidance on choosing the best planning tools. “We offer forward exchange contracts and a range of other currency management services that can help to minimize risk and save on administration time.”

“A hedging strategy is basically a currency plan across all of your business geographies and interests. “A specialist advisor will look at where you’re trading, what currencies you’re working with, your currency flow (how much you’re moving and how often), and they’ll look at offsetting risk in one location against another.

Skander Malcolm: 24/7 customer support

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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PLACES

TAKE A CLOSER LOOK AT CENTRAL EUROPE By Anthony Weymouth Australian companies seeking to expand into new international markets should closely consider Central Europe, given a myriad of opportunities in sectors like resources and energy, consumer products, health and advanced manufacturing. Comprising 19 countries, Central Europe has a population of around 178 million stretching from the Baltic Sea to the Balkans, and an aggregate GDP of US$1.9 trillion. Two-way trade with Australia is worth approximately A$3.8 billion. Central European markets are considered a bright spot for business across Europe because they continue to experience relatively strong economic growth. Poland, the Czech and Slovak Republics are upper-middle-income nations that have rapidly transformed to market-based economies following the fall of communism in 1989. Poland, the Czech and Slovak Republics are all expected to grow at two to three per cent per annum over the next three years. Growth will be driven by increased disbursements of European Union funds, private consumption supported by a stronger labour market, and improving business confidence. Although challenges such as rising economic nationalism has affected foreign investment, the markets are generally well regulated and corruption issues are being addressed.

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Defence and energy security Geo-political tensions, terrorism and the immigration crisis have increased the emphasis on defence and energy security. As a result, Poland has allocated A$45 billion until 2026 to modernise its armed forces, while the Czech Defence Minister announced in January 2017 plans to invest 180 billion Czech crowns (A$9.4 billion) over the next decade. Energy security is another key priority across Central Europe, with the sector undergoing fundamental transformation. To achieve this, more than â‚Ź70 billion has been committed or planned for gas infrastructure projects across Europe over the next five years. The projects will help improve connectivity through upgraded gas grids, increase capacity to store gas, and establish LNG-receiving terminals in Poland and Croatia. Poland is also one of the largest coal producers in Europe. Coal remains vital to the Polish energy mix, accounting for over 70 per cent of electricity generation. This is unlikely to change in the medium term, although the Polish Government is committed to maintaining and modernising the industry. Structural changes are showing promise and state-owned enterprises continue to look for solutions to reduce costs and increase productivity and efficiency. Wine Strong growth rates across Central Europe over the last two decades have resulted in a significant rise in GDP per capita wealth in Poland and the Czech and Slovak Republics to $29,349, $34,849 and $33,054 respectively. This rise in wealth and change in lifestyles have increased demand for high-end consumer goods such as wine.

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PLACES Wine consumption in Poland is forecast to grow at five per cent annually. There is considerable upside, as the current four litres per capita consumption is well below the 20 litres experienced in more mature markets. Healthcare Demand for health and aged care systems in Central Europe is also expected to experience unprecedented pressure due to a growing ageing population. More than 20 per cent of the population in Central Europe and the Baltics is aged 50-64 and is expected to increase steadily over the coming decades. The combination of an ageing population, rising wealth, changing social norms and an aspiration to reach the level of EU-15 countries is expected to result in increased expenditure in the senior living care sector. Infrastructure projects The influence of the European Union’s structural adjustment funds – which aim to upgrade the infrastructure of new member

countries – continues to be a strong economic driver and presents significant opportunities for Australian businesses. Poland and the Czech Republic and Slovak Republic will receive ¤82.5 billion, ¤21.6 billion and ¤13.7 billion respectively over the 2014-20 period for a range of projects in infrastructure (road and rail), energy (mining, oil and gas) healthcare, defence, aerospace and education. Poland’s railway network forms a key element of Europe’s wider transport system, acting as a transit crossroad for both north-south and east-west traffic. Poland has embarked on a modernisation program with plans to spend ¤10.5 billion until 2020. This will include upgrading rail infrastructure, especially modernising existing tracks to accommodate high-speed trains; improving rail safety; increasing transport efficiency; and adding new rolling stock and rail freight operations. Advanced manufacturing Key markets in Central Europe have successfully shifted from planned economies to modern market-based economies integrated into European Union value chains. This is particularly evident in advanced manufacturing sectors – such as automotive, aerospace and defence – which have been stimulated by inward foreign direct investment largely sourced from Western Europe and the United States.

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PLACES

Anthony Weymouth … myriad of opportunities in Central Europe

The Polish aerospace industry is also playing an important role in the global aviation supply chain and is now ranked eighth globally for aviation manufacturing. Major international players such as Pratt & Whitney, Safran, Airbus, Sikorski, Leonardo and UTC Aerospace Systems have established offices in Poland. Accessing the opportunities

Central Europe markets are generally price sensitive but proven innovative services and solutions, particularly those that lift living standards, will help secure a place in the market. There are many opportunities for Australian businesses across Central Europe, so contact Austrade Warsaw for more information and to discuss how we can help you enter the market. For more information

Australian companies in the region include Macquarie, Goodman and Brambles, which are all building a strong presence in the logistics sector. Similarly, leading medical device manufacturers like ResMed and Cochlear are helping improve the lives of the region’s citizens. The most common market entry strategy for Australian companies has been to appoint a local partner or distributor. However, to be successful, Australian companies need to be actively involved in marketing and promoting their product, and visit the market regularly.

www.austrade.gov.au Warsaw@austrade.gov.au Austrade – Australian Business in Central Europe @AustradeWarsaw Anthony Weymouth is Austrade’s Senior Trade Commissioner for Central Europe

Language is not a significant issue, as English is widely spoken in internationally exposed sectors such as manufacturing. Most young people also have reasonable competency in the English language.

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CASE STUDY

AFL PROMOTION HELPS TO STRENGTHEN SINO-AUSTRALIAN TRADE TIES By Tim Michael

Aussie businesses set to kick a goal in China

China was considered an uncontested space for Australian sporting teams, so there was a logic to the proposal.

Who ever thought Australian Rules football could be successfully exported to China?

A senior executive Matthew Richardson discussed the issue with the CEO and board, who decided to embrace the initiative – and the rest as they say, is history.

But thanks to some forward thinking from officials at the Port Adelaide Football Club the game is now taking off in a big way. Earlier this year China was given a sample of the thrill and excitement of Australian Rules football when Shanghai hosted its first ever AFL contest. The game at Jiangwan Stadium between Port Adelaide and the Gold Coast Suns proved an outstanding success, attracting a capacity crowd in excess of 10,000. But off the field, the benefits that will flow to Australian business are even more promising. The promotion is the brainchild of a longtime Port Adelaide Football Club member who floated the idea about two years ago. Denis Way, who has resided in Hong Kong since 1971, said football was an ideal way for the Port Adelaide club – and Australian business – to engage with China. At that time, there were about 100 professional sporting clubs in Australia, all competing for sponsorship from a relatively small pool of local companies. And each club was vying for members and fans from a relatively small population.

Andrew Hunter, who joined the club in March 2015, was appointed General Manager responsible for Port Adelaide’s China Engagement Strategy. He currently has six people working under him on the project, with ambitious plans to further expand the team. Mr Hunter works closely with club CEO Keith Thomas and is responsible for the implementation of the club’s engagement in China, including government relations and commercialisation. He is proud of the many benefits that continue to flow from the China promotion. “Port Adelaide has established itself as a legitimate bridge between the governments, businesses and people of Australia and China,” he says. “Port Adelaide also brings Australian and Chinese businesses together. We have connected with a substantial number of new partners because of the China Engagement Strategy – some of which have contributed substantially to the club. “We have a business matching forum (China Power Club) and run investment attraction forums at which Australian companies present projects to Chinese investors. “Finally, and perhaps most meaningfully, we bring people together. For example, we invite Chinese students to each of our home games. It is not always easy for international students to feel a part of their host community, but when

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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CASE STUDY these students put on the Port Adelaide scarf and attend a game, they feel part of something bigger. We also do a range of events in the Chinese community.” Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull announced the AFL China promotion in April last year during Australia Week in China in Shanghai, and Premier Li Keqiang attended Port Adelaide’s round 1 match this season.

contributing to sports diplomacy, which will have a positive impact on the broader relationship. “Port Adelaide is therefore developing a strong reputation in China, and the club is increasingly seen as a trusted partner. Being a partner of Port Adelaide therefore would help legitimise the brand of our partners looking to China.”

When tickets to the Shanghai event went on sale earlier this year the game was sold out in under two hours. “The supporters, both Australian and Chinese, enjoyed the experience,” said Mr Hunter. “The networking that took place in the hospitality tents at the game is becoming legendary.” Mr Hunter said the club is increasingly able to provide Australian companies with access to a strong pool of partners in China.

As well as promoting the club, Port Adelaide’s China Engagement Strategy has been instrumental in promoting trade ties between the two nations.

“It helps to be referred by a trusted third party,” he says.

As part of the strategy, the China Power Club has been launched to attract businesses interested in engaging in China, or with the Chinese community in Australia.

“The support of Prime Minister Turnbull and Premier Li has certainly helped in that respect, as people acknowledge that we are

The Club conducts a series of events around football games or events at which they can network.

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CASE STUDY “Each company or individual pays a membership fee, which provides a price point which ensures that the companies are of a certain quality,” says Mr Hunter. “In return, we provide access at our events and games to business groups like the Shanghai Entrepreneurs Association, migrant investors and business people from China, and our Chinese partners and their associates.” The group is building each year. Apart from making connections in China, Club members also develop a strong connection with each other, for commercial benefit and information-sharing. “Some China Power Club members, such as Cathay Pacific and Haneco Lighting, have elevated their engagement with Port Adelaide to become significant sponsors of the club.” Last month, the China Power Club hosted a Business Opportunities Forum before play began at Port Adelaide’s home match against the Brisbane Lions.

representatives who flew in to attend the event and match. “Although it is too early to tell whether outcomes will be achieved, there is substantial interest in at least four of the six projects, which we see as very positive,” Mr Hunter said. Similar events are planned before the end of the year. “We are in conversation with the Shanghai Entrepreneurs Association and also with partners in other parts of China. “We would like to replicate the same model as the Business Opportunities Forum but hold the event in China, to reach a new audience. “Discussions have thus far been positive.” Mr Hunter said the club is now considering expanding its sporting and business network outside China. “For the moment, we are looking to build upon our partnership with DCNS to develop other opportunities with French companies. “As a French-speaker, long-time resident of France and member of the South Australia Government’s French Engagement Advisory Group, I am keen to see what opportunities might be available in developing a deeper connection with France.”

Six South Australian companies presented investment opportunities to 45 investors from China and Malaysia and their

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SPOTLIGHT ON

POST-BREXIT: WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD FOR AUSTRALIAN TRADE? By Tim Michael Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is a major turning point in Europe’s history. Brexit presents many challenges, much uncertainty, and the consequences are complex, says the Minister for Trade, Investment and Tourism, Steven Ciobo. The political turmoil in the UK following the recent cliffhanger election has thrown another spanner in the works – with Britain’s post-Brexit arrangements with the EU now unclear. Pre-election polls all pointed to a landslide victory for British Prime Minister Theresa May. But the end result – a hung Parliament – has been the opposite to the Brexit mandate the PM expected. So what does the future hold for Australia post-Brexit? There is no doubt Britain will be looking for new trading partners and Australia is poised to strike. Minister Ciobo says Australia wants to move as quickly as possible to negotiate a high-quality free trade agreement when Britain leaves the EU. There are many other countries that will be keen to do a deal with the UK, but Australia is well-placed to benefit. Britain has always been an important market for Australian trade, and London has long been a natural base for Australian companies. Today, the UK is our second-largest foreign investor and our seventh largest trading partner. In 2014 the UK represented 37.4% of Australia’s total exports to the EU. Australia has always enjoyed a special historical relationship with Britain, both culturally and commercially.

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Both countries share strong sporting ties with rivalries in sports such as netball, rugby and, most notably, cricket. Before the British election, Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull held preliminary talks with Prime Minister May over a possible free trade agreement. “We make an attractive trading partner – we’re an open, innovative and protrade country with a stable, reliable and prosperous economy,” says Minister Ciobo. “And we’re ready to do business. “I see great potential for Australia to take our work with Britain to a new level, after the UK departs the European Union.” Australia is also in the early stages of negotiations for a free trade agreement with the European Union, Australia’s secondlargest trading partner and largest source of foreign investment. With Brexit, the Australia-EU Free Trade Agreement will still be important but by losing the UK as a key ally in the EU, it may become more difficult. In 2015-16, two-way trade with the EU was worth $95.6 billion and total investment from the EU was worth almost $1 trillion. The EU is Australia’s largest services export market, valued at nearly $10 billion in 2014. Services account for 19.7% of Australia’s


SPOTLIGHT ON total trade in goods and services, and will be an important component of any future agreement with Europe.

Our bilateral trade has progressed from a basic commodities exchange to a highly sophisticated relationship in services and other advanced areas, reflecting the mutual trust between our two confident economies.

Mr Ciobo says Australia wants to build a deeper economic relationship with both the UK and EU through more and freer trade. As well as being mutually beneficial, securing new free trade deals sends an important signal globally about the benefits of trade liberalisation, he says. Earlier this year, Mr Ciobo met with key economic ministers in London, including Secretary of State for International Trade Liam Fox, and Minister of State for Trade Policy Lord Price. The ministers agreed to establish a bilateral Trade Working Group to scope out the parameters of an ambitious and comprehensive Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement.

Mr Ciobo says Australia will utilise this relationship in areas like attracting fintech investment into Australia, and in helping Australian companies access the UK market. A potential free trade agreement coupled with the effects of Brexit may also open the door to opportunities for Australian service providers in areas such as healthcare, education and research collaboration. And of course, Australia’s agricultural industry may also be poised to benefit.

But first, Britain must go through the process of formally exiting the EU. Legal obligations prevent Britain from signing deals while still an EU member, however Australian business is preparing to ramp up trade with their traditional British market.

“I believe Australia has much to offer the UK in the post-Brexit period and vice versa,” said Mr Ciobo. “We are, in short, ideal partners.”

Trade relations between Australia and the UK are mature and dynamic, with enormous potential, says Minister Ciobo.

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SPECIAL FEATURE

COMMONWEALTH GAMES TO REAP GOLD FOR QLD TRADE By Kate Jones Queenslanders will welcome more than 6,600 leading athletes and team officials from 70 nations and territories to the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games. Our Games will attract 1.5 million spectators and a global television audience of 1.5 billion. It will be the biggest sporting spectacle in Australia for more than a decade. An event of this scale opens up exciting opportunities for the Gold Coast and Queensland to engage with new international business partners. It is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase all that our state has to offer. For this reason, we have launched a new initiative – Trade 2018 – to strengthen our trade and investment ties with Commonwealth nations. The Queensland Government wants to identify business opportunities, grow exports and attract investment from overseas markets, including the United Kingdom, Canada, India, Malaysia, Singapore, Papua New Guinea and New Zealand. We actively target these priority markets as the Queen’s Baton Relay as it makes its way around the Commonwealth. During the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games, a parallel program of trade and investment activities will occur at Commonwealth House, our new purpose-built international trade and investment hub in the heart of the Gold Coast. I encourage all businesses to get on board and actively explore trade and investment opportunities with our Commonwealth partners. We want the world to know that Queensland is open for business. The Games and Trade 2018 is a unique opportunity to build on our already strong ties with trading partners in international education, renewable

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energy and tourism, to name a few, and to develop new global value chains. We want the Games and Trade 2018 to deliver a positive legacy for Queenslanders. The Games is set to become one of our greatest sporting success stories and we want benefits to flow to communities and businesses. Queensland’s strong trading relationship with Commonwealth countries has real potential for growth. Two-way merchandise in 2015-16 was almost $16 billion, with Queensland’s $9.6 billion of sales to member nations – dominated by non-ferrous metals, coal, meat, medicinal and pharmaceutical products and fruit and vegetables – accounting for 20 per cent of the state’s total exports for the year. Imports from Commonwealth nations in 2015-16 totalled $6.2 billion, accounting for 15.5 per cent of the state’s total imports for the year. The Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games is an exciting opportunity for the Gold Coast and Queensland. It will transform the Gold Coast into a truly boutique city of international standing and will drive and deliver economic benefits in Queensland and across the Commonwealth. By the Minister for the Commonwealth Games Kate Jones


SPECIAL FEATURE

The Queen’s Baton leaves Buckingham Palace

Trade 2018 to highlight key strengths Trade 2018 will focus on four priorities that highlight Queensland’s strengths on the world stage: Health and knowledge The Palaszczuk Government in Queensland is investing $405 million through its Advance Queensland strategy to create knowledge-based jobs of the future. The strategy includes an Advance Queensland Industry Attraction Fund, targeting a wide range of innovative and emerging industries, including biomedical and life sciences. Trade 2018 has a particular focus on the 200-hectare Gold Coast Health and Knowledge Precinct, which includes the Gold Coast University Hospital and Griffith University. Minister Kate Jones (centre) at the Gold Coast 2018 Trade and Investment Program Engagement Forum at the Gold Coast

The precinct will host the Commonwealth Games Village. As a legacy after the Games, the site will be transformed into a world-class health and knowledge precinct with residential housing. Food and agribusiness Queensland continues to build on its strong reputation as a leading supplier of high-quality food products. We also have an abundance of traditional native foods that are increasingly being used by leading chefs around the world. There are exciting trade and investment opportunities for businesses keen to explore the untapped potential of Queensland’s native foods. Education and training World-class education and training institutions, multicultural communities, idyllic locations and enviable lifestyle make Queensland the first choice for many international students. Business of sport

QLD Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate at the Queensland Reception in London earlier this year

Queensland’s world-class infrastructure and idyllic locations are a drawcard for major sporting events, international conventions and exhibitions, all set against a backdrop of beautiful natural attractions. We have proven expertise in every aspect of hosting major events.

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DOING BUSINESS

CREDIT INSURANCE: HOW IT WORKS AND WHY YOU NEED IT By Tim Michael Trade Credit Insurance is designed to protect exporters against bad debts and avoid any potential loss of income. But according to Graham Crozier, the Chief Executive of Coface in Australia, many exporters do not have credit insurance cover, placing their businesses at extreme risk. Coface, has been a global leader in credit insurance and risk management for more than 70 years. “We protect companies against bad debts and minimise export risk,” says Mr Crozier. So how does credit insurance work? “Trade Credit Insurance protects part or all of a debtors ledger/trade receivables depending on the structure of your policy and your company’s requirements,” explains Mr Crozier. Coface offers a simple three step process: 1. It performs a credit analysis on your portfolio of buyers to make an assessment on their credit worthiness and the appropriate credit limit. This portfolio of buyers is monitored on an ongoing basis and you will be advised when limits need to be reduced or exited due to new adverse information or a significant deterioration in the buyer’s financial or operational profile. This helps clients avoid any potential loss of income via continued credit transactions.

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2. In the event of non-payment, be it due to insolvency, protracted default or political risk (if chosen as part of the policy), a claimable event will be triggered. Coface will use its expertise and local collection teams in each market to endeavour to collect the outstanding payments. 3. If the debt collection is unsuccessful, Coface will pay the claim to the client, protecting their business cash flow and profitability. Why do Australian exporters need credit insurance? “Advanced payment/cash sales and Bills of Exchange have been the traditional payment methods for exporters,” says Mr Crozier. “However today overseas customers are far more savvy and in many emerging markets open account is increasingly becoming ‘the norm’. “In mature markets such as the US and Western Europe open account has and continues to be the expected payment method.” But exporting with open accounts poses significant risks, Mr Crozier warns. With trade credit insurance businesses can: - Learn more about the markets they want to trade in - Get an expert opinion on the ongoing viability of any prospective clients - Trade on more open terms, rather than Letters of Credit - Get greater access to credit lines from banks or financiers What should Australian exporters look for before choosing credit insurance cover? “They should firstly identify which countries they want to

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DOING BUSINESS

Knowing your customer is absolutely critical

trade with,” says Mr Crozier. And does the insurer provide cover on these countries?

if possible, and with smaller-sized transactions to build confidence and track record.

“They should also determine the level of political risk associated with the target country markets and the relative strength of the prospective buyer portfolio in these countries.

“It can be very difficult, expensive and/or a convoluted process to enforce a contract or pursue debt collection or legal action – particularly if the exporter does not have a local representative or contact that can give assistance.

“Most importantly, what would happen, and what would be the impact on their business if they did not receive payment from their buyer or buyers?” Mr Crozier says the global economy remains vulnerable and some countries have economic issues that have a wide impact across their business environment which may extend to currency volatility and restriction on currency transfer. “Some countries have import barriers or restrictions on products which can impact on competitiveness or access,” he says. “Logistics should also be considered in view of the time it will take to deliver goods to a buyer and what impact this may have on price and demand. Particularly for product with price sensitivity or volatility. “During the past few years we have seen cases where the price of products changed substantially between contract and arrival date which resulted in repudiation or default.”

“Many countries within the region and globally lack transparency so it is often difficult to access meaningful or legitimate information on a potential customer.” Mr Crozier says the global trade environment has become more aggressive and competitive and there is increased demand for unsecured terms. And banks have become more cautious in lending and have higher levels of solvency compliance, which may mean buyers in some sectors or SMEs must rely on supplier credit for financing. Mr Crozier offers the following advice to exporters and potential exporters: “Knowing your customer is absolutely critical,” he says. “You must dig beyond the surface. Obtaining a credit score, vetting the customer’s ability to make payment now and in the future could be the difference between success and failure. “Investing in trade credit insurance will offer both protection in the event of non-payment and provide opportunities to understand and trade in new markets.”

Mr Crozier says it’s also important to have an awareness of local culture as business success can be underpinned by relationships. “In this respect it may be appropriate to start new relationships on secure terms,

Graham Crozier: ‘you need protection against bad debts’

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

WINTER 2017 | 31


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FTA SPECIAL REPORT

NORTH ASIA FTA SEMINARS HELP AUSTRALIAN BUSINESSES EXPAND By Sarkis Khoury Australian businesses are embracing the free national seminars explaining the benefits and opportunities that have been created for Australian businesses as a result of the North Asia free trade agreements (FTAs) with South Korea, Japan and China. Organised by Austrade – in conjunction with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), AusIndustry and Efic – the FTA seminar series was launched in March 2015 with the objective of providing clear and practical information on how Australian business can benefit from the FTAs. The North Asia FTAs – Korea-Australia Free Trade Agreement (KAFTA), Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement (JAEPA) and China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) – are significant given the three countries represent Australia’s largest export markets and account for more than 61 per cent of goods exports. Held across Australia, the three-hour seminars focus on specific regions and industry sectors. The aim is to provide small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) with advice on how to access and harness the competitive advantages of the FTAs to start exporting or enter a new export market. Participants obtain detailed information about the benefits of the FTAs and practical information on how to use them. They participate in an interactive Q&A panel discussion with guests including a local small business representative using the FTAs who shares their experience. An export trade toolkit containing relevant information is also provided to participants. Nick Nichles, Austrade’s General Manager of Marketing, Communications and the Free Trade Agreements Program, said 77 seminars have been held across numerous Australian cities and regional centres to date, attracting more than 3,200 participants.

“Feedback from attendees has been overwhelmingly positive. Participants say the seminars give them a good general understanding of a complex subject, providing valuable information and benefiting non-exporters, beginners and established exporters alike,” Mr Nichles said. “These agreements are opening the door to more than a billion potential new customers and our seminars are aimed at helping Australian businesses maximise the opportunities that now exist.” The FTAs are also enhancing Australia’s competitive position in key sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, resources and energy. They have also provided unprecedented access for Australia’s world class services in industries including finance, health, aged care, architecture, construction and education. “Another significant advantage is the vast majority of Australian goods will enter these Asian markets duty-free. Similarly, imports into Australia will also be cheaper which means more affordable items for consumers, and cheaper inputs for Australian high-end manufacturers,” Mr Nichles added. The seminar series is complemented by the FTA Training Provider (FTA-TP) Grant, administered by Austrade. The FTA-TP Grant assists Australian member-based business organisations and

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FTA SPECIAL REPORT

education institutions to deliver targeted training to help SMEs and stakeholders understand how to use and access Australia’s North Asia FTAs.

Feedback from attendees has been overwhelmingly positive

Successful grant recipients are covering a broad range of sectors as part of their FTA training proposals including: food and fibre wine, dairy, agriculture/ agribusiness, infrastructure, finance, health, pharmaceuticals, education, tourism, hospitality, advanced manufacturing and manufactured goods, marine and mining.

Alliance (Australia’s peak shippers association) have participated in the program. These brokers and freight forwarders are in a unique position in the exporting value chain as they are the last point of contact with Australian businesses before their products are exported.

There are currently 26 grants awarded to national, state and regional bodies committed to providing FTA training to SMEs nationwide.

Marie Piccone, Manbulloo Mangoes Managing Director, who attended a seminar held in Brisbane credited the FTAs as a key factor in her business’ growth, as China and Korea are its largest markets.

To further support the number of businesses accessing these FTA benefits, Austrade, in partnership with DFAT, has developed an Export Value Chain program.

Piconne said the introduction of KAFTA in December 2014 and ChAFTA in December 2015 was extremely welcome, because the two FTAs ensure the tariffs on fresh and dried mangoes will be steadily reduced annually until they are eliminated.

The program is aimed at businesses that assist exporters, such as custom brokers, logistics companies and freight forwarders. It provides information about the value their clients could be getting from the North Asia FTAs and the importance of using a Certificate of Origin. This ensures they can help their clients maximise the benefits of the FTAs. Since April 2017, more than 950 members of the Customs Brokers and Forwarding Council of Australia and the Freight Trade

34 | INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

“We’ve unleashed the dragon! It’s been eight years of hard work getting brand recognition and building relationships with the right partners but now we’re planting an additional 20,000 trees in the Northern Territory to meet supply. We have also bought another farm in North Queensland and we are hoping to plant additional plantations on the tableland,” said Mr Piccone. For more information about Australia’s free trade agreements visit www.austrade.gov.au/fta and to see more case studies go to: www.openforbusiness.gov.au

WINTER 2017


FTA SPECIAL REPORT

NORTH ASIA FTAS AT A GLANCE KOREA-AUSTRALIA FREE TRADE AGREEMENT (KAFTA) • KAFTA entered into force on December 12, 2014 and tariffs have now been cut four times. • Korea is Australia’s third largest export market, with exports valued at $17.8 billion in 2015-16. It is also our fourth latest trading partner, with total two-way trade of $34 billion in 2015-16. • Top five exports to Korea: iron ores & concentrates; coal; beef; education-related travel services and aluminum. • 99.8 per cent of Australia’s goods exports (by value) to Korea will enter duty-free on full implementation of the agreement. JAPAN-AUSTRALIA ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT (JAEPA) • JAEPA entered into force on January 15, 2015. • More than 97 per cent of Australia’s exports to Japan will receive preferential access or enter duty-free when JAEPA is fully implemented. • On entry into force, Japan eliminated tariffs for bulk wine, high polarity (international standard) raw sugar, milk protein concentrates, lactose and casein, wheat and barley for animal feed, some horticulture (including asparagus, macadamia nuts, almonds and mangoes), and some seafood (lobsters, prawns, oysters, crabs and abalone). • Japan is Australia’s second largest export market, with two-way trade valued at $59.9 billion in 2015-16. Total exports to Japan were $40.1 billion in 2015-16. CHINA-AUSTRALIA FREE TRADE AGREEMENT (ChAFTA) • ChAFTA entered into force on December 20, 2015 and removes tariffs on many of Australia’s key agricultural exports such as meat, dairy, and horticulture, better positioning exporters to meet China’s demand for high-quality food. • China is Australia’s largest trading partner with two-way trade valued at $150 billion in 2015-16. • Total exports to China, our largest export market, was $85.9 billion in 2015-16. INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

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TIM’S TIPS

LOST IN TRANSLATION? DOING BUSINESS IN JAPAN By Tim Harcourt The Airport Economist Tim Harcourt flies into Tokyo to find that the world’s 3rd largest economy may be making a comeback under ‘Abenomics’ and there’s more than meets the eye in Japan than just sumo and sushi. I first lived in Tokyo as a four-year-old just when the nation was on the cusp of ‘the Japanese miracle’. My father was taking a sabbatical at Keio University in the heart of Tokyo and a very generous Japanese family moved out of their home so an Australian family of six (us!) could move in for a whole six months! That was my first taste of the extraordinary Japanese hospitality and generosity. And what was the most exciting thing to do for a four-year-old boy in Japan? Take the bullet train of course! The bullet train or ‘shinkansen’ which had been built for the 1964 Tokyo Olympic Games and we took it to Osaka for the 1970 Expo. Interestingly, Expos were well attended in those days as it was before the great exodus of Japanese tourism around the globe. There was little travel outside of Japan in 1970, so looking at the German, Australian, New Zealand or Brazil Pavilions at the Osaka Expo was the first taste the Japanese got of the world around them. Of course, Japan had some glory years economically speaking after the tragedy of World War II and in the 1970s and 1980s

36 | INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

Japan was considered the world economic super and the main rival to America in terms of trade and international competitiveness. Japanese companies like Toyota, Honda and Sony became household names from Sydney to San Francisco and Japan invested heavily in the Asia Pacific region and around the world. Luckily, Australia had got on the bandwagon early and signed a commerce agreement with Japan in 1957 – just 12 years after the end of World War II – and later an Investment agreement (the Nara agreement) in 1976 to build stronger ties with Japan and Asia in general.

But by the 1990s, Japan was unable to continue its spectacular growth and it experienced deflation and two decades of little or no growth. And Japan’s ageing population (Japan is literally ‘running out of husbands’ and some small rural towns are depopulating) haven’t helped the matter. Prime Ministers Shinzo Abe has therefore introduced ‘Abenomics’ to help stimulate the economy through the ‘three arrows’ of fiscal stimulus, monetary stimulus and structural reform. With no inflation to speak of, he feels he can still stimulate and encourage more spending in Japan, especially with unemployment still relatively low at 3.3 per cent.

WINTER 2017


TIM’S TIPS

But for all Japan’s growth woes, it’s still the third largest economy in the world and a very rich country with a sophisticated business culture and discerning cashed up consumers.

TIM’S TIPS

Entrepreneurs like Mike Woodrow of Vet Products Direct have described Japanese consumers “as some of the most sophisticated well informed shoppers in the world with a great eye for detail and presentation.

When travelling around the world it is important to be aware of business and social etiquette.

Later on in life as an adult, I returned to Japan for another Expo, this time not in Osaka but in Nagoya in the Aichi prefecture. It really was a ‘tale of two expos’ some 30 years apart! This modern expo was all about technology with companies like Toyota showing off their latest advances. After all, the Japanese miracle is all about technological advance and even today research and development is important as Japan gets the most research funding than any other country in the world and has the most Nobel Prizes winners in Asia.

Here are Tim’s Tips for Japan:

And at the Aichi Expo, one technological advance surprised even the most sophisticated business traveller. A robot was dressed a flight attendant and asked to help people with directions around the Expo site. ‘She’ was so life-like that some men folk (perhaps after a few too many Asahi beers) even made some unwelcome advances to which the robot replied flawlessly: “Questions of a personal nature should be addressed to my manager.” There’s no way that could have been ‘lost in translation’!

3. Be diplomatic. Japan is a very indirect, polite but generous society.

It’s important that a company had a Japan strategy as well as an Asian strategy and when in Japan take the following tips into account: 1. Be Punctual 2. Be Polite. Japan is still formal in many business settings

4. Don’t bring partners to work functions. 5. Be Prepared to party. Japanese business culture still has a strong social element and it might help you bond and who knows you might a great time as well!

The Airport Economist TV show is aired on Sky News Business Channel and on Qantas International and Domestic flights.

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INTERNATIONAL CALENDAR

SEPTEMBER

OCTOBER

6 – 9 September Electric Power & Renewable Energy Indonesia 2017 Jakarta www.electricindonesia.com

12-14 October Building and Construction Myanmar 2017 Yangon www.buildingmyanmar.com

6-9 September Food & Hotel Thailand Bangkok www.foodhotelthailand.com

12-14 October Electric Power & Renewable Energy Myanmar 2017 Yangon www.electricmyanmar.com

13 – 16 September Construction Indonesia 2017 Jakarta www.constructionindo.com

13-16 September Mining Indonesia 2017 Jakarta www.mining-indonesia.com

13-16 September Oil & Gas Indonesia 2017 Jakarta www.oilgasindonesia.com

18 – 20 September GulfHost Dubai www.gulfhost.ae

25-27 September Communic Indonesia 2017 Jakarta www.communicindonesia.com

25-27 September Broadcast Indonesia 2017 Jakarta www.broadcast-indonesia.com

26 – 29 September Food & Hotel Malaysia Kuala Lumpur www.foodandhotel.com

38 | INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

NOVEMBER 14 – 16 November FHC China Shanghai www.fhcchina.com

14 – 16 November ProWine China Shanghai www.prowinechina.com

12-14 October Mining Myanmar 2017 Yangon www.miningmyanmar.com

TRADE MISSIONS Australia Business Week India 2017 28 Aug – 1 Sep 2017 New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Bhopal

Register here ExplORE Philippines 2017 Mining & Resources 3-7 September 2017 Manila and Didipio Nueva Vizcaya, Philippines

Register here Australia Future Unlimited: Russian Education Mission - Begin EDU Fairs – 2017 Education 15-21 September 2017 Moscow, St Petersburg, Novosibirsk and Tomsk, Russian Federation

Register here Australia Future Unlimited: Kazakhstan Education Mission - Begin EDU Fairs – 2017 Education 29 Sep 2017 – 2 Oct 2017

Register here

WINTER 2017


EDUCATION

INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS COACHING GIVES AUSTRALIAN SMES THE EDGE By Collins Rex There are under 300 Australian businesses exporting more than $100 million of goods each year. This is less than 1% of all Australian businesses, yet they account for over 80% of Australia’s exports. To put this in context, internationally the top 1% of exporters account for only 53% of goods exports. We need to achieve greater balance and increase the number of Australian SME exporters. This is crucial to Australia’s future growth and prosperity, as well as ensuring quality jobs for future generations of Australians The ECA – over its 60-year history – has developed an extensive program of workshops and courses that equip businesses with the skills they need to manage and grow their international operations. The ECA has also worked with countless individual companies, state and federal government departments, and local councils to develop in-house training programs. Building on its extensive education experience, the ECA is proud to now offer an International Business Coaching program: a bespoke offering for Australian businesses that need specialised, hands-on-assistance to achieve their international business goals.

This new program will give SMEs affordable, time-efficient access to one-on-one support from international trade experts, and also from those who have put in the hard yards and are now willing to share their years of experience, warts and all! The program is a one-on-one business matching service that aligns the specific needs of an individual company with the services of an international business expert, including industry professionals, academics, or successful exporters eager to share the secrets of their success. Companies can select from a list of available international business coaching topics, including international business marketing, navigating free trade agreements, and developing an international sales pitch. They can also nominate subjects of their choosing to tailor the experience to their individual business needs. Companies are matched with an International Business Coach of the highest calibre, who will provide specialist advice at a very reasonable rate. ECA Business Members also qualify for a substantial discount, and the ECA manages the entire process. Maximising the program’s flexibility, the program can be conducted-in person or through distance learning. For further information on the ECA’s new International Business Coaching Program, visit http://www.export.org.au/ skills-development/business-coaching or contact Collins Rex at collinsrex@export.org.au. Interested in one of the ECA’s public workshops? Visit http://www.export.org.au/courses/index.html

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ECA COURSES + WORKSHOPS

Import Financing for Growth Sydney – 22 August Register here Melbourne – 23 August Register here

Getting the Documentation Right Sydney – 29 August Register here Melbourne – 30 August Register here

Doing business in China – Agribusiness Sydney – 27 September Register here Melbourne – 28 September Register here

Managing Your International Freight Risks Melbourne – 13 September Register here

Managing Your International Freight Risks for Import Sydney – 19 September Register here Melbourne – 20 September Register here

Supply Chain Security Compliance Sydney – 25 September Register here Melbourne – 26 September Register here

Doing Business in China – Manufacturing Sydney – 23 October Register here Melbourne – 24 October Register here

Financing for Global Growth Sydney – 17 October Register here Melbourne – 18 October Register here

40 | INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TODAY

WINTER 2017

Getting the Import Documentation Right Sydney – 14 November Register here Melbourne – 15 November Register here

Growing Your Business Offshore Sydney – 22 November Register here Melbourne – 23 November Register here

Doing Business in China – Services Sydney – 29 November Register here Melbourne – 30 November Register here

Regulation and Compliance for Importing Sydney – 5 December Register here Melbourne – 6 December Register here


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Taking Australia to the world Whether it’s fresh seafood to Asia, vital machinery parts for your site in Texas, priceless artworks into Los Angeles or e-commerce parcels to London, one thing’s for sure, when you need something air freighted, you need it done quickly. As Australia’s leading air cargo carrier Qantas Freight has been trusted to transport goods all over the world for more than 95 years. To find out how our 1,750 international flights per week can help you access major export markets, please visit qantasfreight.com

International Business Today Winter 2017  

International Business Today is the leading e-magazine in Australia for companies engaged in International Business.