With the Budget results looming the Export Council of Australia (ECA) has identified a number of key factors that will help increase exports and strengthen the Australian economy.
Chief Executive Officer of the Export Council of Australia says that as Trade is a key driver of jobs, innovation and long-term prosperity for Australia and increasing trade and investment is absolutely crucial to unlocking Australia’s future economic growth.”
“The ECA has been calling for measures that improve the position of Australian businesses competing in the global market place for a number of years. Research recently conducted by the ECA reveals that some of our key international competitors, have since the Global Financial Crisis, invested in trade development and improving their business environment to spur economic growth. It is imperative that Australia does the same.”
“So, the big question for Tuesday is whether the government will put trade as a key priority in this year's budget?” Ms McAuley said.
The ECA has outlined some items of what we would like to see government invest in on behalf of our members that include:
- International expansion and innovation through continuing the R&D Tax Incentive in its current form with incentive levels maintained or enhanced. Increasing the funding allocated to the EMDG scheme to $175 million and maintaining this level of funding, indexed, for 5-years to improve business confidence in the scheme and promote certainty. And finally, include training and skills development in international trade as an eligible expense under EMDG.
- Tax relief for SMEs by extending the reduction of the company tax to 28.5% to mid-sized as well as small businesses. With the OECD average at 25 per cent Australia needs to be more competitive.
- Increase investment in trade development to those agencies that support trade promotion so that we can invest in developing a long term strategy and plan for advancing trade development in Australia.
- Trade Facilitation via confirmation that the proposed Trusted Trader program will proceed and that the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service will be allocated sufficient funding to implement the program and that government will confirm what other benefits will be available, which is supported by the ECA's previous 2013/2014 & 2014/2015 Trade Policy recommendations.
With 1 in 5 jobs related to trade, now is the time for Australia to invest in encouraging innovation, creating a competitive business environment, and fostering opportunities for international growth.
The ECA will be launching the results of a study that involved a review of trade promotion services across ten select countries. The Advancing Trade Development report will be launched in July and provides a strong case for the need to invest in trade promotion.
As part of the key recommendations the ECA strongly advocates for:
1. The development of a National Strategy for trade in Australia
2. Setting priorities and policies for trade though the development of a National Plan for Trade
The ECA would like to thank the ITDFund, whose support made it possible for this research to be undertaken.
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Export Council of Australia
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About the Export Council of Australia The Export Council of Australia is the peak Industry body for the Australian export community. The ECA is the next exciting step in the evolution of the Australian Institute of Export (AIEx) which, for over 50 years, has had the interests of Australian exporters at heart.