Trade Talk, 29 September 2016

Trade mission to Iran

Minister Steven Ciobo led a 20-strong trade mission to Iran this week. With a population of almost 80 million and a GDP of about US$393b, the mission focussed on the many opportunities Iran's re-engagement into the global economy offers Australian businesses. A number of agreements were signed.

WTO: Challenging world trade growth outlook

World trade will grow more slowly than expected in 2016, expanding by just 1.7%, well below the April forecast of 2.8%, according to the latest WTO trade outlook. The forecast for 2017 has also been revised, with trade now expected to grow between 1.8% and 3.1%, down from 3.6% previously. Slowing GDP and trade growth in developing economies such as China and Brazil are reflected in the results, alongside uncertainties such as the possibility of anti-trade rhetoric translating into changes in trade policy and the potential effects of Brexit on European trade.

New Export Ready app released

Technology is helping Australian businesses navigate their way to export success. The Export Essentials app will help all exporters no matter their level of experience, from an introduction to exporting through to managing currency risk, finance solutions, export licenses and regulations. The app was created by Efic and the ECA and is available free of charge from app stores.

PNG-Australia trade in focus

PNG's Minister for Trade Richard Maru focussed on the potential for growth in the bilateral trade and investment relationship on a recent visit to Australia. Site visits included manufacturing businesses, agricultural research, seafood processing, tropical-climate beef and dairy breeding programs, food irradiation, tertiary education and trade services training. 

Sugar, cotton and canola forecast to record rises in exports

ABARES' September Quarterly Agricultural commodities report forecasts rises in export earnings for wool (6%), sugar (21%), wine (1%), cotton (40%), lamb (3%) and canola (43%).  Expected export earnings for fisheries products are similarly strong, with growth of 8% anticipated for 2016-17.  A feature report on Investment in Australian Farms suggests that corporate investors are unlikely to significantly displace the Australian family farm ownership structure in the near future.

International student numbers up

The latest data on international students studying in Australia on a student visa – already reaching nearly half a million this year – show 11% growth in student numbers compared with the same period in 2015. Growth was evident across the board, from higher award to non-award sectors. Increases in higher education and vocational education and training enrolments comprised strong growth in hospitality (36%), science, technology, engineering and mathematics (14%).

DHL Export Barometer 2016

This year's Barometer shows that positive sentiment in relation to the China FTA is increasing, with 67% of exporters saying they expect it will benefit their business in the future.  Nearly a third of these businesses are also seeking to increase exports by localising their online presence in China. The Barometer is based on a survey of 302 Australian exporters undertaken between late May and early July 2016. 

Did you know?

Australia's horticulture exports such as bulbs, plants and cut flowers were worth around $9m in 2015-16. Of these, fresh cut flowers suitable for bouquets or arrangements were worth $3m, with 53% going to Japan.

Upcoming Trade Events

FTA Training Provider 2016-2017 Grant Round Information Sessions

Melbourne, VIC, 5 October | Hobart, TAS, 6 October 2016

Australia-based business organisations, including peak industry associations and education institutions, are encouraged to attend this Austrade-led session to learn how to apply for a grant under the FTA-TP. The focus of the FTA-TP grant program has expanded beyond FTA training delivery to include market visits. Further seminars available in Adelaide, Perth and Canberra for October. Refer to the Austrade site for details.

Exporting Food and Beverages using Japan-Australia Economic Partnership

Melbourne, VIC, 4 October 2016

Australian food and beverage exporters will learn about the advantages delivered by JAEPA. Participants will be informed about how best to prepare for market entry and the range of initiatives in both the food and premium food service sectors.

North Asia Free Trade Agreements Information Seminar

Mooloolaba, QLD, 5 October 2016

Participants will learn about Australia's FTAs with China, Japan and Korea, and how to obtain their benefits.  Trade experts from the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Austrade as well as other relevant departments will be on hand to answer your questions. 

Lowy Event: The G20 and Australia

Sydney, NSW, 6 October 2016

In 2014 Australia hosted the G20 and the Leaders' Summit was held in Brisbane. In this Lowy lecture the Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, Dr Martin Parkinson PSM, will detail Australia's efforts to strengthen the effectiveness of the G20 and the importance of promoting dialogue between governments, business, academics and non-government organisations.

Tourism Australia Industry Briefing

Hobart, TAS, 4 November | Adelaide, SA, 10 November | Sydney, NSW, 15 November 2016

Tourism Australia's industry briefings feature presentations from TA's senior executives covering current and future activities. Participants will hear TA's insights and research from key international markets for each local audience.

Last Updated: 29 September 2016