THE 2018 budget is positive for small and medium sized exporters, but it is “not a major leap,” according to the Export Council of Australia.
ECA head of policy Heath Baker said the budged was an incremental step forward.
“The government has rightly been a champion of trade and has trumpeted its achievements in signing FTAs,” Mr Baker said.
“But, if you want to grow trade, FTAs are only part of the answer. This budget goes some way to addressing SME [small and medium-sized enterprise] exporters’ other needs—but there’s still more to be done.”
The ECA welcomed the $20m allocated in the budget to establish an SME export hubs program. The council also noted the Department of Foreign Affairs would receive an injection of $15m towards expanding FTA outreach, helping businesses better access the department’s economic and security insights, as well as developing a strategy to address the non-tariff measures that prevent businesses from exporting.