Australia’s International Business Survey (AIBS) 2018 is the largest undertaking of its kind in the country. It has been surveying current conditions and the future outlook of internationally-engaged Australian businesses for the past ﬁve years.
This year, AIBS paints an encouraging picture of Australia international future. Respondents foresee positive growth for their businesses over the coming years, which has ﬂow on eﬀects for their employment plans here in Australia. Three-quarters of respondents planned to increase employee headcount in Australia oﬀ the back of their positive future outlook, by an average of 41% over the next two years.
AIBS captures an internationally diversiﬁ ed and fairly well experienced sample of the Australian business community. More than 80% of respondents were doing business in more than one country, most commonly earning international revenue from four to ﬁve diﬀerent countries.
Familiar trends from our previous surveys are reinforced this year as well. Countries and regions like the United States, the United Kingdom and New Zealand were the top ﬁ rst markets, with “English-speaking” being the second-biggest deciding factor inﬂuencing these ﬁ rst-market decisions, a er general demand / ﬁ t-for-market factors.
Respondents’ top target markets for the future largely reﬂected Australia’s largest trading partners, being led by the United States, China and the United Kingdom. ASEAN markets
Indonesia and Vietnam were ranked fourth and ﬁfth. India wased for ﬁ h, which shows continuing interest in this large and promising market for Australian businesses.
Funding from retained earnings was the most important means of ﬁnancing interna onal expansion, and most respondents have no need to pursue addi onal debt ﬁ nance
in the next three years.
AIBS 2018 put special focus on two emerging opportunities and trends in Australia’s trade space: the business experience of the La n American market, and the use of new technologies and online platforms to drive export sales.
Encouragingly, nearly one-third of respondents were doing business in La n America, proportionately exceeding the region’s rela vely small contribution to Australia’s overall trade picture. Access to growing markets was the biggest drawcard, while language and market access issues were the largest obstacles respondents faced in the region.
Uptake of new technologies and online channels was less promising, as more than half of respondents were not using online channels to sell their goods / services overseas. Own company websites were the most popular channel of those that did. Just over one-third plan to increase their use of online channels as well as mobile / digital technologies, but just under one-third do not.
For more information, click aibs-2018-final
And link below for the analysis of the importance of ASEAN in the ABIS report. Posted on AustCham ASEAN LinkedIn Monday 15th for those who wish to repost: https://www.austrade.gov.au/news/economic-analysis/australia-s-internationally-active-businesses-well-positioned-for-an-integrated-asean
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