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Local businesses urged to consider exports to Sth Korea

31 July, 2007

Many local businesses have products or services that could be exported to South Korea, according to Strathfield resident, Martin Walsh, who will take up a new role in August as Austrade’s Seoul-based Senior Trade Commissioner.

“There are a large number of Cumberland/Inner West businesses run by Koreans. Statistics show that often Australian businesses run by immigrants find success exporting their products or services to the country they were born in,” Walsh said.

“Knowledge of the culture, etiquette and likes and dislikes come naturally to those that have lived in South Korea already.  Of course being able to speak the language always helps too. 

“Austrade’s Seoul team of export experts have worked hard to establish key contacts in South Korea and are continuing to increase awareness in the country about the quality of Australia’s products and services. 

“For those businesses that don’t speak the language, Austrade can help overcome the barriers with interpreters. We also offer a wide range of export services that includes financial assistance programs for eligible businesses,” he said.

South Korea is Australia’s third biggest export market and the 13th largest economy in the world.  Walsh said Austrade has identified a wide range of export opportunities for Australian businesses in South Korea.

“Consumer confidence in South Korea is at a two year high with 65 per cent of monthly income spent on this sector alone,” he said.

“Export opportunities in South Korea exist for wellbeing and lifestyle products and services ranging from personal care, to spas, aromatherapy, health foods, supplements, natural/organic foods and other products as well as pet care. 

“In addition, there is demand for auto and components for motor vehicles and information communications technology. 

“Any business in the Cumberland area considering exporting is encouraged to contact Austrade for advice and assistance on how to succeed internationally,” Walsh said.

Martin Walsh has worked for Austrade since 1985 holding senior roles in four North East Asian countries: Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei and Hong Kong.  In January 2003, Walsh returned to Australia and took up the role as Austrade’s national manager infrastructure and major projects. He makes the move back into North East Asia to head the Seoul-based Austrade team in August as Senior Trade Commissioner.

Austrade is the Australian Government’s export development agency.  Austrade administers programs that assist businesses achieve and develop export success; they are the New Exporter Development (NED) program and the Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) scheme. The NED program provides free services to exporters such as advice and information about getting into export, coaching and advice on exporting and on-ground assistance in overseas markets. The EMDG scheme is a key Australian Government financial assistance program for aspiring and current exporters.  The scheme reimburses up to 50 per cent of eligible export promotion expenditure above a threshold of $15,000.

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