Page 1631 - Week 06 - Tuesday, 7 May 2013

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connect the ACT’s large international student community to the business community to develop an international trade and investment network; and recognise, promote and develop case studies on the achievements of successful exporters.

The government understands the importance of exporting to this economy. We are roughly two per cent of the Australian economy. Australia is roughly two per cent of the world economy. We need to export in order to grow our business sector. We are backing this up with concrete programs and funding. We also acknowledge the dedicated and far-sighted work undertaken each and every day by an ever-growing number of ACT firms who are exporting and in the process helping our economy to grow and to create local jobs.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Dr Bourke.

DR BOURKE: Can the minister advise the Assembly on the focus of the trade mission to Jakarta?

MR BARR: The trade mission to Indonesia was themed around the ACT’s significant competitive strengths in the areas of international education, knowledge-intensive business services, information and communications technology and expertise in public sector administration. Our efforts were focused in industries where the territory excels.

On the trip I was joined by 15 ACT companies and the ACT’s significant international education providers, including the ANU, the University of Canberra, the Australian Catholic University and the Canberra Institute of Technology.

A priority of the trade mission was to build the connections between Canberra and Jakarta and to help lay the groundwork for future growth and cooperation. The chance for territory businesses and education providers to have face-to-face meetings and to attend events with their counterparts in Indonesia was very valuable for those businesses. Not only are there more potential opportunities now being pursued as a result of this particular visit but also the trade mission was an important part of building longer term connections that will enable business opportunities into the future.

Indonesia is our fourth largest trading partner in ASEAN and the 12th largest trading partner overall. Indonesian investment in Australia is on the rise—an 11 per cent increase in recent times, to nearly half a billion dollars a year. I look forward to the ACT continuing its engagement with Indonesia and specifically with Jakarta.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Ms Berry.

MS BERRY: Can the minister expand on the government’s focus on these export markets in the territory for the next 12 months.

MR BARR: The government’s trade development strategy aims to showcase capability in relevant international markets where we have a comparative strength. This means that we will focus our efforts on markets where there is a strong demand

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