Asialink and Australian Industry Group Survey
Engaging Asia: Getting it right for Australian businessA major new Asialink / Australia Industry Group survey, citing gaps in expertise on Asia at the highest levels of Australian industry, finds more than half of Australian businesses currently operating in Asia have little board and senior management experience of Asia and/or Asia skills or languages.
The survey highlights that the vital need for Australia to make a greater national investment in Asia studies at school and to provide Asia skills development in the workforce.
Watch a video report from the Australia Network's Business Today program.
Ai Group and Asialink conducted a joint survey of Ai Group members during 2010 to better understand attitudes towards and knowledge about Asia among Australian businesses. The aim was to explore the extent to which Australian business is expanding into Asia and whether we have the skills and capacity to support this growth.
Australia’s trade performance in Asia is extraordinarily strong, and Australia's top four export markets are all in Asia.
Businesses have indicated that the real test of an understanding of the Asian region, and really knowing what the opportunities are, is when companies put people and money there – when they put people on the ground.
- The survey reveals Asia is considered important to business success and that business believes the future prospects are good
- Of responding businesses, whether operating in Asia or not, 74% indicated an interest in expanding into the region, with almost 50% actively planning expansion within 12 months
- Of businesses currently doing business with or in Asia, more than half rated at least one of their Asian operations as ‘highly important’ or ‘extremely important’ to their overall success
- China features prominently in future business expansion plans, but so too do 12 other Asian economies (including Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, India, Vietnam and Thailand)
- 55% say they will employ more staff to support this planned expansion
Importance of skills and experience
- The survey finds more than half of Australian businesses currently operating in Asia have little board and senior management experience of Asia and/or Asia skills or languages.
- The report reveals that understanding the local culture, the legal and political hurdles, having local knowledge, are also significant factors contributing to business success.
Download Report [pdf, 3mb, 27 pages]