Exporting to Australia
New opportunities for partnership
The UK and Australia have signalled their intent to achieve a modern and ambitious new trade deal by signing an Agreement in Principle. It will deliver a range of benefits, including seeing tariffs cut on iconic British exports like whisky and cars, opening up opportunities for service providers, and creating a new gold standard for digital trade. The agreement, combined with Australia’s stable institutions, sophisticated financial systems and good governance, make it a very attractive market for UK companies.
Ideal test market
Australia is a sophisticated, wealthy and tech-savvy market. Its 25 million people, including one million Britons (Australian government, 2018), make it an ideal place to test and develop new products or services. Around three-fifths of the total population live in Australia’s 4 largest cities, making it easy to prioritise where to launch your product or service.
Opportunities for exporters
Australia is the UK's 14th largest export market, and trade between the UK and Australia totalled £14.5 billion in the four quarters to the end of Q3 2020 (ONS, 2020). Opportunities exist for UK companies across a wide range of sectors, including financial services and fintech, technology, cyber security and infrastructure.
Financial services and fintech
The UK and Australia signed a Fintech Bridge agreement in 2018, which simplifies access for UK companies and provides a framework to harmonise fintech policies. Both governments have committed to providing support for UK fintech firms selling products and services in Australia.
The UK and Australia have also agreed to co-operate on developing their respective open banking regimes. This is an important step towards improving market access for new third-party providers of financial services.
Demand for UK expertise
The UK is recognised as the world-leading fintech hub and a source of expertise in Australia. A number of UK companies have already achieved success in Australia, including Revolut, Transferwise, TrueLayer and Recordsure.
Digital transformation of government organisations and businesses is driving demand. There are opportunities in ICT, the ‘internet of things’ (IoT), big data, artificial intelligence (AI), automation, blockchain, systems integration, cloud computing, smart tech, cleantech and agritech.
Strong tech ecosystem
Australia is ranked 1st globally for technological readiness (Economist Intelligence Unit, 2018). Its business-friendly environment and willingness to innovate make it an attractive destination for UK tech companies seeking to sell their services or form partnerships with Australian companies.
Highly skilled workforce
Australia can offer UK companies a smart, multicultural workforce with an enterprising mindset and the skills to promote innovation and grow international business.
Infrastructure and smart cities
Australian rail projects align strongly with UK expertise. There is demand for technologically advanced systems, products and services in areas such as consulting, engineering design, system and power engineering, signalling, digital systems, construction equipment, operational products, project management and delivery. A proposed memorandum of understanding between the Rail Industry Association and the Australasian Rail Association will also open up opportunities.
Construction of Western Sydney International Airport is now underway. Set to open in 2026, the airport is expected to generate economic activity, provide employment opportunities and meet Sydney's growing aviation needs. There is high demand for international expertise across the airport construction supply chain.
Urban regeneration and smart cities
Despite the impact of the pandemic, Australia’s population is projected to grow considerably over the coming decades, transforming cities in the eastern states and spurring demand for high density and affordable housing developments and urban regeneration. UK experience in urban planning and the roll out of smart technology, architecture and design, consulting, construction, project management and delivery would be welcomed.
Ready pool of online buyers
The majority of Australian consumers are now shopping online, and e-commerce sales are expected to continue to grow exponentially.
New marketplaces have unlocked more opportunities for UK retailers to sell online in Australia, including Amazon Australia and Catch.com.au.
High demand for UK brands
UK brands are highly regarded in Australia and Australian consumers have a strong recognition of and appetite for UK brands that are of high quality, unique and exclusive to the UK.
High demand for cyber technology
In 2020, Australia spent £3.1 billion on cyber security from local and international providers, a figure projected to increase to £4.3 billion by 2024 (Australian Cyber Security Growth Network, 2021). Australia’s 2020 Cyber Security Strategy is backed by a £919 million federal funding envelope (Cyber Enhanced Situational Awareness Response Package) to increase cyber security preparedness, unlocking opportunities for UK companies.
Increased government funding and investment
The Australian Defence Department investment in IT and cyber will reach £11 billion over the next decade as part of its Force Structure Plan. State governments are also adopting cyber capability, deploying its own Digital Restart Funds and Digital Future Now initiatives to secure existing systems and deploy new technology.
Private sector growth opportunities
Australia presents opportunities for cyber integration across healthcare, advanced manufacturing, supply chain, critical national infrastructure, oil and gas, and financial and professional. Collaboration in the sector is also high with many start-ups partnering on product and service delivery solutions.