Asian Engagement Strategy will drive jobs, trade, investment and prosperity for generations of Western Australians

by WA Government News | Sep 04, 2019
  • WA's first Asian Engagement Strategy details McGowan Government's exciting vision to diversify the State's economy, attract investment and create jobs
  • By 2030, Asia will represent 60 per cent of the world's middle class
  • Strategy complements Diversify WA - WA's economic development framework 

Western Australia's first Asian Engagement Strategy will support the relationships, knowledge and skills necessary to grow trade and investment with Asian markets, diversifying and expanding the State's economy and creating jobs.

The strategy, a McGowan Government election promise, recognises the rise of the Asian region as the biggest economic, social and cultural opportunity for WA this century.

The strategy sets a 2030 timeframe for achieving increased trade and investment, a diversified economy through the development of the State's priority industry sectors and the development of an Asian-capable workforce.

It will inform the delivery of results in four areas:

  • Maximising investment and trade opportunities;
  • Supporting Asia literacy and capability with a commitment to Asian language capabilities, socio-cultural and institutional literacy that is required for long-term engagement and success in Asian markets;
  • Enhancing people-to-people links between WA and Asian nations and working closely with the State's Asian community; and
  • Supporting business and communities by providing direct advice and access to business and trade networks. 

The strategy identifies the steps WA will take to deepen its connections with Asia and diversify the State's economy, with a clear focus on its priority sectors.

To support activation of the strategy, the State Government has also launched a new grant program - Access Asia.

Access Asia targets SMEs to access a range of activities such as marketing expenses in target markets, commissioning of in-market research on trade and investment opportunities, or participation in a recognised trade event, to facilitate their entry into an Asian market.

The $1.2 million fund delivers another McGowan Government election pledge in the Asian Engagement portfolio.

To read the strategy online, visit after 2pm today (August 30).

Comments attributed to Asian Engagement Minister Peter Tinley:

"Asia currently represents 42 per cent of the world's economy, and is growing rapidly. By 2050, the region directly to WA's north will represent more than half the global economy.

"WA's future prosperity is deeply connected to its ability to capitalise on its relationship with Asia.

"The once in a lifetime opportunity to rise with Asia will only be fully realised through provision of the strategic leadership and essential frameworks necessary to delivering this promise.

"Our geographic proximity and longstanding relationships with Asia are unequalled, and our globally competitive and innovative economy is ready to deliver.

"This new strategy will ensure WA leverages the enormous opportunities to diversify our economy and create jobs as well as reap the many social and cultural benefits that will come with deeper relationships with Asia.

"The strategy is also highly collaborative, and the State Government will support and consult WA businesses to increase their skills and capacity to trade with Asia.

"By developing deeper links and better understanding of the economic drivers of each Asian market, we will identify and deliver greater trade and investment for WA businesses and industries."

Minister's office - 6552 5300

Key Asia trade statistics:

  • WA's merchandise exports to Asia is greater than all other Australian States and Territories combined (61 per cent of total trade in 2018-19);
  • WA's merchandise exports to Asia increased from $24 billion to $129 billion between 2004-18;
  • Between 2004-18, 70 per cent of WA's increase in exports was based on the export of iron ore and petroleum to China and Japan;
  • From 2010-18, total business investment into WA was more than $500 billion;
  • The combined GDP of Asia's 11 biggest economies is projected to grow from US$22 trillion in 2016 to US$109 trillion in 2050, at which point Asia will account for more than half the global economy;
  • Most of the world's megacities, with populations more than 10 million, are in Asia;
  • More than half the world's population lives in Asia; and
  • Asia will comprise 60 per cent of the world's middle-class citizens by 2030.

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