Overseas offices to
A review of South Australia’s overseas trade offices has recommended that all but one be closed.
close their doors
Premier, Jay Weatherill said the Review of South Australia’s Overseas Representation found the State’s overseas offices in their current form were not performing well enough and a new approach was needed that shifted the focus from trade to investment.
Mr Weatherill said the closures were recommended in favour of an overhauled international strategy.
“South Australia currently has trade offices in Shanghai, Jinan, Hong Kong, Chennai, Singapore, Ho Chi Minh City, Dubai and Santiago,” Mr Weatherill said.
“The Government also has an Agent-General in London, whose office was not included in the review.”
He said the review found the number of overseas offices had peaked at 12 in the 1990s when raising awareness of export opportunities was a priority but since then there had been significant shifts in the global and national economy, necessitating a review of the format.
“The report recommends closing all but the office in Jinan, Shandong Province, which has a sister State relationship with SA,” Mr Weatherill said.
“It also recommends a focus on China and India, highlighting the Agent General’s office in London as a good model for how representation in India and China may work.”
He said the Government wanted to attract people, investment and ideas to South Australia.
“This review suggests we need to change our focus to ensure we can compete effectively,” he said.
“We are already working towards these aims, with the State Government recently releasing plans for specific China and India strategies.
“The creation of the Department for Manufacturing, Innovation, Trade, Resources and Energy also reflected a change in focus.”
Mr Weatherill said the report showed there was more work to be done and he would consider its findings with a view to a new international strategy.
The full report can be accessed at this PS News link.
Edition 164, 3 May 2012