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Expanding horizons: Access Asia business grants open for WA enterprises


The Cook Government’s Access Asia Business Grants offer up to $30,000 for SMEs in Western Australia to explore new opportunities in Asian markets, aiming to bolster exports and local job creation.

The Cook Government has officially launched the sixth round of the Access Asia Business Grants (AABG) program, signaling a continued commitment to fostering international trade and economic diversification in Western Australia. This initiative, a cornerstone of the state’s Asian Engagement Strategy 2019-2030, is designed to support small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and organisations in their efforts to penetrate new markets within Asia.

With a total funding pool of $360,000 for this round, the AABG program offers individual grants of up to $30,000. These grants are intended to assist recipients in various activities essential for international market expansion, including but not limited to, scoping new supply chains, developing export plans, acquiring in-market intelligence, and crafting targeted marketing materials for Asian consumers.

Since its launch in 2019, the AABG program has disbursed approximately $1.4 million across 80 local businesses and organizations, aiding them in accessing lucrative Asian markets. This support aligns with Western Australia’s broader economic goals, as outlined in the Diversify WA strategy, by emphasizing growth in priority sectors such as energy, tourism, international education, defence industries, mining and METS (mining equipment, technology and services), space industries, health and medical life sciences, and primary industries.

Applicants looking to secure funding must demonstrate a co-cash contribution at a minimum 20:80 ratio, with the applicant supplying at least 20% of the project’s cost and the state government covering the remainder. This requirement underscores the program’s emphasis on collaborative investment in the future of Western Australia’s economic engagement with Asia.

Premier Roger Cook underscored the importance of the AABG program in the state’s economic strategy, stating, “Supporting local businesses to expand is an important part of our plan to create local jobs and diversify our economy.” He highlighted the success of the program in enabling 80 local enterprises and organizations to explore Asian markets since 2019, urging potential applicants to seize this opportunity to grow their international footprint.

The closing date for applications is set for 15 March 2024, offering a timely opportunity for Western Australian businesses to advance their international market engagement strategies.

As the tourism industry seeks to rebound and flourish post-pandemic, initiatives like the AABG are crucial for ensuring that Western Australian tourism operators are well-positioned to capitalize on the growing interest and demand from Asian travelers, ultimately contributing to the state’s economic prosperity and cultural exchange.

Co-Founder & Managing Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.