In order to help South West businesses take advantage of export opportunities the Bunbury Geographe Economic Alliance will be holding a Trade and Export Forum on November 7 at Maker + Co.
The event will be the first in a series to educate and link business owners to potential export customers throughout Asia.
Bunbury Geographe Economic Alliance chief executive officer Chris McNamara said it was a unified approach with organisations working together to support the region’s business community.
“We’ve got a lot of products, skills and services here that we should be able to take advantage of,” he said.
“There is potential exporters out there that we hope this forum will flush out and find out who’s out there and there is a range of skills with government and non-government together and some funding for people to be able to access to get export ready and to be culturally ready.
“This is the first in a series moving forward, particularly for the China market because over the last three years there’s been a dramatic increase of visitors coming to the region and a lot of interest wanting to do trade with us.”
Mr McNamara has lived and worked in Asia and said businesses needed to be ready to avoid getting left behind and to take advantage of opportunities when the arise.
“I know that there is huge potential for what we have to offer from the South West for the market there,” he said.
“They’re currently buying elsewhere and the prices they’re getting, if people knew here what is available and how to get it there, they’d be getting themselves ready.”
Mr McNamara said there was a market for agribusiness, wine, high-end food products, manufacturing and innovation.
“We need to know who is out there and who is potentially ready to take advantage of that and we need to link the opportunities with the people who can make it happen,” he said.
“That’s why we’re running the forum to show what help is available from government and others, who’s out there and match the two together.
“We’re at the grass-roots level saying how do we get this region ready to take advantage of what’s happening.”
Mr McNamara said someone could have a fantastic product or service and muck it up because they were not culturally ready, because they don’t know how to hand out a business card.
“Doing business in Asia is totally different to doing business here, it’s all about trust, it’s about building that up but you’ve got to start somewhere,” he said.
For more information contact 9792 7134 or visit bwea.com.au.