As the world becomes increasingly globalized and investors turn their attention to markets outside of their peripheral for growth, markets like Australia are becoming more popular and attractive. Australia is one of the world’s most stable and buoyant economies, one of the only in the world not to crumble under the 2008 financial crisis, and when compared with markets like the United Kingdom and the United States, both suffering political turmoil, Australia can provide a stable, relatively low-risk investment opportunity for those looking to invest.
Despite being thousands of miles away from key markets like the US, Australia boasts some of the world’s strongest trading relationships with markets across the globe. It has strong ties with Asia, the Americas, and Europe, and forecasts suggest that the country will continue to perform well in the coming years, climbing to become the 13th largest economy in the world by 2023. With a strong GDP and a growing middle class, there’s no reason not to make the splash and incorporate a company in Australia to maximize revenue and outpace competitors.
But what are the most rewarding and lucrative opportunities for foreign entrepreneurs looking to make their mark in Australia, and how can you benefit from expanding into the market?
Australia boasts one of the world’s most unique and dynamic tourism sectors, welcoming millions of tourists from around the world every year. The sector is relatively small when compared with services or finance, making up 3.2% of the country’s GDP in 2016/17 and accounting for around 4.9% of employment, but that relatively small figure was responsible for more than $54.7 billion in the same period. According to data, each international visitor spends around AU$4,347 on a visit to the country, and domestic tourism is another growing sector, with Australians looking to enjoy new opportunities and experiences on home turf.
Investing in the Australian tourism sector makes sound sense, not only because of changing attitudes towards experiences (with millennials and Gen Z consumers preferring to pay for experiences than physical items) but because of the region’s close proximity to fast-growing Asian economies and markets where consumers are spending more than ever on travel. As just one example, 116 million Chinese consumers are expected to get a passport in the next two years, unlocking significant opportunities for Australian businesses to market their hotels and experiences to capitalize on the Asian middle-class boom that’s fueling overseas travel.
Perhaps one of the biggest selling points for businesses expanding into Australia is that the country is investor-friendly, and whilst it has a number of legal requirements when setting up a business, Austalia is relatively laid-back when it comes to overseas investment. Therefore, companies with expertise in one sector can enter into Australia and begin trading virtually overnight, utilizing their knowledge to appease local demand and transform their fortunes.
Australia’s digital economy is on the rise, with businesses ready and willing to innovate and take their organizations to the next level through digital marketing and foreign e-commerce. It is important to note that Australia has a tech-savvy government, and all business-related tasks can be completed online, but the country still has to improve efficiency to increase productivity and yield, particularly in the manufacturing sector. There are major opportunities in research and development, digital infrastructure and more recently security, with Australian firms and government departments looking to bolster their cybersecurity. One other key industry that technology-focused businesses should consider is FinTech, with the typical Australian FinTech startup enjoying a 208% jump in revenue this 2017, but struggling to keep up with the demand for services as we head through 2019. Experienced investors can capitalize on Australia’s shortcomings to maximize profits and market share.
As demand for quality produce increases around the world, Australia is in a unique position to become one of the world’s top agriculture hubs. However, in order to compete with Asian and Southern American countries on price and yield, businesses are looking for investment to innovate in the sector and increase their food processing performance. In fact, the Aussie government has launched a campaign called ‘Australia for Agriculture 4.0,’ designed to show off Australia as an agtech and foodtech leader and encourage connections and investment from foreign nationals with experience in the sector. Indeed, Australia is already considered a leading agricultural producer, exporting 65% of its yield to other nations, but if it wants to compete on a global scale, refinements are required, and opportunities await for investors.
Thanks to the country’s abundance of natural resources and stunning climate, Australia is in a unique position both to increase energy production and reduce reliance on non-renewable resources that are polluting our environment and causing lasting damage. Thanks to its close proximity to major growth markets in Asia, Australia can serve as a hub for renewable energy in the Southern hemisphere. Combine the expertise of nations like Costa Rica, who have been able to power their countries entirely on renewable energy sources, and it is clear that Australia is ripe for development in energy, provided it has the right funding and support.
Finally, a quick nod to the medical sector. Australia is already considered a leader in medical technologies, but opportunities avail in product development in sectors like pharmaceuticals, medical devices, biotech, and topical medicines. Another area available to companies in the sector is digital health. Investors can take advantage of Australia’s research prowess and its track-record of commercial successes both in private and public healthcare and cultural and geographic ties to the Asia-Pacific region. It’s also good to note that Australia has intellectual property protection and incentives for investors but remember: finding a gap in the market before expanding is critical, particularly in the complex and competitive healthcare sector.
With Australia offering vast opportunities for foreign investors across a wide range of sectors, the hardest part is knowing where to make your mark. Whatever you decide to do, we wish you the best of luck when incorporating and expanding into Australia – enjoy the road ahead!
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