New research revealed that Australia’s economic relations with Asia are diversifying into new industries, such as professional, scientific, and technical services, wholesale trade, as well as transferring market knowledge and technologies from advanced Asian economies, such as China, Japan, and South Korea
“The cliché of migrant entrepreneurs as outsiders with low formal qualifications and poor language skills has given way to generational change.” said the report’s author Dr. Wei Li.
Commonwealth Bank Australia and The University of Sydney Business School Industry Partnership Grants sponsored an online nationwide survey to learn about the characteristics of Asian-Australian businesses in Australia and how they planned to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. Seventy-two entrepreneurs responded and completed the survey.
Nearly one-third of the sample was under the age of 40, while another third were in their 40s. All of the questioned entrepreneurs had at least one tertiary qualification, either from local or overseas.
It was notable that before launching their own firm, the majority had earned corporate work experience in professional or managerial positions.
The study also found that younger Asian-Australian enterprises operate in mainstream markets and pursue business in new industries and across local, national, and regional borders.
In terms of sales, 37% reported yearly revenue of less than AUD 2 million, 31% between AUD 2 million and 10 million, and 32% of the respondents above AUD 10 million.
The majority of participants have fewer than 20 employees, while 19% employ between 20 and 49 staff members.
Weekly interaction with the members of their family networks for business purposes is being done by 74% of the Asian-Australian entrepreneurs.
According to the survey, the main motivations for fostering ties with Asian regions are to save money, gain access to resources, expand into new geographic markets, and gain access to innovation.
More than 46% of the businesses had been in operation for less than 10 years, 33% for 10 to 20 years, and 21% for more than 20 years.
Ultimately, the survey revealed that Australia is more deeply linked to Asian value chains compared to North American or European value networks.
“Our business links with Asia are driven by the more complex Asia-Pacific manufacturing value chains but is also expanding into new industries,” said Dr. Li. “These value chains in the Asia-Pacific region are stepping stones for Australian exports into global markets.”