The TradeStart network is an extension to Austrade's own offices and is delivered in partnership with State, Territory and local governments, industry associations and chambers of commerce.

The prime objective of Austrade's TradeStart network is to assist small and medium sized exporters to achieve long term success in international markets  It offers exporters the combined resources of Austrade and each partner organisation, providing local assistance and a direct link to Austrade's services and overseas network.


Digital Business Kits

The Digital Business Kits provide the tools and resources required to help businesses embrace the world of digital business.


Supporting Women-Led SMEs Access Global Markets by Implementing Gender-Responsive Trade Promotion Policies and Programs

Building on the outcomes of an SMEWG endorsed (and PPWE supported) multilateral workshop conducted in Manila (November 2014) and follow-up in-country visits to Chile, Indonesia, the Philippines, PNG and Vietnam (March-May 2015), this capacity building program aims to provide technical training to five economies' trade promotion agency officials, who are responsible for fostering greater export of goods and services. The program commences with a roundtable aiming to help officials identify barriers in their organisations to women accessing their services as well as considering specific actions and training to better support the needs of women-led/owned/managed SMEs. The roundtable will take place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 9-10 June 2016. A key roundtable outcome will be designing core objectives for follow-up tailor made bilateral workshops based on actual development needs of each economy. The bilateral workshops are planned for at least Peru (August 2016), Vietnam (December 2017) and PNG (by mid-2017). This work also furthers PPWE priorities.

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Digital Transformation: The Impact on SMEs and Regional Trade 

Digital transformation is redefining the way goods, services and information are produced, consumed and traded. According to the Harvard Business Review, industries ranging from finance and business services to manufacturing will be significantly disrupted by digital technologies in the near future.

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Assisting Women-Owned SMEs Access Global Markets

Aimed at helping develop or improve Trade Promotion Organisations’ services to better support women-led SMEs access global markets. Phase one of the project in 2014/15 identified the barriers women exporters face and developed a set of best practices and lessons that can be adapted to the individual circumstances of APEC economies. In 2016 and 2017, in phase two of the project, Australia is providing assistance to targeted economies to address economy specific barriers.

Best Practice Guide: Improving Business Regulation in APEC

Australia presented about the published guide of best practices to improve business regulations in APEC economies. The guide brings together lessons learned and best practices discussed at SMEWG coordinated Private Sector Development – Ease of Doing Business workshops 2007-2010.  It is available online at:

APEC Star Database Services Trade Access Requirements (STAR)

Information on the Services Trade Access Requirements, or STAR, database was presented. This was an online tool that allowed business owners in eight services sectors to obtain information about regulatory requirements in all 21 APEC economies. The services sectors covered were: financial; mining and energy; professional services; telecommunications; transport and logistics; education services, distribution; and computer and related technology services.

Promoting SME Development: Assisting Women-Owned SMEs Access the Global Market (Australia)

A workshop would be run on 25-26 November in Manila, the Philippines, aiming to enhance women-led SMEs capacity to internationalize and identify export opportunities. The workshop would identify impediments women-led SMEs face in accessing export markets and key elements of successful export development programs for women, and assist member economies enhance or develop export programs to assist women-led SMEs.

Harmonisation of Standards for the Movement of Data Across APEC Economies

The project would bring together APEC MSME representatives, National Standards Bodies (NSBs) and regulators to exchange views on the role of data interchange standards in facilitating MSMEs engagement in the global economy. It would seek to deliver recommendations that promote the role of voluntary international standards in facilitating the movement of data. The project would build trust and reduce technical barriers to trade by providing a framework for understanding and exchange of information among MSMEs and participating economies.

APEC Assisting Women-Led SMEs Access Global Markets

The project was intended to help develop or improve programs to assist women‐led SME access global markets. Having identified the barriers – even more importantly, the nature and source of those barriers – this project has developed a set of best practices and lessons that can be adapted to the individual circumstances of APEC economies