This audit would assess Austrade’s effectiveness in supporting an expansion in the export of Australian services and in the administration of the Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) scheme.

The services sector generates over 70 per cent of Australia’s GDP and employs four out of every five Australians, yet trade in services accounted for only 22.3 per cent of Australia’s total trade in calendar year 2018. In 2017, Austrade published a strategy to address this, with a particular focus on education, tourism and financial services.

The audit would also examine the effectiveness of Austrade’s activities in this regard, and would also examine Austrade’s administration of the EMDG scheme, which provides financial assistance to Australian small to medium-sized businesses to support international marketing and promotion activities. A total of $526.4 million has been awarded in grants over the four years to 2018–19.