Federal Government support for tourism businesses
Australian Small Business Advisory Service (ASBAS) Digital Solutions
ASBAS Digital Solutions offers small businesses throughout metropolitan and regional Australia low cost, high quality advice on a range of digital solutions to meet their business needs. Services include:
- Websites and selling online
- Social media and digital marketing
- Using small business software
- Online security and privacy
To be eligible to recieve assistance you must have 19 or less Full Time Equivalent (FTE) employees.
The Entrepreneurs' Programme is the Australian Government’s flagship initiative for business competitiveness and productivity. The Tourism Partnerships section provides groups of tourism businesses in northern Australia with access to an experienced Business Facilitator for 12 months. Individual tourism businesses can also access services through the Entrepreneurs' Programme, such as a Business Evaluation. The guidelines for the Business Growth Grants services have recently changed. Businesses should review the Business Management – Grant opportunity guidelines before applying.
Indigenous Business Sector Strategy
The Indigenous Business Sector Strategy is the Government’s ten-year plan to help more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people build sustainable businesses that will support themselves, their families and their communities. The Strategy has four pillars: better access to business support, improved capital access, stronger networks, and improved access to data. The following actions will be rolled out in the first three years of the Strategy:
- Three indigenous Business Hubs will be anchored to major cities. The Hubs will be a one-stop-shop to access better business advice, support, and connections they need at any point in their business journey. In addition, three Project Support Hubs will be established to provide support to Indigenous businesses looking to take advantage of major infrastructure or service delivery projects.
- Pilot an Indigenous Entrepreneurs Capital Scheme to unlock a wider range of finance and capital products for Indigenous businesses who are looking to transition to mainstream banking.
- Double the microfinance footprint across Australia to support more entrepreneurial activity and economic development in regional and remote locations.
- Increase funding for networks to allow them to strengthen their links with mainstream businesses, industy bodies and education providers and to better link emerging businesses to link them to key support services.
- Fund support for Indigenous businesses looking to enter into joint ventures to ensure that key commercial and legal issues are well understood and negotiated.
- Increase opportunities for Indigenous businesses to build stronger connections with Commonwealth buyers by funding improvements to Supply Nation’s Indigenous Business Direct and funding more Meet Commonwealth buyers events.
- Invest in a digital platform that will help Indigenous businesses navigate the support system.
- Invest in high quality data collection and evaluation so that we can track what works and tailor our investment.
Business Development and Assistance Program
Indigenous Business Australia (IBA) provides assistance to Indigenous Australians to acquire establish and grow their business. Under the Business Development and Assistance Programme, IBA delivers business and capital support to Indigenous Australians who are starting up, or growing, their businesses. IBA can provide business support services, concessional finance and range of other products including Start Up Packages, Procurement Loans and Performance Bonds. For more information, go to www.iba.gov.au.
Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) scheme
A key Australian Government financial assistance program for aspiring and current exporters. Administered by Austrade, the scheme supports a wide range of industry sectors and products, including inbound tourism and the export of intellectual property and know-how outside Australia. The EMDG scheme:
- Encourages small and medium sized Australian businesses to develop export markets
- Reimburses up to 50% of eligible export promotion expenses above $5,000 provided that the total expenses are at least $15,000
- Provides up to eight grants to each eligible applicant
- In April 2019, the Federal Government announced an increase in funding for the Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) scheme. Funding for the scheme will increase by $60 million over three years from 2019–20.
- In October 2019, the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Senator the Hon Simon Birmingham, announced Ms Anna Fisher will undertake a review of the Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) scheme and Australian Government financial assistance to SME exporters. For further information, visit: https://www.austrade.gov.au/australian/export/export-grants/review
Pacific Labour Scheme
The Pacific Labour Scheme enables citizens of select Pacific island countries to take up low and semi-skilled work opportunities in rural and regional Australia for up to three years. Through these opportunities Pacific island workers will earn income and develop skills which will benefit their families and communities. Administered by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Pacific Labour Scheme will help fill labour gaps in Australia’s towns and on our farms, boosting economic activity and competitiveness in rural and regional Australia. Employers can check if they’re eligible online.
Export Finance Australia
Export Finance Australia is the Australian Government’s export credit agency and provides loans and guarantees to Australian export-related businesses when their bank may be unable to help. If you're a business that provides tourism services directly, or through the supply chain, to international tourists and you need finance to help you grow the international side of your business, Export Finance Australia can help. To find out more download Export Finance Australia's free eBook, Financing your international tourism business.
Drought Communities Program
The extension of the Drought Communities Programme provides funding of $250 million to eligible councils for drought-affected regions of Australia. The program supports local community infrastructure and other drought relief projects for communities impacted by drought. Eligible councils listed and invited by the Minister to apply are entitled to up to $1 million for local community infrastructure and other drought relief projects.