Agri-Business Expansion Initiative

The Australian Government is investing $72.7 million to help Australian agribusinesses expand their export markets in 2021 as part of the Agri-Business Expansion Initiative.

Key elements of the initiative include new one-on-one exporter support services, greater access to market intelligence, and matched grants for government and industry associations to work together on market expansion.

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Short-term Agricultural Counsellors

  • This initiative will fund an additional three short-term Agriculture Counsellors to rapidly build targeted relationships and ensure a sharp focus on actions necessary to grow agricultural exports, complementing the work of our existing network of 22 agriculture counsellors.
  • Counsellors will enable technical market access wins by managing government and industry relationships, ensuring targeted technical inputs, reporting market intelligence, and navigating sensitivities around market access requests. The Counsellors will also complement the technical analysis and negotiations undertaken by Canberra-based scientists and policy negotiators. 
  • Counsellors will be deployed where industry identifies market access priorities with the greatest commercial prospects. This is likely to include deployment to high-growth markets and where the Australian Government has recently concluded free trade agreements.


  • This initiative will provide $3.5 million over the next 18 months.
    • 3 new Agriculture Counsellors
    • Counsellors will undertake an average of 2 deployments per year.
    • Deployments will vary depending on the objectives identified by the joint industry and government panel overseeing the implementation of this package.

Further information please contact:
Australian Trade and Investment Commission - Export Enquiries

Boosting scientific and technical capacity

  • This initiative will accelerate the negotiation of technical agreements by boosting our scientific and technical capacity.
  • Over the next eighteen months, we will engage new scientists to progress market access priorities, reducing the time required to negotiate new and improved access for Australian producers.
    • The negotiation of technical access conditions to address food safety, animal health and biosecurity protocols, is a pre-requisite for increased trade. This package will ensure that Australian agricultural producers have favourable access to overseas markets.
  • We will also mobilise Australia’s scientific expertise to undertake technical cooperation activities with our trading partners. These activities will help to overcome technical constraints that currently impede mutually beneficial two-way trade.
  • Technical partnerships that share Australia’s expertise, such as hosting and funding technical forums and engaging specialist consultants, builds relationships between Australia and our trading partners and improves outcomes for both countries.


  • This initiative will provide $6.8 million over the next 18 months.
  • Funding for the new scientist positions will go to the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment (the department). The department pursues industry access priorities with our trading partners.
  • Funding for technical cooperation activities will utilise expertise from government and industry.
  • Activities will be prioritised in consultation with industry to ensure the greatest benefit to Australian agricultural producers.

Expansion of the ATMAC program

  • The existing Agricultural Trade and Market Access Cooperation (ATMAC) will be expanded and modified to enable the Government to enter into strategic partnerships with industry.
  • The Government will develop strategic partnerships with industry to support trade expansion and diversification. Potential grants will be assessed by an industry/Government panel, with those sectors most affected by trade disruptions targeted for assistance
  • A portion of the ATMAC grants will be allocated to investments that support trade expansion, along with industry specific international marketing and promotion plans, and activities like trade missions to activate those plans.
  • Other activities eligible for support include, but are not limited to: research and development; training and education; information exchange; feasibility studies; competitor analyses or sector or market analyses; export strategy development; targeted relationship development; capital works that support improved market diversification; and influencing the evolution or adoption of international standards and protocols.
  • Proposals will be required to demonstrate broad support across the relevant industry stakeholders and include a co-contribution, financial and/or in-kind. The nature of the arrangements will vary depending on the sector, export markets and diversification activities being targeted.


  • This initiative will make an extra $18.4 million in grant funding available to industry associations over the next two years.
  • Industry associations, including peak bodies are eligible to apply for ATMAC funding. To be eligible to receive a grant, the association must represent a range of relevant industry beneficiaries and provide a significant co-contribution, financial and/or in-kind, proportionate to the size of the grant.

Further information please contact:

Surge support for market expansion

  • Australia’s agriculture export sectors need to begin reducing market concentration risks by engaging in new markets while also defending their presence in established markets.
  • Under this package, the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade) will significantly expand its services to agri-food exporters to support their growth and expansion into new markets.
  • Scaling up Austrade’s Excelerate services will see intensive, one-on-one services and customised advice provided to around 800 additional agri-food exporters each year, with more key account managers in Australia and additional business development managers in priority international markets.
  • Austrade will also work in partnership with industry to deliver large-scale targeted market entry services to around 1,500 additional agri-food exporters each year, including through:
    • Briefings and workshops on market entry strategies,
    • Delivering commercially actionable market insights,
    • In-market support through targeted trade events and missions (when appropriate).
    • Leveraging industry programs under the expanded ATMAC grants.
  • Providing assistance, with co-contributions from industry, means growth and expansion can occur more rapidly, with fewer costly missteps by business.


  • The Agribusiness Expansion Initiative provides $42.9 million to Austrade to scale up support to over 2,000 agri-food exporters each year through Austrade’s services. Austrade will also work with industry bodies to deliver targeted advice and trade missions (where possible) to help exporters grow in existing and new markets. 

Further information please contact:
Australian Trade and Investment Commission - Export Enquiries

Last reviewed: 23 December 2020
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