Exporters of goods and services from the Pacific Islands were invited last month to share their views on business confidence, the investment climate and export trends. The Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade in collaboration with Pacific Islands Trade & Invest, the trade and investment arm of the Pacific Islands Forum Secretariat, conducted this first ever export survey of its kind in the region. Service based businesses make up a significant proportion of regional exports. Tourism operators, accommodation providers, the legal and financial sector, as well as training and education providers were all encouraged to participate in the online survey, alongside the better known exporters of goods and manufactured products. The objective of the research was to provide a greater understanding of the diversity of industry in the region; the size, shape, as well as opportunities and challenges – particularly with regard to international trade. The survey also essayed to examine the future outlook and highlight changes in overseas demand. Such a study has never been conducted in the region and is expected to provide a much-needed assessment of the region’s important and productive export sectors. The results of the survey, which has since concluded, will be confidential and will only be shared in aggregate. They will be analysed and the executive summary will be available to all participants and circulated widely.
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