Saturday, September 10th, 2011 - AIIA:
The launch of South Australia’s new Strategic Plan by Premier Mike Rann last night has set a benchmark for Australian States and Territories seeking to establish leading economies based on the intelligent application of technology, according the Australian Information Industry Association.

The SA Strategic Plan now includes a target of increasing the proportion of businesses that receive orders online from 24 per cent today to 40 per cent in 2014, with a commitment to continued increases up to 2020.

“Recognising e-commerce at the highest level of strategic planning in South Australia is an important development in economic positioning,” said AIIA CEO Suzanne Campbell. “AIIA calls on all Australian governments to adopt this approach to the development of the digital economy.”

“Raising the online presence of businesses is an exemplary way to diversify the economy, maximise competitiveness, grow revenues and increase productivity in South Australia,” Suzanne said.

The inclusion of the e-commerce target in South Australia’s State Plan follows the Federal Government’s recently announced goal of placing Australia in the top 5 OECD countries in the world by the percentage of businesses online.

“It is a very smart move for South Australia to get ahead of the curve. States that lead take-up will have a leading share of the rewards,” said Suzanne. “Online spending is growing rapidly. That is where customers are – that is where Australian businesses need to be.”

Past studies by IBM have estimated that up to 92 percent of Australian consumers want to use websites to compare prices. PayPal estimates that Australian online retail spending will rise from $24 billion in 2009 to $33 billion in 2012; yet, 40 percent of spending goes overseas compared to only 10 percent in the United States.

“Online business presence not only opens up new markets locally, within Australia and overseas, it also provides cheaper and more effective advertising as consumers increasingly turn to online services to research their spending.”

“Taking your business online means you don’t have to be located in a main-street urban area to compete. You can be anywhere, and you can employ the best staff by allowing them to work remotely. It opens up a huge range of options for small business in Australia,” according to Suzanne.

AIIA also called on government to take similar measures to ensure citizen and consumer confidence online, and to lead by example through internet-based initiatives ranging from service delivery to citizen consultation.

“AIIA welcomes opportunities to partner with government and the business sector to maximise the opportunities presented by the digital economy in Australia,” Suzanne concluded.

ENDS

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AIIA:


The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) is the nation’s peak industry body for the technology sector. AIIA sets the strategic direction of the industry, influences public policy and provides members with productivity tools, advisory services and market intelligence to accelerate their business growth.

AIIA member companies employ 100,000 Australians, generate combined annual revenues of more than $40 billion and export more than $2 billion in goods and services each year.
Rhett Somers, Communication Manager, Australian Information Industry Association
P: 02 6281 9413
W: www.aiia.com.au

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