Mr Robb said the state and territory awards open successively from today, with those winners progressing to become finalists vying for national titles, to be announced during a gala event at the end of the year.
“Participation in the Australian Export Awards provides well-deserved public recognition for significant exporting achievements,” Mr Robb said.
“The awards honour businesses that are helping maintain Australia’s reputation for quality and innovation; they provide valuable endorsement for winners when approaching new markets overseas.”
Finalists in 12 award categories will be judged on the strength of their international growth, innovation, marketing and financial strategies.
Last year’s 74 national finalists generated more than $3.1 billion in export sales in 2013–14 and employed more than 41,000 people.
“Participants come from all over Australia and represent a wide range of industries from agribusiness and the resources sector to bio-technology, manufacturing, and IT,” Mr Robb said.
“They come in all shapes and sizes, but the one thing they have in common is the enormous contribution they make to the local economy, where their export success is helping drive jobs, growth and prosperity for their community.
“It’s an exciting time for Australian exporters, particularly those that are making the most of the Free Trade Agreements we’ve secured with some of the biggest economies in Asia, and I look forward to what I expect will be yet another year of outstanding award winners,” he said.
Visit www.exportawards.gov.au for more information.