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EMDG Reform: Draft Guidelines released for consultation

Source: EMDG Austrade

The draft 2021 Export Market Development Grants (EMDG) Guidelines has been released for public consultation, the next stage in the EMDG Reform process. The EMDG Legislation Amendment Act 2020 was passed in December 2020, and the EMDG Rules were released in April 2021. The draft Guidelines are now out for public consultation until Friday 11 June 2021. Feedback on the draft Guidelines can be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The draft Guidelines provide practical guidance on how the new program will operate, including aspects such as:
 

  • Are you eligible to apply?
  • When can you apply for the 2021–22 grant round?
  • How do you apply for a grant?
  • What documentation will you need to support your application?
  • What reporting will be required?
  • When and how will grant payments be made?
  • What will be included in the grant agreement?

If applying for an EMDG grant from 1 July 2021:

To be eligible you must:

  • be a representative body or an Australian person, with ‘person’ meaning an individual, a company, a trust, or a partnership, within the definitions of the EMDG Act
  • have an annual turnover of less than $20 million
  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN). 

What products will I be able to market overseas? 

EMDG provides assistance for you to promote many different types of Australian products, including:

  • goods
  • services
  • events
  • intellectual-property
  • know-how
  • software.

Your product must have a certain connection to Australia. That connection to Australia is described in the EMDG Rules for each type of product. For example, an eligible event is one that is either held in Australia or, if the event is held online, the event is provided by an Australian person. Your product cannot be an excluded product. For example, EMDG will not fund services relating to activities or products that are unlawful. 

When will applications open?

The draft EMDG Guidelines propose grant applications open on 16 August and close on 30 November 2021. This will be confirmed following the public consultation process, which is currently underway. 

How long will the lodgement period be for grant applications?

A period of around three months is proposed in the first year with a new, simplified application process. Austrade will review and adjust for future rounds if needed. Austrade will review this process once complete and adjust it for future rounds if needed.

Can I engage someone to help me with my grant?

 The decision to engage a third party to assist with your grant application is an individual decision. Austrade will ensure the application and milestone reporting processes are as simple as possible, with clear guidance. Austrade will ensure that the application and milestone reporting processes are as simple as possible, with clear guidance. 

Will I always get the amount I apply for? 

Your grant agreement may be for less than the amount you applied for.

  • Each year the Government allocates a set amount of money for EMDG (the appropriation).
  • The EMDG program is an eligibility-based program. This means that all SMEs who apply and are eligible will receive funding.
  • As a consequence, where applications total more than the amount provided in the appropriation, Austrade must distribute that money among all applicants.
  • How that distribution is calculated will be notified to all approved applicants and on the Austrade website. 

When will I know how much my grant is for?

Once all applications have been received, Austrade will calculate the distribution of available funds for all eligible applications. Following assessment, if you are eligible, you will receive a grant agreement that will tell you how much your grant is for. Your obligation is to match, at a minimum, the dollar value of the grant monies you receive, noting:

  • If you spend more, you will not receive more grant money. The amount in your grant agreement is the maximum you will receive.
  • If you spend less, you will only receive an amount equal to the amount you contributed.
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