News

Public Affairs central to success for foreign companies in Aus market

Well thought out public affairs strategies are key to succeeding in the Australian market.

By Taylee Lewis

Australia continues to look to foreign companies to support growth in industries from infrastructure and telecommunications to energy and defence, making it essential for firms to engage in a comprehensive public affairs campaign to maximise chances of success.

Companies that are able to communicate the benefit they bring to the Australian market – be it the creation of jobs or capital to fund new industries – will be better placed to win contracts and operate effectively over the long-term.

The key purpose of any public affairs campaign is to build support, trust and credibility amongst stakeholders – the general public, media, community groups, and government.

Japanese-owned firm Inpex, which invested heavily into the Northern Territory’s resource sector, succeeded in winning stakeholder support. The $55 billion investment was widely praised, marked as essential to the economic development of the territory.

There are, however, cases of public hostility towards foreign investment that could have been diffused through a public affairs strategy. A recent high-profile example being community opposition to Indian-owned company Adani funding the Carmichael coal mining project.

For foreign companies assessing whether to enter the Australian market, a public affairs and stakeholder relations campaign needs to be built into a market entrance strategy.

Engaging a public affairs agency specialised in assisting foreign companies in the Australian market will provide support across all phases of market entrance, ensuring interest groups are engaged and opportunities for commercial growth maximised.

Dec 12, 2018