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Tuesday, 22 June 2010 10:15

NBN boosts Australia's profile in global ICT market


The National Broadband Network is creating enormous interest among overseas ICT companies, says Austrade, which is planning an ICT portal to showcase Australia's capabilities.

Janelle Casey, Austrade's global leader, ICT, Health and Biotech, told ExchangeDaily that, after Austrade's participation in a recent ICT showcase in Tokyo, it had receive 60 enquiries from Japanese companies. "The last time we were there [before the NBN] there was zero interest," she said.

She added: "At the moment I am trying to develop marketing and capability collateral. I am trying to get an NBN information pack together. All the overseas countries are very curious about what is happening in Australia. So it's better to get some consolidated information out there."

This is being undertaken with input from DBCDE, NBN Co and each state government's NBN Task Force. Also playing a key role is COMICTA, the Committee for Marketing ICT Australia. "It is a way to share information between the states, industry associations and the Federal Government," Casey said. "We have just produced and overview on R&D infrastructure and we used COMICTA to pull everything together."

Casey is also planning to use COMICTA to develop a web portal as a showcase for Australia's ICT capabilities, along the lines of one already operating for health and biotech that features some 300 companies.

"We will use COMICTA to gather the information from the states. We will segment the companies into specific sectors, and send it to all overseas Austrade and state government offices to promote Australian companies that are looking for partners."

ICT portal planned
She estimated the project would take only a few weeks, saying: "We have the structure in place because we did this for health and biotech.

Casey said that Austrade was already looking beyond promoting the NBN itself to overseas companies interested in the Australian market, and starting to focus on promoting opportunities in applications that will run over the NBN. "We are working very closely with the CSIRO and NICTA on this."

The Victorian Government has made a major investment in the NBN application space with its $50m foundation funding for the Institute for Broadband Enabled Society (IBES) at Melbourne University.

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