Queensland oil and gas SMEs are being invited to join a new program that provides mentoring, workshops and financial support to help local firms enter international markets.

The Smart Australia: Take Local Global program is an initiative of National Energy Resources Australia (NERA), and will also include the opportunity to attend the Gastech Exhibition and Conference in Spain in September this year.

NERA is partnering with TIQ for the Queensland roll-out of the program, which launched on 8 March in Brisbane.

NERA CEO Miranda Taylor said the organisation was well placed to connect small businesses with international growth opportunities.

‘NERA recognises significant value in the services and technologies being developed by local small businesses and entrepreneurs,’ Ms Taylor said.

‘Many home-grown innovative and entrepreneurial enterprises seek access to international markets … but without strategic support and guidance, this can be a challenging and complex task.

‘With Australia being the world’s second largest exporter of liquefied natural gas (LNG), NERA believes encouraging and promoting our innovative small businesses and entrepreneurs will have significant benefits for the sector, as well as for the Australian economy.’

The new program will involve workshops and mentoring for oil and gas SMEs in Brisbane and Perth, plus 20 subsidies of $5,000 each to help selected firms attend Gastech in Barcelona.

Participating companies will also be expected to make a financial contribution, which will vary depending on whether firms choose to attend Gastech, and whether they are successful in applying for a subsidy.

The Brisbane workshops will run during July and August, covering topics such as marketing, cultural sensitivity, and tax and legal requirements in overseas markets.

Participating companies will then have the option of travelling to Spain, where NERA will coordinate Australia’s first-ever Gastech pavilion and delegation.

NERA is one of six industry growth centres established by the Australian Government, and is a not-for-profit organisation that helps drive projects to benefit Australia’s energy ecosystem.

To find out more about the Brisbane workshop and mentoring program, email TIQ Mining and Resources.

Expressions of interest for the $5,000 subsidies to attend Gastech close 20 April.

Oil, gas and other resources are identified as one of Queensland’s export strengths in the Queensland Trade and Investment Strategy 2017–2022.