How does Austrade's Export Market Development Grant (EMDG) grant work, what's it worth and what are the key due dates?
The EMDG process has changed from FY22 onwards.
You must pre-submit a plan to Austrade ahead of the upcoming FY and have it approved by Austrade, otherwise you will not be able to make a claim.
For FY24, as an example, you needed to have pre-submitted your plan in a short 6 week window back in April/May 2023. If you have not done this, you cannot claim for FY24, and can only claim in subsequent years.
More details in our EMDG FY22, FY23 and beyond FAQ.
The Export Market Development Grant (EMDG) is managed by Austrade and is available to startups and growing businesses looking to expand overseas.
You can claim up to 50% of eligible export promotional expenses as long as you spend at least $15,000 .
It is run as a "spend and reimbursement" process, and you can claim up to "770,000 over 8 claims years" .
What expenses can you claim?
It's a fine line but the primary purpose is for marketing, not sales and not seeking investment nor product development. The categories of expenses you can claim for include:
- Overseas Representatives (eg if you appoint a marketing rep overseas)
- Marketing consultants
- Overseas trips (this has traditionally been a key area claimed)
- Communications incl websites
- Free Samples
- Trade Shows
- Promotional literature
- Overseas buyers
- IP / Patents (great for IP heavy startups, like medtech's)
How does it work?
First you have to spend the money, and then claim it back. The EMDG reimbursement is a strange kind of split-payment system with an initial amount paid and then subject to whether the program has enough overall budget left to pay a second top-up payment.
You need to apply by 30 November for the prior financial year (against your pre-approved plan), or you have until 28 February if using an approved grant consultant.
It's a heavily audited program; therefore you can expect to be audited for your first lodgement so you'll need detailed documentation.
Because of this we encourage startups to use an approved grant consultant such as Avant Group whom we know, recommend and work with for our clients.
- EMDG Grant information [Austrade website]