A review of SME export barriers: the case of Australian small and medium-sized exporters

1 Jan 2013

There are only few studies that focus on the export underperformance of Australian SMEs. This study attempts to provide a better understanding of the export barriers that face the SME sector in Australia. Hence, this paper reviews the significance contribution of the SME sector to the Australian economy. In doing so, it is important to critically review the exiting literature related to the export barriers to identify the current gaps in the literature. The export marketing literature has been criticized for providing only "isolated, fragmented" results, and for not being able to develop a widely accepted model of export performance. Most of them adopted either an internal perspective (managerial and/or organizational factors) or an external one (environmental factors). Only a few studies have considered both groups simultaneously. Hence, this paper attempts to provide a more rounded analysis of the barriers to export performance including psychological factors. It proposes a number of hypotheses for Australian SMEs export performance related to various barriers to their development needs. Future research can be employed in testing these hypotheses using exploratory survey analysis to provide empirical results to the proposed hypotheses in this study.

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