By Aimee Chanthadavong

The Fair Imports Alliance is calling on the federal government to provide specific funding for specialist e-tailing and online education for retailers.

This comes after the government’s AusIndustry Small Business Online Funding Program ignored the retail sector when it granted over $14 million to training providers in 2009.

Fair Imports Alliance joint spokesperson and executive director of the Australian Sporting Goods Association (ASGA) Brad Kitschke told RetailBiz funding is necessary to assist retailers who are facing structural and consumer shifts with a rise in online shopping.

“We believe the government’s funding for the AusIndustry Small Business Online Funding Program because it didn’t sufficiently meet the specific needs of retailers,” he said.

“It was a program for certain groups to deliver training to small business but there was no specific retail training. And we believe the retail sector is in a state of change that needs to be addressed.”

The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) and the ASGA will begin a series of retail e-commerce seminars and workshops beginning on Wednesday 13 April. The seminars will begin the process of education, training and engagement of retailers about the online market place.

“It’s important because the retail industry has recognised there is a need to engage in that online marketplace and that’s why the ARA and ASGA are organising the education seminar for retailers,” Kitschke said.

For more information about the seminars email