International opportunities for Australians

The most prominent roles for Austrade staff based internationally are appointments as Trade Commissioners at various levels of seniority in over 40 locations around the world.

These appointments are designated security assessed positions; successful candidates must be Australian citizens and will be subject to a national security assessment.

Trade Commissioners appointments to a particular location are generally for either three or four years duration.

What is a Trade Commissioner?

Trade Commissioner and Senior Trade Commissioners

The Role – These high profile roles will see you represent Australia and Austrade in the relevant location to:

  • optimise existing and establish new business networks
  • support Australian businesses and industry to identify and take advantage of trade opportunities and investment flows within the region
  • attract productive foreign direct investment into Australia

These positions are also responsible for providing (or supporting) the overall leadership and daily management of the relevant post, including locally engaged staff.

Skills/Experience Required

If you are interested in overseas opportunities with Austrade, you should be aware that Austrade’s selection criteria for Trade Commissioners include:

  • Understanding of both the government context for Austrade’s work and the needs of the businesses that we serve and advise
  • Sound understanding of international markets and business trends relevant to the market in which the role is located
  • Experience working in international markets, preferably including experience as a manager
  • Demonstrated capability to effectively represent Austrade in a range of high level corporate and government settings in Australia and offshore
  • Relevant language skills

Full selection criteria are set out in the documentation provided for each vacancy when advertised.

Language skills

As noted above, language skills including (but not limited to) Austrade priority languages are desirable or highly desirable for all Austrade positions:

Priority Languages

  • Arabic
  • Bahasa Indonesian
  • Cantonese
  • Hindi
  • Japanese
  • Mandarin
  • Spanish

Other specialist languages

  • Bahasa Malay
  • French
  • German
  • Italian
  • Korean
  • Polish
  • Portuguese
  • Russian
  • Thai
  • Turkish
  • Vietnamese

Consul General Appointments

It is important to note that depending on location, the Trade Commissioner/Senior Trade Commissioner may also hold the appointment of Consul General.

In the role of Consul General you are the key Australian Government representative in the location, and fulfil the Head of Post role, manage passport, consular services and immigration tasks and provide assistance to Australian citizens, who may be in distress.

This may include visiting and representing Australians in jail, or managing outcomes affecting Australians during natural disasters such as Hurricane Katrina, or the Aceh Tsunami.

To perform well in these appointments, you need to demonstrate resilience and empathy in difficult situations.


Remuneration packages and benefits are advertised at the time of recruiting for the role. Other benefits & conditions are discussed with the successful candidate (such as education for dependents etc).