Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb has welcomed the Republic of Korea's expression of interest in participating in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Agreement.
"Korea's interest reflects the significance of the TPP in shaping economic architecture in the Asia-Pacific region," Mr Robb said.
"Korea is an important strategic partner for Australia in Asia and our third-largest export market hence the significance of us concluding negotiations with them on a Free Trade Agreement. I now look forward to discussing Korea's possible entry into the TPP in the future."
6 December 2013: Despite being a relative minnow in terms of population, Australian tech entrepreneurs are more than holding their own against the giants of the region in the 2013 Deloitte Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific.
Australia saw substantial growth for the third consecutive year, with 66 companies ranking in the top 500, which is six more than in 2012 and 13 more than in 2011. This year Australian based, PlanB Logistics (5th), BlueChilli Technology (7th),Vinomofo (13th) and b2cloud (14th) all ranked in the top 20.
Eight McLaren Vale wineries are gaining a better understanding of the role customer feedback and research can play in helping them to build their businesses through innovation as part of a new industry program.
The program - running through until the end of January - is a joint initiative between the Department for Manufacturing, Innovation, Trade, Resources and Energy and the Australian Wine Research Institute.
Manufacturing, Innovation and Trade Minister, Tom Kenyon said the program was based on the successful Design Led Innovation Program delivered earlier this year as part of the State Government's Manufacturing Works Strategy.
Data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics today shows exports (seasonally-adjusted) were steady at $27.3 billion in October; but were 11.8 per cent higher from a year ago. This follows increases of 0.6 per cent and 3.8 per cent in the previous two months.
Goods exports (not seasonally adjusted) to East Asia rose by 1 per cent in October to be 25.7 per cent higher from a year ago, at $17.5 billion. Of this, $9 billion went to China, which increased by 6.8 per cent to be 59 per cent higher from a year ago. Mainly driving the increase were exports of iron ore and hard coking coal, which were both up in October. Exports to the 10 ASEAN economies rose 3.5 per cent in October to $2.3 billion, to be 9.7 per cent up from a year ago.
Thursday, 5 December 2013 - Transaction volumes and confidence are up in the global power and utilities sector and a further uptick in deal activity is expected both locally and globally in 2014, according to EY.
EY’s Global Capital Confidence Barometer: Power & Utilities report, released this week, shows nearly a third (28%) of the 203 respondents in the sector globally intend to pursue an acquisition in the next 12 months – a three-fold increase on 18 months ago.
Big increases in tourism and migration engagement between Australia and Asia were the key performers in the latest PwC Melbourne Institute Asialink Index launched today.
The 2013 Index was released at the annual Asialink Chairman’s Dinner in Melbourne, where the Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, delivered the 2013 Asialink Sir Edward ‘Weary’ Dunlop Lecture.
This year’s Index shows that inbound tourism from Asia increased by more than 12 per cent in 2012, despite the strong Australian dollar, while outbound tourism to Asia rose by nearly 9 per cent. Inbound Chinese tourism rose by 24.4 per cent, its biggest annual jump in the history of the Index.
5 December 2013: According to a global survey released by Deloitte, business executives around the world say their focus on strategic risk is changing, with company reputation and repercussions from reputational damage now the number one strategic risk for large companies.
Managing Partner Deloitte Risk Services, Harvey Christophers, said. “Reputational risk was ranked third three years ago, and today it is the top strategic risk for all the five industry sectors we surveyed.
The Government will undertake a comprehensive review of competition laws and policy, the first in more than 20 years.
The ‘root and branch’ review delivers on a key election commitment and will help identify ways to build the economy and promote investment, growth and job creation.
The competition review will examine not only the current laws but the broader competition framework, to increase productivity and efficiency in markets, drive benefits to ease cost of living pressures and raise living standards for all Australians.
The last comprehensive review of competition policy – the Hilmer Review – was carried out in 1993 and much has changed in Australia’s economy since then.
Minister for Foreign Affairs Julie Bishop will travel to Indonesia, Beijing and the Philippines from 5-8 December.
The Minister will lead a high level delegation to Jakarta for broad-ranging discussions about the bilateral relationship, following President Yudhoyono's recent statement.
In China, Ms Bishop will participate in the annual Foreign and Strategic Dialogue with Foreign Minister Wang Yi. The Dialogue is a key mechanism to take forward our comprehensive bilateral agenda, and to discuss regional and global issues of common concern.
Cutting-edge expertise will be on show today as some of South Australia's leading manufacturers visit the University of Adelaide's Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing.
Manufacturing, Innovation and Trade Minister, Tom Kenyon said this was the first in a series of planned site tours of South Australia's research and development facilities as part of the Manufacturing Works Innovation and New Technologies initiative.
"The State Government is providing $500,000 over two years to the University of Adelaide to deliver the Photonics Catalyst Program and to support collaboration between South Australian manufacturers, researchers, end-users and government," Mr Kenyon said.
Australia has concluded negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the Republic of Korea, our third-largest goods export market and fourth-largest trading partner.
Building stronger trading relationships in Asia was a key election commitment and part of the Coalition's plan to build a strong, prosperous economy.
As a result of the Agreement, tariffs will be eliminated on Australia's major exports to Korea and there will be significant new market openings in services and investment. The FTA translates to higher economic growth and more jobs for Australians.
The push to drive employment and skills in the tourism sectors is the focus of a key strategic partnership between the Australian Government and the Queensland Government.
Federal Tourism Minister the Hon Andrew Robb AO MP said tourism was Australia’s and indeed one of Queensland’s key strengths.
“As part of a programme to create a more skilled, local tourism workforce, Tourism Employment Plans (TEP) are being rolled out across eight regions of Australia, including across the North, under our Tourism 2020 strategy,” he said.
“By 2015 we’ll need an additional 56,000 workers across Australia to meet expected growth in the sector.
3 December 2013: 2013 has been a patchy year for retail sales, stepping down on average from the performance registered during 2012.
That’s true for the Australian economy as a whole which continues to work through a difficult transition (from resources project construction as a growth driver to other areas). Hence overall employment growth is weak, and were it not for an increasing wave of retirements, we would have a more significant unemployment problem.
That subdued economic performance has led to plenty of monetary stimulus – low interest rates and a lower $A than had been seen up until May. And that stimulus is producing some dividends:
4 December 2013: Mining companies operating in Australia and globally will continue to face challenging market conditions in 2014, including rising costs, low commodity prices, supply/demand imbalances, and decreased productivity levels.
According to Deloitte’s Tracking the Trends 2014 report, miners that embrace innovation can lay the foundations for long-term business growth and be best positioned for future success.
Now in its sixth year, the report examines the top ten issues affecting mining companies around the world, highlighting key industry indicators and providing a range of solutions companies can adopt to manage the impacts of shifting industry dynamics.
New investment options have been added for significant investor visa applicants who wish to invest through eligible managed funds, Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash said today.
The additional options for investment come as the government works towards rebooting the significant investor visa programme, to ensure it produces the best possible outcomes for the nation.
New investment options include annuities issued by an Australian registered life insurance company, derivatives used for portfolio management and non-speculative purposes, loans secured by mortgages over other permitted eligible investments, and bonds, equity and other corporate debt in companies and trusts.
Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb departs today to participate in the 9th Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Bali followed by advanced high level Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) negotiations in Singapore.
Mr Robb is looking forward to the opportunity of co-chairing the 38th Cairns Group Ministerial Meeting in Bali tomorrow (2 December) with his counterpart, Indonesia’s Minister for Trade Mr Gita Wirjawan.
The Cairns Group, which was established in 1986, is a coalition of 19 agricultural exporting countries, committed to agricultural trade reform, including the elimination of trade distorting subsidies and tariffs. Food security will be a key issue on the agenda.
Today we are reminded of the substantial benefits foreign investment brings to Australia with the first shipment of iron ore concentrate from the multi-billion-dollar Sino Iron project in Western Australia's Pilbara.
Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb congratulated CITIC Pacific Mining on this significant milestone in a project that represents China's biggest investment in Australia's resources sector.
"The Sino Iron project, with its first shipment today from Cape Preston, marks a very important chapter in the history of foreign investment into our country which we of course warmly welcome," Mr Robb said.
Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb promoted agricultural trade reform today while co-chairing the 38th Cairns Group Ministerial Meeting in Bali with his counterpart, Indonesia’s Minister for Trade Gita Wirjawan.
This followed Mr Robb’s meeting earlier in the day with Cairns Group Farm Leaders, which was chaired by President of the National Farmers’ Federation, Mr Brent Finlay, and included other Australian food and agricultural industry representatives.
2 December 2013: Forest Enterprises Australia Limited (FEA) was placed into voluntary administration on 14 April 2010, following which Deloitte Restructuring Services Partners Tim Norman and Sal Algeri were appointed Receivers and Managers and Mortgagee’s Agents.
The Receivers today announced the commencement of a sale process of the entire FEA forestry estate, comprising both freehold land and hardwood plantation assets.
The sale process reflects over six months of collaborative efforts by the Receivers, Deed Administrators, secured creditors and managed investment scheme (MIS) grower investors to formulate an endorsed exit process.
A scheme that has helped tens of thousands of South Australians to reduce their energy bills will be extended to 2020.
Energy Minister Tom Koutsantonis said the scheme will also be expanded to include small businesses so that they too will have an opportunity to lower their power bills.
"Creating greater competition is only one element of this Government's strategy to ease cost of living pressures on South Australian households and small businesses," Mr Koutsantonis said.
"Helping South Australians to find more efficient ways to use electricity in their homes and their shops and factories is a further way we can help to reduce energy bills.
Three weeks since opening its doors for business, PwC's Indigenous Consulting (PIC) has attracted widespread support from Indigenous communities around the nation, as well as from peak business groups and the Federal and State Governments.
PIC, which is majority Indigenous owned, led and managed, is now Australia's biggest Indigenous consulting firm, which aims to create shared value – commercial activity that can deliver societal impact - by bringing cultural integrity to Indigenous projects, policies and programs on an unprecedented national scale.
Friday 29 November 2013 — Sixty-eight percent of technology executives believe the global economy is improving, with another 20% indicating the economy is stable. This points to the greatest confidence in the global economy in two years, according to EY’s ninth bi-annual Technology Capital Confidence Barometer.
Just six months ago, only a little more than half of respondents believed the economy was improving.
EY Private Equity Area Leader Bryan Zekulich said the findings are reflected in the Australian market where there has been a marked increase in activity in the past six months.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has launched the new Smartraveller advertising campaign to encourage Australians to make better informed travel choices.
The new advertisements feature Natalie Hensby, who was injured in a high speed boat crash on her way to a Full Moon Party in Thailand.
Natalie's story provides a real-life example of the value of the Smartraveller message.
Natalie had registered her contact details with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and bought travel insurance before she left. These steps didn't just save her more than $100,000 in medical costs, they saved her life.
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop and Trade and Investment Minister Andrew Robb have congratulated the city of Dubai on winning the right to host World Expo 2020.
This will be the first Expo ever to be held in the Middle East, and in the Arab world.
The Ministers expressed the hope that Dubai Expo 2020 will not only provide new and substantial opportunities to broaden the links between the two countries and people, but also promote future growth and stability in the region.
Dubai’s bid for Expo 2020 was strong, reflecting the city’s status as a global centre for the tourism and convention business and a global transport and logistics hub.