Business Delegation – Canberra & Europe
EABC Delegation to Canberra
The EABC undertakes an annual Australian Business Delegation to Canberra for representatives of European firms to engage with Australian Ministers and other public policy-makers and regulators.
The programme includes meetings and events with European Commissioners, Australian Government Ministers, senior officials, diplomats, peak business organisations, think-tanks and the media.
EABC Delegations to Europe
EABC 2017 Business Mission to Europe
For the 2017 Mission to Amsterdam, The Hague, Antwerp, Brussels, Dublin and London, the Council was delighted to have the leadership and of Australia’s Minister for Finance and Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate, Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann, and the participation in Brussels of the Deputy Prime Minister of Australia and Minister for Agriculture the Hon Barnaby Joyce MP. The Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade), Dr Stephanie Fahey, also participated in the mission.
The Mission delegation included twenty-seven Australian business representatives, including Chairmen and CEOs of major companies with major investments in Europe. A broad a broad range of sectors were represented including innovation, energy, transport, agriculture, engineering, logistics, resources, education, law, retail, fashion, telecommunications, investment and banking, tourism, advertising, professional services, biotechnology, and finance.
During the programme, the delegation met with elected leaders, senior officials and business leaders. The focus of the mission was to examine the political and institutional responses to the European economic crisis and governance in the financial and banking sectors. The mission also studied strategies and models to promote growth and jobs, innovation and to transition towards clean energy sources, as well as progress and support for major multilateral and bilateral trade negotiations.
With the perspective for a Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between Australia and the EU which negotiations are expected to start in November 2017, the Mission also promoted an FTA as an ambitious and comprehensive economic partnership framework, and called for an expedited process in a context of rising protectionism and tighter economic policy.
Finally, following the UK Referendum on 23 June 2016, the 2017 Mission offered an opportunity to better understand the processes and challenges posed by Brexit, and their potential implications for Australia and Australian businesses. These discussions were held across the week, and in London at the end of the programme.
EABC 2016 Business Mission to Europe
In 2016, EABC Members travelled to Zurich, Bern, Brussels and Helsinki.
The Mission delegation included twenty-four Australian business representatives, including Chairmen and CEOs of major companies with significant investments and operations in Europe.
The composition of the delegation included a broad range of sectors including construction, energy, engineering, logistics, mining and resources, education, law, retail, fashion, telecommunications, investment and banking, tourism, professional services, biotechnology, and finance.
The programme was arranged by the Council in partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Austrade, and the Australian Missions and Austrade offices in Europe, and their counterparts from Europe based in Canberra and Sydney.
The focus of the 2016 mission was to examine the political and institutional responses to the European economic crisis, and the performance of economic recovery and growth strategies, progress and support for major trade negotiations, and early reactions to the Brexit referendum in the UK.
EABC 2015 Business Mission to Europe
The 2015 EABC Business Mission to Europe, was delighted to have the leadership and participation of Australian Finance Minister, Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann, to Brussels, Munich and Milan.
The Mission delegation included twenty-five Australian business representatives, including Chairmen and CEOs of major companies with significant investments and operations in Europe.
The composition of the delegation included a broad range of sectors including construction, energy, logistics, mining and resources, education, law, retail, telecommunications, investment and banking, tourism, professional services, biotechnology, finance, and fashion.
The delegation also included Bruce Gosper, Chief Executive of Austrade; Jane Halton AO PSM, Secretary of the Department of Finance; Simon Atkinson, Chief of Staff to Minister Cormann; and Angus Armour, Deputy Secretary, NSW Trade and Investment.
The missions serve to profile the importance of Europe to Australia’s economy and the influence of European policy and institutions in global affairs. The programme provides prominent Australian business leaders, who are active in domestic policy circles, with insights into the drivers of European integration, often misreported or misrepresented in news reports and commentary. The missions have also been invaluable in forging relationships and ongoing contact between the Council and peak business and policy groups.
EABC missions are actively supported by the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Austrade, and Ambassadors to countries visited during the programme. The Delegation of the European Union to Australia and New Zealand and Embassies of European Member States also provide active support and endorsement of the missions.
In Brussels, Munich and Milan the delegation met with elected leaders, senior officials and business leaders. The focus of the mission was to examine the political and institutional responses to the European economic crisis, and their performance in stimulating economic recovery and growth.
EABC 2014 Business Mission to Europe
The 2014 EABC Business Mission to Europe was led by Australian Trade and Investment Minister, the Hon Andrew Robb AO MP. The delegation consisted of twenty-eight Australian business representatives who travelled to London, Brussels, Warsaw and Madrid.
In London, Brussels, Warsaw and Madrid, the delegation met with elected leaders, senior officials and business leaders. The focus of the mission was to examine economic recovery in the eurozone and European Union as a whole, major policy and institutional changes that have occurred to economic governance, and the results of the May 2014 European Parliamentary elections.
The mission also focused on Europe’s strategic, trade and energy issues with major partners including the US (with whom it is currently negotiating an FTA), Russia (principally on energy issues), China (recently concluded an investment agreement), and Japan (also with an FTA under negotiation), and opportunities to promote a comprehensive FTA between Australia and the European Union.
The visits to London, Warsaw and Madrid also focused on ways to further bilateral trade and investment opportunities. Meetings with peak business and employer groups, chambers of commerce, industry associations, and with trade and investment promotion agencies – including a high-level investment and infrastructure forum in Madrid.
EABC 2013 Business Mission to Europe
The 2013 EABC Business Mission to Europe was led by HE Ms Quentin Bryce AC CVO, Governor-General of Australia. The EABC was honoured that the Governor-General was the Head of its Delegation which visited France, Belgium, Slovakia and Austria from 2 -7 June 2013. This is the first occasion that an Australian Governor-General has led an economic mission overseas. The mission examined political and economic developments in Europe and the increasing influence that the institutions of the European Union hold in European and global affairs. The policy areas covered included financial markets, trade, energy, resources, climate change, infrastructure, innovation and many other areas of commercial interest.
Discussions also focused on Europe’s relationship with its major political and economic partners including China, Russia, and the US; European perspectives on the Asia-Pacific region, and co-operation between Australia and Europe in international institutions and forums such as the G20, NATO and the UN. The missions also provide a valuable opportunity for Australian business leaders to work with Australian Government representatives in Europe – principally with Australian Embassies and Missions and Austrade offices – to promote Australia’s economic credentials and capabilities, opportunities for European investment in Australia, and meeting with major European companies active in the Australian market.
The 2013 economic mission also marked the launch in Brussels of the inaugural Australian-European Leadership Dialogue.