From the 3rd to 5th November at the Crown Convention Centre in Perth, the most significant bilateral conference between Germany and Australia and the wider Asia-Pacific region redefined the depth of economic linkages between our countries and the wider region.
Political and business leaders explored new investment and trade opportunities with a special focus on growth in the Asia-Pacific. The event was a fantastic success and brought together a diverse mix of professionals from Germany, Australia and Asia-Pacific countries, including senior government ministers, diplomats and trade advisers; CEOs and company directors; manufacturers and suppliers; exporters and importers; professional associations and industry bodies; service providers; and sponsors from blue-chip companies.
Almost three dozen multinational business leaders spoke at the conference aimed at strengthening ties between Australia, Germany and the Asia-Pacific, along with delegates from the World Economic Forum, European Union, Austrade, the CSIRO and Business Council of Australia.
The conference secured the attendance of trade and foreign affairs dignitaries from Germany, Singapore, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Brunei and Indonesia.
In anticipation of the event, Finance Minister Mathias Cormann, who organised the conference as the culmination of his work chairing the Australia Germany Advisory Group, said it would strengthen Australia’s relationship with Germany.
“The objective here is to obviously pursue opportunities for Australia and Germany to do more business with each other, for business in Australia to do more business in Germany and German business to do more business in Australia,” Senator Cormann said.
The official opening keynote speech was given by the Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, he said: ''(Our relationship) illustrates why Australia and the European Union have agreed to commence free trade negotiations early next year. Australia and the European Union are key partners in reinforcing the rules-based economic system. This is how you enable healthy competition, generate growth and spread the benefits fairly to consumers. Just ask Aldi, as it invests in Australia and pushes into Asia.''
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Julie Bishop gave a keynote speech during the Policy Dialogue session on the 4th November, drawing attention to the vast mutual benefit to Europe and to the Indo-Pacific from greater economic engagement and integration.
The conference also welcomed one of Germany's biggest musical stars to the stage - Nena, whose song '99 Luftballoons' became a global sensation in the eighties. To watch the original music video click here.
The conference was deemed a huge success and has advanced policy dialogue between Australia, Germany and the Asia-Pacific region.
For further information on the conference wrap-up click here.