AKBC October update by the Executive Director

Let’s talk about Australia-Korea business relations and opportunities


Dear AKBC Member


The early days of October have been marked by celebration in Australia and Korea.


Sydneysiders exited an 107-day lockdown as the nation achieved a vaccination rate of more than 62 per cent for those over the age of 16, and more than 82 per cent having received at least one dose of the vaccine.


With Sydney opening back up to the delight of hairdressers, pubs and the hospitality sector, Koreans have celebrated a raft of holidays including Chuseok, National Foundation Day and Hungul Day.


Korea is also having a cultural moment with Netflix original, Squid Game, reaching the number one ranking on the streaming platform in 90 countries in 10 days. It’s also on track to become Netflix’s most popular show yet.


Amongst the celebration and binge-watching, it’s been a busy period for the AKBC in the lead up to the AKBC-KABC Joint Meeting at the end of October.


We held our Korea Konversations series with the Head of the Australian Space Agency, Enrico Palermo, and the Director of the Australian Antarctic Division, Kim Ellis – two fascinating discussions that highlighted the breadth of opportunity between Australia and Korea to tackle problems that affect us both as responsible global citizens.


We collaborated with Monash University to host the Australia-Korea Conference, and partnered with the Korean Embassy in Canberra and University of Melbourne on the Australia-Korea New Energy Forum, which saw more than 300 attendees partake in an in-depth discussion on how both nations can partner and benefit from the opportunities in hydrogen, low emissions technology, renewable energy and critical minerals. Yesterday, we held cultural training for some of our members to help them better understand the nuances of doing business in Korea.


The bilateral boom in energy and critical minerals is sizing up to be one of the most important areas of discussion and progress. The Morrison Government recently announced the establishment of a $2 billion loan facility for Australian critical minerals aimed at making “Australia a world-leader in the mining and downstream processing of in-demand resources, supporting jobs and communities, particularly in regional Australia.”


And in exciting news outside energy, Transport for NSW awarded a $AUD100 million contract extension to the RailConnect NSW joint venture of Hyundai Rotem, Mitsubishi Electric Australia and UGL Rail that will increase the New Intercity fleet to 610 vehicles.


Looking ahead, we are looking forward to hosting a series of virtual events throughout October. This includes briefings with Minister for Industry, Energy and Emissions Reduction, Angus Taylor, and the Australian Ambassador to the Republic of Korea, H.E Catherine Raper.


Yours sincerely

Liz Griffin

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Australia Korea Business Council
PO Box 24430
Melbourne, Vic 3001 Australia
Liz Griffin – Executive Director

The Australia-Korea Business Council is the leading national body committed to strengthening the Australia-Korea economic relationship.