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Automotive envoys to boost export opportunities
Industry minister appoints Bracks, Conomos as automotive ambassadors
24 Jul 2009
By TERRY MARTIN
FORMER Victorian premier Steve Bracks and recently retired Toyota Australia chairman emeritus John Conomos are to become official ambassadors for the Australian automotive industry, advising the government and creating export opportunities for car-makers and component suppliers.
Federal industry minister Kim Carr announced the appointments this week, having returned from a trade mission in China that secured agreements with three Chinese car-makers to create working parties which will explore new business opportunities with Australian component suppliers.
Mr Bracks was responsible for a comprehensive review into the car industry released last year, which formed the basis for the federal government’s subsequent ‘New Car Plan for a Greener Future’.
Senator Carr (left) said the new ambassadors were appointed under the Automotive Market Access Program (AMAP), which forms part of the $6.2 billion new car plan.
“The envoys will play a key role in assisting the Australian automotive industry, particularly component suppliers, to access global supply chains in critical regions, including Asia, Europe and the US,” Senator Carr said.
“My recent visit to China has made it clear that there are real opportunities for Australian industry in integrating into growing global markets, especially in the Asia-Pacific.
“Mr Conomos and Mr Bracks are ideally placed to lift our efforts in securing new business and jobs for Australian workers.”
Senator Carr said the envoys would advise industry and government about market opportunities and approaches to accessing global supply chains. He also said the pair would make representations to “facilitate Australian automotive access in global supply chains and leading Australian trade missions overseas”.
“Both Mr Conomos and Mr Bracks have extensive experience within the Australian and international automotive industries,” Senator Carr said. “The depth and breadth of their knowledge and expertise will be extremely valuable in helping the Australian automotive industry access overseas markets.
“The AMAP and the automotive envoy initiative reflect the Rudd government’s strongly held view that car-making is a global business and that the Australian automotive industry must cement its place in international automotive markets.
“This will mean winning more overseas business whilst continuing to improve its links with international supply chains.”
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