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1. Australia in the Asian Century White Paper: Australias roadmap for navigating the Asian century 2. The Asian Century an Australian opportunity 3. Lifting prosperity in the Asian century 4. Boosting innovation in the Asian century 5. Australias infrastructure in the Asian century 6. NBN to facilitate closer ties with Asia 7. Deregulation to drive Australia towards Asian century success 8. Small business to profit in the Asian century 9. A resilient and sustainable Australia in the Asian century 10. White Paper sets course for Asia studies 11. Australian universities to be worlds best in the Asian century 12. Public sector leadership in the Asian century 13. Attracting skilled migrants, tourists and students to Australia in the Asian century 14. Regional Australia to drive stronger links with Asia 15. Asian century grants scheme to fund business development 16. Australia to pursue free trade area of the Asia Pacific 17. Australia to devote more trade and investment resources to Asia 18. Agriculture key to Australias role in the Asian century 19. Defence and security in the Asian century 20. Building relationships with our regional partners 21. Cultural diplomacy a vital underpinning for Asian century 22. Sport a powerful unifier in the Asian century

AUSTRALIA IN THE ASIAN CENTURY WHITE PAPER: AUSTRALIAS ROADMAP FOR NAVIGATING THE ASIAN CENTURY Prime Minister Julia Gillard today released the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper, a roadmap showing how Australia can be a winner in the Asian century. The White Paper lays out an ambitious plan to ensure Australia will emerge stronger over the decades ahead, by taking advantage of the opportunities offered by the Asian century. In this century, the region in which we live will become home to most of the worlds middle class and will be the worlds largest producer of goods and services, and the largest consumer of them. The scale and pace of Asias rise is staggering, and there are significant opportunities and challenges for all Australians. It is not enough to rely on luckour future will be determined by the choices we make and how we engage with the region we live in. We must build on our strengths and take active steps to shape our future. The White Paper sets out a number of targets for our country over the next 13 years to 2025 to ensure Australia can fulfil its ambitions and compete effectively within Asia, including: By 2025, Australias GDP per person will be in the worlds top 10, up from 13th in 2011, requiring a lift in our productivity. This will mean Australias average real national income will be about $73,000 per person in 2025 compared with about $62,000 in 2012. By 2025, our school system will be in the top five in the world, and 10 of our universities in the worlds top 100. Globally we will be ranked in the top 5 countries for ease of doing business and our innovation system will be in the worlds top 10. Studies of Asia will be a core part of the Australian school curriculum. All students will have continuous access to a priority Asian languageChinese (Mandarin), Hindi, Indonesian and Japanese. Our leaders will be more Asia literate, with one-third of board members of Australias top 200 publicly listed companies and Commonwealth bodies having deep experience in and knowledge of Asia.

Our economy will be deeply integrated; our trade links with Asia will be at least one-third of GDP, up from one-quarter today. Our diplomatic network will have a larger footprint across Asia supporting stronger, deeper and broader links with Asian nations.

The White Paper sets out a comprehensive agenda for making the most of the opportunities ahead. It considers how Australia will successfully navigate the years ahead across five areas: strengthening our economy; building our capabilities; connecting to growing markets; ensuring sustainable security; and nurturing deeper and broader relationships. It sets out what actions can be taken by governments, and also calls on businesses and communities to play their part in shaping our future. By 2025, this means real change for Australians. Children in kindergarten now will graduate from high school with a sound working knowledge of Asia because, throughout their schooling, the curriculum will have included studies relevant to Asia and access to a priority Asian language. Work and holiday agreements between Australia and its neighbours in Asia will mean more opportunity for work and study in the region and to take up professional opportunities as they emerge. The financial markets will be better integrated and capital will flow more easily across borders for investment, innovation and jobs growth. Global and regional value chains will be broader and deeper across the regionwith opportunities for both small and large businesses. Explosion in demand for high-quality agricultural products will mean opportunities for our farmers and regional Australia. More tourists from nations in Asia will choose Australia as a holiday destination and more students from the region will study here in more advanced universities. The National Broadband Network will reach across Australia giving access to the furthest corners of the region. Australia will have more comprehensive diplomatic ties with key regional nations China, India, Indonesia, Japan and South Koreaand will have expanded them with many others, from Mongolia to Vietnam and beyond. Australia comes to these challenges with firm foundations: a strong economy, a track record of engagement in the region, and the person-to-person connections many Australians already have with people in Asian countries.

The White Paper calls on all of us to play our part in becoming a more Asia-literate and Asia-capable nation. The Australian Government will play its part in leading our nation to this vision of the future during a time of enormous change. Like past Labor governments, we will manage and shape change with the aim of providing better opportunities for all. To support the implementation of this ambitious plan for the future, Craig Emerson, Minister for Trade and Competitiveness, will take on the responsibility for assisting the Prime Minister to deliver on the objectives of the White Paper. His new responsibilities, as Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Asian Century Policy, will complement his existing portfolio responsibilities. Prime Minister Gillard thanked each of the White Paper Task Force and Advisory Panel members, and those organisations and individuals who contributed to the White Paper consultation process, both in Australia and overseas, as she asked for the broader community to consider their part in shaping a shared future. Copies of the White Paper will be made available online from 11AM at

SYDNEY 28 OCTOBER 2012 PRESS OFFICE: (02) 6277 7744

The Hon Wayne Swan MP Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer


28 October 2012


With Asia set to become the worlds largest economic region before the end of this decade, the Asian century offers our nation immense opportunities. While the shape of the Asian century is not set in stone, the structural shift of global economic gravity towards our region mean the scale and pace of Asias rise in the coming decades will be truly transformative. Within only a few years, the Asian region will not only be the worlds largest production zone, it will be the worlds largest consumption zone. Asia will not only remain home to the majority of the worlds population, but will be home to the majority of the worlds middle class. According to Treasury modelling prepared for the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper: By the end of this decade, Asia is set to overtake the economic output of Europe and North America combined to become the worlds largest economic power. By early next decade, the combined output of China and India is expected to exceed that of the whole Group of Seven (G7). Average GDP per person in Asia is set to almost double by 2025 a feat that took the United Kingdom over 50 years to achieve during the Industrial Revolution. By 2025, four of the ten largest economies in the world are expected to be in the Asian region, and Asia is likely to account for almost half of the worlds economic output. Between now and 2025, China and India are expected to make the largest contributions to global and regional economic growth relative to any other national economy. Indonesia, Malaysia and other countries in Southeast Asia will also grow rapidly and make major contributions to regional growth. Productivity gains are expected to underpin rapid growth in Asia into the next decade, notwithstanding short-term volatility in the global economy.

2 There is significant potential for continued labour productivity growth, with output per person in China only 20 per cent of that in the United States, while India and Indonesia have barely reached 10 per cent. Even under a slow growth scenario assuming that productivity gains are 50 per cent less than anticipated Asia will still be the fastest growing region in the world, with four of the ten largest economies in the world still projected to be in Asia by 2025.

The fundamental message of the White Paper is that the Asian century will offer enormous opportunities for Australia across all sectors of our economy including resources, services, agriculture and manufacturing. We have already seen Asias demand for raw materials create an extraordinary boom in minerals and energy investment, and Asias ongoing industrialisation and urbanisation will continue to drive robust demand for a wide range of mineral resources. We can be confident that Australian resources investment will remain at high levels over the medium term and will continue to lift resource production and exports. Asias transformation will bring unprecedented opportunities for Australia beyond resources, with Asias middle class anticipated to increase by more than 2.5 billion people by 2030 and account for around 60 per cent of global middle-class consumption. This means countries in Asia will demand a diverse range of goods and services, from health and aged care to education to household goods and tourism, as well as high-quality food products. Australia is in the prime position to meet this burgeoning demand and take advantage of the enormous opportunities unfolding right on our very doorstep. A key theme of the White Paper is that one of Australias great strengths is our people we have a highly-skilled, adaptable and creative population with deepening connections with the region and demonstrated capability in innovation and complex problem-solving. We also have an open, flexible and resilient economy by any measure one of the strongest in the world with world-class institutions and a high level of productivity. Our economy has been built on the back of hard work, good decisions and an appetite for forward-thinking reforms. To make the most of the abundant future opportunities we need to sprint to keep up with the rapid changes in our region we cannot assume that we will benefit from location alone. This means building resilience and lifting productivity growth, finding new ways to operate in and connect with growing Asian markets, building sustainable security and forging deeper and broader relationships in our region. Critically, we must continue investing in our most valuable resource our people to ensure that all Australians can participate in and benefit from the Asian century. This will require a concerted and coordinated effort by governments, business and the broader community over many years, and is a challenge that our entire nation must prepare for. Contact: Matthew Coghlan 0415 098 050

The Hon Wayne Swan MP Deputy Prime Minister and Treasurer


28 October 2012


The Gillard Government is setting an ambitious goal for Australia in the Asian Century White Paper of breaking into the worlds top ten in GDP per person by 2025, with a nation-wide effort to boost our productivity growth. Achieving this goal would mean that Australias real income per person could rise to around $73,000 by 2025 from $62,000 in 2011. Since the Labor Government came to office Australia has moved up four places in the world rankings to 13th by this measure, reflecting our communitys hard work and resilience in the face of the worst global economic turbulence in three quarters of a century. We cannot take these gains for granted, and while we are already a highly productive economy by world standards, reaching the top ten will require a sustained and concerted effort to lift our productivity growth. Together, the objectives and pathways in the White Paper provide a roadmap for Australia to achieve this ambitious productivity goal. An important part of this will be lifting our productivity performance at home, irrespective of exactly how the Asian century evolves. That is why the Government will progress domestic reforms and investments across five pillars of productivity: skills and education, innovation, infrastructure, tax, and regulation. This will lay the building blocks for Australia to achieve this ambitious productivity goal, and will help Australia make enormous advances in the Asian century. Achieving this ambitious productivity goal will also hinge on our engagement and integration with the region, and cannot be achieved by the Government alone. Australia will need governments at all levels, business and the broader community to pull together over many years in order lift Australias productivity and prosperity. Skills and education

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2 Investing in the skills and education of the Australian community has been absolutely core business for the Gillard Labor Government, with this focus set to intensify as we set about reaching the ambitious goals set out in the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper. Strong increases in funding from early childhood to higher education are giving our students the best chance to excel and seize the opportunities of the Asian century. We will deliver $5.3 billion in additional funding for universities for the period 2012-2015 and the $1.75 billion skills National Partnership to improve access, responsiveness and quality in the VET sector. The White Paper sets out the importance of all Australians improving their knowledge of Asia through the education and skills sectors. That is why Asia-literacy will be a core requirement in new educations reforms being negotiated under the National Plan for School Improvement. As we continue on our reform path, we will ensure Australias school systems will be in the top five schooling systems in the world, and our universities and training systems will be among the worlds best. Innovation The White Paper sets out that we must strive to find better ways of doing business, develop new business models and create new and improved products. This will be a primary driver of the improvements in productivity and competitiveness needed for Australia to take advantage of opportunities afforded by the Asian century. Our vision is for Australia to have an innovation system that is in the top ten globally. To achieve this it must support dynamism in business with a creative problem solving culture. Our innovation system must also boost our evolving areas of strength to attract top researchers, companies and global partnerships. Since coming into office in 2007, this Government has increased support for science, research and innovation by 35 per cent to $8.9 billion. We have improved support to innovating businesses through the new R&D Tax Incentive and the introduction of Commercialisation Australia as well as increasing funding for university research by 44 per cent. We are helping firms take advantage of the clean energy future by investing through the Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the Clean Technology Programs. Infrastructure The White Paper acknowledges the central role that high quality and coordinated infrastructure plays in improving our productivity. This Government has a proud record of investing in Australias nationally significant infrastructure to lift our productive capacity while lowering costs for business. We are investing over $36 billion in roads, rail and ports over the six years to 2013-14, as part of our Nation Building programs. Infrastructure Australia was established as one of the first acts of this Government to help better target the allocation of infrastructure spending towards the right projects and drive the development of a long-term, coordinated national approach to planning and investment. \Internal\DFS\Users\PMC5653\Desktop\Media releases\Lifting prosperity in the Asian century.docx

3 The Gillard Government will put in place measures to ensure better planning and prioritisation of infrastructure, and greater private sector investment, to support a growing Australian population and increasing trade and investment with the Asian region. This means implementing a systematic national framework, including preparing 20-year infrastructure strategies, in conjunction with States and Territories, to identify specific transport and infrastructure priorities. Tax reform Ongoing tax reform is a critical way that we can continue to boost our nations productivity. The White Paper points out that tax reform which promotes new investment and sensible risks helps to encourage innovation and boost productivity. The Government has rolled out a number of tax reform initiatives that boost productivity, including simpler and more generous depreciation arrangements for small business, loss carry-back, and an infrastructure tax incentive. We will continue to explore ways to boost productivity through business tax reform that can be funded from within the business tax system. The Government has now implemented or is implementing some 40 tax reforms which advance recommendations of the Australias Future Tax System Review. We are tripling the tax-free threshold from $6,000 to $18,200 to encourage workforce participation. We have ensured the retirement income system is well placed to respond to the opportunities and challenges presented by an ageing population, by gradually increasing the Age Pension qualifying age from 65 to 67. We are progressively increasing the Superannuation Guarantee from 9 to 12 per cent, abolishing its maximum age limit, and making the tax concessions provided for superannuation contributions fairer for both low and very high income earners. We have also reformed inefficient tax concessions, such as the fringe benefits tax treatment of cars, living-away-from-home allowances and benefits, and in-house fringe benefits, and also the tax offsets provided for golden handshakes and dependent spouses. As well as improving the efficiency of the tax system, these decisions also improve the long-term position of the budget and make room for productivity enhancing investments like the National Plan for School improvement. Regulatory reform By 2025, Australia will strive to be among the most efficiently regulated countries in the world, increasing Australias attractiveness for foreign investors. The Government already has a strong record of undertaking regulatory reform to enhance productivity, improve competition and lower costs for business. Specifically, Australia should aspire to reach the top five for ease of doing business. To achieve this goal, development of a new round of regulatory and competition reform is already underway through the Council of Australian Governments and its Business Advisory Forum. \Internal\DFS\Users\PMC5653\Desktop\Media releases\Lifting prosperity in the Asian century.docx

4 This will build on the significant achievements to date through the Seamless National Economy reforms to regulation and competition, which are delivering long-term benefits for the Australian economy. The productivity challenge In order to achieve this ambitious productivity target and continued prosperity, everyone will need to play their part. Through these five pillars, the Government will continue to play its part in setting a framework to support business and the community to take on these challenges. Its vital we step up the pace in building the capabilities that will ensure our entire nation can capitalise on the immense opportunities of the Asian century. Our greatest responsibility is to invest in our people through education, to nurture a highly skilled workforce and to put opportunities within reach of all Australians. The Gillard Government is committed to continuing the hard work of reform to build Australias capabilities and facilitate productivity growth so that Australians can seize the opportunities and navigate the challenges of the Asian century. Contact: Matthew Coghlan 0415 098 050

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Leader of the Government in the Senate Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research


Minister for Industry and Innovation Minister for Climate Change and Energy Efficiency

28 October 2012


Australia will forge stronger links between industry and research institutions to be a leader in innovation and take advantage of the opportunities of the Asian century. Innovation is a core pillar of the plan to boost productivity growth and incomes outlined in the Gillard Governments Australia in the Asian Century White Paper. To boost innovation, the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper has set a national policy objective: By 2025, Australia will have an innovation system, in the top 10 globally, that supports excellence and dynamism in business with a creative problem-solving culture that enhances evolving areas of strength and attracts top researchers, companies and global partners.

The National Research Investment Plan, which will provide a framework for Government investment in science and research capacity, is being developed to help address national, regional and global economic challenges. The Gillard Government intends to place a stronger focus on improved coordination of its investments in people, industry and research to create the new jobs and market opportunities of the Asian century. Industry, the research sector, the workforce and all levels of Government will need to work more collaboratively to ensure we have the innovative products, services and processes, as well as the skilled workforce and solid networks, that are essential for success in the Asian century, Senator Evans said. We cannot rely solely on our natural resources for future prosperity. That is why the Government is managing a shift in the structure of our economy, boosting research, education and skills and encouraging productivity and competitiveness in our manufacturing and services sectors.

Mr Combet said the Government would draw on the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper as it developed industry and innovation policies, including in the forthcoming Industry and Innovation Statement. The Government's priorities include: Boosting innovation by encouraging collaboration between industry and researchers, including guidance from the National Research Investment Plan; Helping Australian businesses improve their understanding of the opportunities available in the diverse and growing Asian markets; Assisting business to access appropriate information and finance for new ventures; Creating new jobs from emerging market opportunities in Asia; and Building capacity within, and partnerships between, Australian businesses to capture new markets.

Government has an important role to play in promoting better coordination and cooperation between industry and the research community and in investing in innovation, education, skills and science, Mr Combet said. Senator Evans said the Government had already made important reforms to research funding programs to support international collaboration, including those administered by the Australian Research Council and the Cooperative Research Centres program. These make it easier for Australian researchers to work with their counterparts overseas and for talented international researchers to take up fellowships in Australia, Senator Evans said. In addition, the Government has major bilateral programs with China and India, designed to strengthen links between the Australian research community and their counterparts in those countries. Our future prosperity will depend on innovation driven by collaboration between industry, investors, researchers and entrepreneurs who are connected to the fast growing and developing Asian region.

Senator Evans's media contact: Rhys Davies 02 6277 7580 Minister Combet's media contact: Mark Davis 02 6277 7920

Media Statement
AUSTRALIAS INFRASTRUCTURE IN THE ASIAN CENTURY Infrastructure investment will play a key role in harnessing the opportunities and addressing the challenges of the Asian century. Infrastructure is a core pillar of the plan for boosting productivity growth and incomes contained in the Gillard Governments Australia in the Asian Century White Paper. Todays White Paper reinforces the importance of a national framework for developing, financing and maintaining nationally significant infrastructure. This will assist governments and the private sector to plan and prioritise infrastructure needs at least 20 years ahead. The White Paper emphasises that well-planned and prioritised infrastructure investment will support Australias growing trade and investment with the region as well as improving productivity and the efficient movement of goods and peopleboth domestically and internationally. Better infrastructure will reduce future congestion costs by billions of dollars a year. The Government has paved the way in positioning Australias infrastructure to meet the challenges ahead through a comprehensive reform and investment agenda. We have doubled annual infrastructure spending from $141 to $269 per Australian, with large scale road, rail and public transport projects expected to generate long term economic, social and environmental benefits far exceeding what they cost to build. Through the establishment of Infrastructure Australia, we have overhauled the way our nation plans, prioritises, finances, builds and uses infrastructure. We have boosted the economy through our $36 billion Nation Building Program and encouraged the use of technology to enhance the productivity of our roads through our Smart Motorways projects. The Interstate Rail Network is carrying more freight than ever before and at much faster speeds with average transit times between Brisbane and Melbourne, for example, now seven hours shorter than they were in 2005. After more than a century of failed attempts, Australia is now only months away from new national regulators in heavy vehicle, maritime and rail safety which will deliver more than $30 billion in national productivity benefits over the next 20 years. Our landmark shipping reforms which commenced on 1 July this year have already begun to harness the trade opportunities in the Asian region. The combination of a
PARLIAMENT HOUSE CANBERRA ACT 2600 Telephone: 02 6277 7680 Facsimile: 02 6273 4126

zero tax rate and internationally competitive employment conditions will help to revive Australias involvement in international shipping. In the competitive, globalised world of the 21st century, infrastructure matters. Our record investment combined with the national leadership weve taken to planning and prioritising Australias infrastructure needs means we are well placed to take advantage of the opportunities presented by the Asian century. 28 OCTOBER 2012 Media Contact: Virginia Kim 0407 415 484

NBN to facilitate closer ties with Asia

The Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, today welcomed the release of the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper, saying that the National Broadband Network will play an integral role in strengthening the Australian economy, including through engagement with Asia in the decades ahead. The White Paper highlights the importance of the National Broadband Network in supporting our engagement with Asian countries, whether its supporting education and business, or investing in and taking advantage of new technology, Senator Conroy said. The rollout and completion of the National Broadband Network to all Australians will: Enable schools, TAFEs, and universities to use the NBNs fast and reliable broadband service so that their students are able to access the very best teachers, experts and resources from across Australia, Asia and the world. Make it easier for students to undertake Asian studies and Asian language courses as part of their education, boosting understanding and person-to-person links through high-definition video conferencing. Be a major boost for Australian business. It will strengthen Australias productivity performance. And enable all Australian companies to have better access to Asian markets, unlocking opportunities and providing greater access to new knowledge, regional collaboration, and innovation. Open up new technology markets and ensure Australia can take full advantage of the potential of cloud computing.

Like Japan, Singapore, and South Korea, the Gillard Government is investing in super-fast broadband because we understand how fundamentally important the digital economy is for Australias continued economic growth and social wellbeing, Senator Conroy said. For Australia to embrace the Asian century and the opportunities it presents, the NBN is essential. It is a core part of the Gillard Governments productivity agenda and is a platform that will underpin our engagement with Asian countries and allow Australia to realise the enormous potential of our region. Date: 28 October 2012 Contact: Adam Sims 0408 258 457 (Office of Senator Conroy)

PW 219/12 28 October 2012


Australia will continue to reduce red tape and improve regulatory frameworks in order to boost Australias competitiveness and increase business productivity in the Asian century. The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper released today sets out a clear roadmap for Australian governments, business, unions and the community, to ensure Australia is best positioned to take advantage of the opportunities of the Asian century. We recognise that Australias economic growth in the Asian century will be increasingly tied to the growth of our region. Thats why its important to find ways of ensuring all Australians will be able to benefit from and participate in Australias growing prosperity and engagement in the Asian region, Minister for Finance and Deregulation, Senator Penny Wong, said. For Australian businesses to be competitive, we need efficient, well designed regulation that allows them to be flexible and innovative. Our aim is, that by 2025, Australia will be in the worlds top five when it comes to ease of doing business. The Gillard Government will enter into a National Productivity Compact with the states and territories, focused on regulatory and competition reform. This will build on the Business Advisory Forum held in April this year where business groups met directly with the Prime Minister and First Ministers. Following the Business Advisory Forum, COAG agreed to an ambitious new regulatory and competition reform agenda, with six priority areas for major reform to lower costs for business, including rationalising carbon reduction and energy efficiency schemes and addressing duplication of environmental assessment and approval processes. Significant progress has been made on these reforms, with advice to be considered by COAG in December 2012.

Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600 Australia Tel: (02) 6277 7400 Fax: (02) 6273 4110

The Gillard Government is working with the States and Territories to pursue concrete initiatives to lift regulatory performance across all areas of regulatory practice. Australia is already acknowledged as a world leader when it comes to regulatory arrangements, but there is always more to do, Minister Wong said. We want to ensure that Australia is as competitive as it can be as we enter the Asian century. The National Productivity Compact is expected to be agreed at the next meeting of the Business Advisory Forum, and will affirm a shared understanding between Australian Governments and the business community of the imperative to improve Australias national productivity and business competitiveness.

Media contact:

Evelyn Ek

0412 887 853



Minister for Housing Minister for Homelessness Minister for Small Business 28 October 2012

Small Businesses to profit in the Asian Century

Australias three million small businesses stand on the edge of the fastest growing economic region in the world, giving them access to great opportunities for business growth. The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper released today provides a comprehensive overview of how small and medium-sized enterprises will be supported to work across regional borders, meeting regional demand for quality goods and services. The Gillard Government is creating the environment in which small businesses not only survive, they thrive, Minister for Small Business Brendan OConnor said. Many small Australian businesses can see the potential of the Asian markets, but dont know how to take advantage of the opportunities. In the age of the Asian century, we want to work with them to ensure that all Australians have the potential to benefit from the growing economies on our doorstep. We appreciate that small businesses face special challenges competing internationally because of their size and limited access to finance, international contacts and knowledge of international regulatory requirements. This White Paper outlines the Gillard Governments commitment to providing well-targeted support, including offering practical in-market support and advice, creating the right operating environment to help businesses secure finances and providing badge-of-government support for firms considering carrying out business in Asia, capturing the benefits of the Asian century. By working closely with business and industry groups we will ensure that policy settings are right, whilst we share the networks and business insights to help our small and medium-sized enterprises compete in Asia. The Gillard Government currently offers a range of programs to assist small businesses to grow and benefit from opportunities in the Asian region, including the Small Business Support line, the Small Business Advisory Services program, the Buy Australian at Home and Abroad initiative, Enterprise Connect and Commercialisation Australia. In addition, more targeted support for exporting is provided by Austrade, Tourism Australia and the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation, whose mandate will be revised to ensure

more of its resources are devoted to addressing the market failures that impede Australias small and medium-sized exporters, especially in emerging and frontier markets. These programs work to sustain and grow Australian small and medium-sized businesses that aspire to greater success, within Australia and internationally. Australian business has already shown an aptitude for developing innovative products for Asian markets, Mr OConnor said. Australian businesses are in the right place at the right time to take advantage of the fastest growing region in the world, especially as the National Broadband Network opens up access to online markets. Our small businesses need to be supported to ensure that they benefit from the opportunities on their doorstep, Mr OConnor said. Media Adviser: Maria Hawthorne 0407 015 986


28 October 2012 A Resilient and Sustainable Australia in the Asian Century Australias actions at home and our engagement with Asia is ensuring effective action on climate change, sustainable management of our environmental assets and stronger food supply systems and energy markets. In the Asian century, this engagement will become increasingly important to Australias economic prosperity. Ministers Greg Combet, Tony Burke and Martin Ferguson today welcomed the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper. The White Paper sets out a national objective to ensure that out to 2025, the Australian economy and our environmental assets will be managed sustainably to ensure the wellbeing of future generations of Australians. The White Paper also highlights the important work already being undertaken by Government to tackle the challenges identified. Australia is acting on climate change. We are committed to a clean energy future supported by stable, sustainable and secure markets and to reducing our emissions by at least five per cent compared with 2000 levels by 2020 and 80 per cent by 2050. The Governments Clean Energy Future plan ensures we will meet these targets in the most cost-effective and flexible way. The plan encourages investment in clean energy, supports jobs and competitiveness, enables our efforts to be linked with those overseas, and supports economic growth while reducing pollution. The Government has secured agreement to link Australia's domestic carbon market with the European Union Emissions Trading System. We are also working closely with our Asian neighboursincluding China, Indonesia, Japan and South Koreato build well-functioning and comprehensive carbon markets through active engagement in the Asia-Pacific Carbon Markets Roundtable. Australia invests billions of dollars in cleaner energy sources, including renewable energy. We are transforming the energy sector to move away from high polluting generation and investing $1.2 billion through the Clean Technology Program to help manufacturers develop and adopt clean technologies and improve energy efficiency. Australia is also storing carbon in the land through better land management strategies supported by the Carbon Farming Initiative.

The $10 billion Clean Energy Finance Corporation and the $3.2 billion Australian Renewable Energy Agency (ARENA) will work side-by-side to support renewable energy technology by providing financial assistance from development to deployment. In addition, the Renewable Energy Target will ensure 20 per cent of Australia's electricity is generated by renewable energy sources by 2020. The Government has supported solar innovation through the $150 million Australian Solar Institute (ASI) since 2009, and now through ARENA. ASI has invested close to $90 million in solar research and development projects, in addition to providing support for over 30 early career solar researchers. The Government continues to support the improvement of energy efficiency by Australian industry. The International Energy Agency has highlighted Australias Energy Efficiency Opportunities program as a leading-edge example for improving energy efficiency outcomes and addressing information failures. Companies participating in the program have reported implementing savings worth over $800 million a year, equivalent to a reduction of 1.5 per cent of Australias total energy use. The resilience of Australias environment will be a key contributor to the nations prosperity in the Asian century. That is why we will review the operation of Australias Biodiversity Conservation Strategy 2010-2030 after its first five years. Work to develop a system of National Environmental Accounts to put an economic value on biodiversity and ecosystem services will also help to ensure the impacts of biodiversity loss and the short and long-term trade-offs of resource usage are considered by decision makers. Protecting biodiversity is an ongoing priority, in rivers and oceans as well as on land. The Government has released a proposed final network of marine reserves whichif proclaimed under national environment lawwill see the national network cover more than a third of Commonwealth waters. It is also finalising the Murray-Darling Basin Plan to ensure we have healthy rivers, strong communities and sustainable food production. Continuing to ensure that our natural assets are sustainable, resilient and well-managed, and globally recognised as such, will put Australia in the strongest position to meet the challenges and the opportunities of the coming Asian century.

Media contact: Mark Davis (Minister Combet) 02 6277 7920 Kate Scott-Murphy (Minister Burke) 0408 433 581 Elyse Gatt (Minister Ferguson) 0407 198 136


Minister for School Education, Early Childhood and Youth

28 October, 2012

White Paper sets new course for Asia studies

Success in the Asian century will require all Australian students to have a better understanding of the culture, history and languages of our Asian neighbours. Starting in school, students will need to develop the capabilities and skills to better understand and be active in the region. To achieve this, three national objectives have been announced by School Education Minister Peter Garrett in response to the release of the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper: Every Australian student will have significant exposure to studies of Asia across the curriculum to increase their cultural knowledge. All students will have the opportunity to study an Asian language from their first day of school through to Year 12. Priority Asian languages include Chinese (Mandarin), Hindi, Indonesian and Japanese. Australias school system will be in the top five schooling systems in the world, delivering excellent outcomes for all students of all backgrounds, and systematically improving performance over time, as outlined in the National Plan for School Improvement.

Our Asian neighbours are rapidly becoming the economic powerhouse of the world, and are increasing in global strategic importance, Mr Garrett said. The growth in the economies of nations like China, India and Indonesia will provide fantastic opportunities for Australian businesses, and help create thousands of high-tech, high-skill and high-wage jobs for Australians. Asia-literacy will be a core requirement in new education reforms being negotiated between the Commonwealth, States and Territories and non-government education authorities under the National Plan for School Improvement. As part of our ongoing discussions we will require opportunities for students to study Asian culture, history and languages, from their first day of school, through the Australian Curriculum. That will give the next generation of Australians the knowledge and capabilities to prosper in the Asian century. In line with these objectives, all schools will engage with at least one school in Asia to support the teaching of a priority Asian language, including through increased use of the National Broadband Network.

These national objectives support the Governments ambition for Australia to be in the top five schooling systems in the world, delivering excellent outcomes for all students regardless of their background, Mr Garrett said. The National Plan for School Improvement will make sure funding for schools is spent on the things we know will work to lift student results. This includes making sure schools are teaching students the skills they need to succeed in the Asian century. Building students knowledge and understanding of Asia is critical. The Gillard Government will work with business and the community to encourage students to study an Asian language and build their skills for the future. The continued focus on Asia literacy and Asian languages in the Australian Curriculum builds on significant investments already being delivered by the Gillard Government including: $62 million to increase the number of Australian students becoming proficient in languages and understanding the culture of China, Indonesia, Japan and Korea under the National Asian Languages and Studies in Schools Program $41.2 million to support flexible delivery of language education including online materials for teaching students in key areas including about Australias engagement with Asia $22.8 million to promote the study of Asia across all curriculum areas in Australian schools through the Asia Education Foundation Substantial investment in developing languages curriculums, with Chinese (Mandarin) being one of the first developed. $27.2 million for the NBN Enabled Education and Skills Services Program, including the Asia ConneXions utilising HD videoconferencing project.

The White Paper is available at:

Ministers Media Contact: Kate Sullivan 0409 490 741 DEEWR Media:


Leader of the Government in the Senate Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research

28 October 2012

Australian universities to be worlds best in the Asian century

Every Australian university will be encouraged to send students to universities in Asia to ensure the next generation of Australian leaders are Asia-literate, Minister for Tertiary Education Senator Chris Evans said today. Australian universities already have close working relationships with partner institutions in the region under the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper these relationships will be strengthened by the establishment of exchange arrangements with major Asian universities. Students will be able to gain credits for the study they undertake in Asia. The next generation of leaders will need to be Asia-literate and these are skills best learnt by first-hand experience, Senator Evans said. In the past decade, there have been 1.9 million enrolments of students from Asia in Australian education institutions. "We want to support more Australian students to undertake part of their study in the Asian region, not only to boost their direct understanding of Asia in the changing economy, but also to develop networks and friendships that will last a lifetime, Senator Evans said. Our aim is that by 2025, a larger number of Australian university students will be studying overseas and a greater proportion will be undertaking part of their degree in an Asian country. Thats why we will work with universities to substantially boost the number of Australian students studying in Asia. Universities will be supported to increase the number of students who undertake Asian studies and Asian languages as part of their university education, including through increased use of the National Broadband Network and digital technology. The Gillard Government has set a national objective for Australian universities to remain among the worlds best for research and teaching, delivering excellent outcomes for a larger number of Australian students. This means by 2025, we want to see 10 of Australias universities in the worlds top 100 - up from six currently in the top 100. Skills and education is a core pillar of the plan for boosting productivity growth and incomes contained in the Gillard Governments Australia in the Asian Century White Paper.

This will involve strengthening university and research ties in Asia, encouraging more Australian students to study abroad in the region and developing a training system that is among the worlds best. Senator Evans said young Australians will play a major role in improving community understanding of Asia, building the capabilities of our workforce and enhancing people-topeople links. Education is at the core of the Gillard Governments plan to create greater links with our Asian neighboursthrough universities, research, industry and business, Senator Evans said. Tomorrows leaders need a greater understanding of the countries in the Asian region to meet the challenges posed by the changing global economy. Continuing to strengthen our ties through education, research and training will ensure we remain competitive in the Asian century. Research and teaching links will also be encouraged between Australian institutions and those in the region with support through the Australian Research Council. Senator Evans said harmonising vocational training standards will help support a highly skilled Australian workforce able to continuously develop its capabilities in the changing economy. We will work with business and Australian industry partners through regional forums and bilaterally, to build in-country partnerships and to develop complementary skills and qualification assessment and recognition, Senator Evans said. Expanding training services and strengthening networks between Industry Skills Councils, Australian industry and unions, and their Asian counterparts, will help also support Australian businesses and workers to have a greater presence in Asian markets. Our efforts will ensure that Australia remains among the worlds best for research, teaching and training, and that we deliver excellent outcomes for a growing number of Australian students through stronger links within our region. Senator Evans Media Contact: Rhys Davies 0411 138 572 Amy McKenna 0408 570 603

THE HON GARY GRAY AO MP Minister for the Public Service and Integrity MEDIA RELEASE Public sector leadership in the Asian century
October 28 2012 The nations Asia-literate public sector will play a major leadership role in the Asian century, the Minister for the Public Service and Integrity Gary Gray said today. By 2025, one-third of board members of Commonwealth bodies and one-third of the senior leadership of the Australian Public Service (APS 200) will have deep experience in and knowledge of Asia. Mr Gray said the Australian Public Service would lead by example in meeting the challenges and opportunities presented by the growth of Asian economies. He said the Gillard Governments Australia in the Asian Century White Paper released today was a roadmap for the country to capitalise on strong economic growth in the region. This will require a whole-of-Public-Service leadership effort. Both the public and private sectors have significant roles to play if Australia is to make the most of the Asian century, Mr Gray said. Like the top 200 companies, we will boost Asia-literacy on the boards of all Commonwealth bodies as well as among the senior executive leadership group. A deeper understanding of the region means better integrated policy analysis, problem-solving and implementation across domestic and international matters. Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Dr Ian Watt and the Australian Public Service Commissioner Mr Stephen Sedgwick will develop a strategy to ensure the Government can build on existing capabilities to meet future needs. In developing this capability strategy, the APS will aim to embed practices that deepen Asia relevant knowledge and expertise, Mr Gray said. At the minister level, well build stronger relationships through more regular bilateral and regional engagement with our counterparts in Asia to pursue policy outcomes.

The Australian Public Service and Australian institutions, including cultural institutions, will need to have deeper knowledge and expertise of countries in our region, and have greater capacity to integrate domestic and international issues. The Australian Public Service and the corporate sector will need to work together to build on our skills and understanding of the region with more effective interaction at all levelspolitical, cultural, social and businessto improve policy development and implementation. Media contact: John Arthur 0408 991 261


28 October 2012


Australia is set to capitalise on Asias highly skilled population to create an educated, productive work force to bolster our economy in the future, the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship, Chris Bowen, said today. Even with the Government's unprecedented investment in tertiary education and up-skilling Australians, we need migrants who bring their specialist skills to Australia, Chris Bowen said. The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper highlights the exciting opportunities for Australias growth as our neighbours further build trade and industrial strength. Seven of the top 10 source countries in Australia's 2011-12 migration program are in the Asian region: India, China, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, South Korea and Vietnam. The Indian sub-continent is Australias largest source region of migrants, providing 23 per cent of the migration program, while 18.3 per cent of migrants come from the north of Asia. More than a quarter of our nations migrants were born in an Asian nation and nearly 1.5 million Australians are fluent in one or more Asian languages, including Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Hindi, Punjabi, Indonesian, Korean, Tagalog and Japanese, Chris Bowen said. This means that Australia is uniquely placed to strengthen ties with Asian nations. Tourism from Asia injects billions of dollars into the economy every year and piloting new streamlined visa processes will encourage more people from the region to consider Australia as a destination of choice. We are making it easier than ever for tourists from the Asian region to visit Australia and contribute to our economic and cultural growth, Chris Bowen said. We need to be able to take advantage of the expected increase in regional travel across Asia and the subsequent emerging tourist markets.

To facilitate this, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship is expanding its network of service and delivery partners to support online visa lodgement, multiple entry visas and longer visa validity periods. Visitors from China are of particular focus and the 2011 Memorandum of Understanding to strengthen tourism cooperation between our countries will support a growing travel market, Chris Bowen said. Students from abroad boost Australias economy by billions every year. In 2011, there were more than 550,000 international student enrolments (77 per cent from within the Asian region) in Australian education institutions. We want to ensure that future leaders in the Asian region who are educated at our worldclass institutions have positive experiences, fostering people-to-people links and supporting the cultural ties that protect our nations interests in the region, Chris Bowen said. Streamlining the student visa assessment process will make it easier for people who want to study here, while post-study work rights for bachelor degree and PhD graduates will encourage skilled people to contribute to Australias development. The rise of Australias close neighbours has the potential to greatly benefit our nation over the coming century, Chris Bowen said. The Gillard Governments improvements to our migration systems and visa processes will mean that we are well prepared to welcome people from across Asia who will contribute to our economy and culture. Media Contacts: Bill Kyriakopoulos 0400 510 802 / Laura Stevens 0432 833 769

The Hon Simon Crean MP

Minister for Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government Minister for the Arts
Sunday, 28 October, 2012


Australias regions will drive stronger links with Asia to seize the economic opportunities that emerge during the next century, Regional Development Minister Simon Crean said today. Mr Crean said the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper paves the way for regions to build on the significant progress made by the Federal Government in embedding localism across the country. The Federal Government is partnering with state and local governments to deliver location-based solutions to ensure each part of regional Australia can get its slice of the action during the Asian century, Mr Crean said. Many regions have already established a subnational approach to trade, with region-to-region arrangements building on people-to-people contact. A multiplicity of sister-city and sister-state links with Asia already exists across Australia, with over 100 of these relationships with Japan and more than 80 with China. The White Paper recognises the opportunity to take what weve established and maximise the benefits. We will continue to support stronger relationships between state and local government and their regional counterparts. The localism approach has been agreed by the Council of Australian Governments (COAG) and is reflected in the White Paper, which recognises that regions must diversify their economic base to maintain their competitive edge. Every region in Australia is looking at the opportunities opening up in Asiafrom right across northern Australia, down to Tasmania and through the Upper Spencer Gulf. Across northern Australia, economic growth will underpin the expansion of Darwin, Kununurra and north Queensland as regional hubs and gateways for trade with Asian nations.

The Northern Australia Ministerial Forum, which I chair, will also continue to support other strategic growth hubs in northern Queensland and Western Australia. Mr Crean said the challenge for regions was to turn their comparative advantages into a competitive global edge. The Regional Development Australia Fund (RDAF) has already invested $350 million in 81 partnership projects with a leveraged value of $1.2 billion, he said. Last week I announced the opening of RDAF rounds three and four, committing another $225 million to leveraged projects that deliver a strong regional reachincluding $50 million specifically targeted at small towns with a population of 30,000 or less. RDAF will continue to drive a cultural change in regional funding by focusing on priorities of persistence and projects that stack-up, partnership and leverage, and regional reach. Media contact: Glen Atwell 0403 949 599



Asian Century grants scheme to fund business development

Trade and Competitiveness Minister Craig Emerson today announced a $6 million grants scheme to boost business organisations links into Asia. The Asian Century Business Engagement Plan is one of numerous initiatives in the Governments White Paper on Australia in the Asian Century, released today. Under the Engagement Plan, grants will be allocated over four years to business organisations for projects that assist Australian companies to sell into Asias growing middle class markets and to participate in regional value chains. The organisation of business missions and trade fairs, for example, would qualify for assistance. Austrade will administer the program and provide support through its Asian network of offices. Many small and medium-sized businesses in Australia find it difficult to take advantage of the immense opportunities opening up in the region, Dr Emerson said. Business organisations such as chambers of commerce are adept at helping companies identify new customers in Asia, and in building long-term relationships. The Australian chambers of commerce located in Asian business hubs and other business associations here in Australia already have strong profiles and extensive networks in Asia, he said. By providing extra support for the work of these business organisations, the Government will help to build the personal relationships so vital to doing business in Asia. Governments can help create the conditions for business relationships, but ultimately success depends on the businesses themselves, Dr Emerson said.



Australia to pursue free trade area of the Asia-Pacific

The Gillard Government will position Australia as a connecting rod between Latin America and Asia in pursuit of a free trade area of the Asia-Pacific. Australia has been in talks with Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile about the possibility of a trade deal with these countries of the Pacific Alliance, as it is known, that could extend to other countries in the Asian region. Trade and Competitiveness Minister Craig Emerson said Australia would seek observer status in the ongoing trade negotiations involving the four Pacificfacing nations of Latin America. These nations are like-minded with Australia as open traders and are interested in Australia connecting them to dynamic Asian economies through our familiarity with countries of the region, Dr Emerson said. Australia will also continue negotiations for a Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement involving 11 Asia-Pacific countries. Mexico, Chile and Peru are also part of these negotiations. And the Government will participate in the November 2012 launch of a Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) involving the ASEAN countries, China, Japan, South Korea, India, New Zealand and Australia. Australia already has a high-quality free trade agreement with ASEAN and New Zealand. The Government sees these various negotiations as pathways to the vision of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) forum of a Free Trade Area of the Asia-Pacific (FTAAP). Negotiations in each of these forums can add momentum to the others in a process of competitive liberalisation, Dr Emerson said. The White Paper sets a goal for Australia to increase the value of its trade links with Asia, from one-quarter of GDP in 2011 to at least one-third by 2025.

The Government will continue with its bilateral negotiations with China, Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and India. It will also continue to play a leading role in the global trade talks under the auspices of the World Trade Organization in Geneva as members pursue the new pathways approach advocated by Australia for completing the Doha Development Round.
Media Contact: Mark Mulligan - 0413250632



Australia to devote more trade and investment resources to Asia

Australia is rising to the Asian Century challenge by devoting more of its diplomatic and commercial resources to the region, Trade and Competitiveness Minister Craig Emerson said today. Austrade, the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation, the Export Market Development Grants scheme and Australias diplomatic efforts will all be concentrated more heavily on Asia following the release of the White Paper on Australia in the Asian Century. Dr Emerson said the rise of the Asian middle class offered unprecedented opportunities for manufacturers, farmers, miners and service providers. The shift in the global centre of economic activity to Asia presents a once-inlifetime opportunity for Australian businesses to tap into immense new markets, Dr Emerson said. As growth in countries such as China, India and Indonesia moves to greater reliance on domestic consumption, increasingly affluent consumers will demand the high-quality food, manufactured goods and services that Australia provides so well. To make the most of these opportunities, the Gillard Government is deploying more of the countrys talent and resources into Asia. The Export Finance and Insurance Corporations new mandate will ensure more of its resources are directed to addressing market failures that impede small and medium-sized exporters in emerging and frontier markets such as China, Indonesia, India, Mongolia and Kazakhstan. This builds on the Governments reforms to Austrade that increased the level of its overseas representation in Asias emerging and frontier markets.

Recalibrations to the Export Market Development Grants scheme will allow grant recipients to make eight claims for promotional costs in Asia, up from the existing seven claims. The Australian Government will appoint a dedicated Ambassador to ASEAN, to be based in Jakarta, to strengthen Australias ties with 10 ASEAN neighbours. The Government recently announced a new consulate in Chengdu, western China. As resources allow, new posts will also be opened in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia; Phuket, Thailand; and in eastern Indonesia. Austrade already has an office in Ulaanbaatar and in Shenyang, western China. And the appointment of a Resource and Energy Counsellor in Beijing will assist Australian companies to capitalise on Chinas demand for minerals and energy resources. Personal relationships, good information and sound advice are always important to doing business, Dr Emerson said. In many Asian societies, they are essential. Thats why we are making such an effort to get more people and support on the ground across the region.

S e n a t o r t h e H o n. J o e L u d w i g

Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Senator for Queensland 28 October 2012

Agriculture key to Australias role in the Asian century

Primary producers, agricultural businesses and regional communities will be big winners as Australia positions itself as a leading food and fibre supplier to the growing Asian marketplace in the Asian century. Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, Senator Joe Ludwig, said the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper will strengthen our producers and processors global reputations as competitive, innovative and sustainable suppliers of high-quality food and agricultural products to Asia. Australia will also play its part in ensuring food security in the region. The increasing demand among Asias middle class for high-quality food and agricultural products presents significant opportunities for Australias primary industries, Minister Ludwig said. Between now and 2025 the Australian Government will put a series of grass roots programs, plans and policies into action to position our agriculture sector for the opportunities presented by our Asian neighbours. Much of this work has already begun. Minister Ludwig said Australias first National Food Plan would drive the changes necessary to support our food value chain domestically and capitalise on the growing potential for food producers and processors internationally. The Food Plan will focus on our food system from paddock to plate. That means ensuring consumers here have access to nutritious and affordable food, and that our food sector can make the most of the growing demand from consumers globally, Minister Ludwig said. The Governments new Rural Research and Development Strategy complements this work by boosting the productivity and sustainability of our primary industries through an ongoing commitment to R&D and increased collaboration, science and innovation. Ongoing reforms to Australias world class biosecurity system will also allow for more efficient movement of people and goods across our borders while maintaining the protections we need. This includes adopting a risk-based approach that manages threats effectively, while reducing impediments to legitimate trade and travel. The next steps to be taken by Government will focus on increasing participation in Asias markets and providing services to assist food and agricultural exporters. The Government will support two-way investment with the Asian region in food and food processing, agriculture-related transport infrastructure, natural resource management and water conservation to help drive the development of Australias regional and remote areas, especially in Northern Australia and Tasmania. The White Paper looks to ensure our producers and processors can grow their businesses sustainably by making efficient use of our soil, water and energy, Minister Ludwig said. We will also support primary producers by improving market access and promoting free trade through trade negotiations, existing inter-governmental agreements, government-to-government relationships and our overseas networks. The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper has a vision for Australias food production systems to be globally competitive, with productive and sustainable agriculture and food businesses. The release of the White Paper showcases the opportunities for Australia to benefit from the Asian century, Minister Ludwig said. We will continue to work closely with key agricultural stakeholders to realise Australias vision for agriculture and food in the Asian century.

Media contact: Melissa Patch 0418 734 413 or Katana Smith 0459 813 574

Stephen Smith MP Minister for Defence M E D I A R E L E A S E

28 October 2012 DEFENCE AND SECURITY IN THE ASIAN CENTURY The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper emphasises that the ongoing prosperity of Australia is irrevocably tied to the sustainable security of our diverse region. The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper outlines a long-term strategy to position Australia to benefit from the opportunities of the Asian century, while managing future challenges. It outlines the Governments national objectives and pathways to building sustainable security in our region, including: maintaining a comprehensive approach to security, including through the release of a new Defence White Paper in the first half of 2013; promoting cooperative arrangements among major powers in the region including promoting the development of the expanded East Asia Summit as a crucial regional institution; working with the United States to ensure it continues to have a strong and consistent presence in the region, including through enhanced practical cooperation between Australia and the United States (US); supporting Chinas full participation in the regions strategic, political and economic development; Maintain Australia's strong support for global, regional and bilateral security frameworks and norms based on the United Nations Charter, including through our membership of the UN Security Council; and pursuing practical cooperation and building local capability with regional partners across a range of issues such as terrorism, people smuggling, transnational crime, counterproliferation and disaster management.

Mr Smiths Office: Andrew Porter (02) 6277 7800 or 0419 474 392

Page 2

These national objectives will be reflected in the policy goals and priorities to be set out in the 2013 Defence White Paper. A key theme of the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper is the scale and pace of change in our region. The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper also identifies new opportunities for Australia to pursue deeper strategic and security partnerships. The 2013 Defence White Paper will consider in detail the implications of the changing strategic circumstances in our region for Australias Defence and national security, including: The ongoing strategic shift to our region, the Asia Pacific and the Indian Ocean Rim, particularly the shift of economic weight to our region; The US re-balance to the Asia Pacific and Australias enhanced practical cooperation with the US pursuant to our 60 year old Alliance relationship; The ADFs operational drawdown from Afghanistan, East Timor and Solomon Islands; Australias own Force Posture Review the first in a quarter of a century; The ongoing adverse effects of the Global Financial Crisis, which have continued to have a significant deleterious impact on the global economy. The Government will continue to increase its efforts in the period ahead to deepen Defence cooperation, including joint exercises and other forms of engagement, with our friends and partners in our region. This will also be a key theme of the 2013 Defence White Paper.

Mr Smiths Office: Andrew Porter (02) 6277 7800 or 0419 474 392


28 October 2012


Foreign Minister Bob Carr today welcomed the release of the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper as a clear demonstration of the Gillard Governments commitment to strengthen Australian engagement with the region. This is a critical moment in Australias engagement with Asia, Senator Carr said. The White Paper delivers a roadmap for promoting Australian interests and engagement with our regional partners. To achieve this, the White Paper includes the following initiatives: The appointment of a dedicated Jakarta-based Ambassador to ASEAN; and Planning for an Australian Embassy in Ulaanbaatar (Mongolia) and consulates in Shenyang (China), Phuket (Thailand) and eastern Indonesia.

A resident Ambassador to ASEAN enhances Australias ability to work with ASEAN on priority regional political and economic issues, Senator Carr said. Strengthening our diplomatic network in other parts of Asia is also vital to Australias long-term security and prosperity. Senator Carr said Australia would also develop comprehensive country strategies in consultation with the community, setting out objectives and priorities for Australias relationships, with a focus on China, India, Indonesia, Japan and the Republic of Korea (South Korea). We need to continue to build our engagement with major countries in Asia through regular meetings with government and business leaders, and in the exchange of people and ideas. Senator Carr said education was central to the Governments strategy to strengthen links between Australians and the region.

Over the next five years, 12,000 Australia Awards (Asian Century) will be provided to undertake inward and outward study or professional development between Australia and nations in Asia, he said. Senator Carr said the Government would expand work and holiday programs with countries in Asia, starting by adding 1,000 places in the Work and Holiday Visa program with Indonesia.

Ministers Office: 0435 658 623

The Hon Simon Crean MP

Minister for Regional Australia, Regional Development and Local Government Minister for the Arts
Sunday, 28 October, 2012


Arts Minister Simon Crean says the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper sets a clear objective for cultural diplomacy and exchange to drive a stronger, deeper and broader engagement with Asian nations. Mr Crean said cultural diplomacy is vital to Australias engagement across the region to build trust, understanding and confidence in our cultural, political, security and economic relationships. As home to the worlds oldest living culture and welcoming to the greatest diversity of cultures, Australia has unique cultural strengths that underpin values of respect, understanding and inclusion this is crucial in Asia, which is a region deeply respectful of culture and respect for others, he said. The Federal Government will work with arts and media organisations to better coordinate their engagement with Asia. Broadcasters ABC and SBS will grow their roles in sharing news and content, and our national collecting institutions with take a more strategic approach in connecting with Asia. The Australian International Cultural Council, our key cultural diplomacy body which I chair alongside Foreign Affairs Minister Bob Carr, will also be revamped with a new strategic focus. We will improve government activities that support our artists succeeding in Asia including through the Australia Council and Screen Australia, to explore more points of contact and collaboration. Mr Crean said Australian arts and culture are already heavily engaged with Asian countries. Through the international program OzFest, which is currently being staged in India, Australias creative industries are forming part of a whole-of-government advocacy and public diplomacy strategy, he said. The Sydney Symphony Orchestra is touring six cities in China to an enthusiastic response which they are documenting through a live blog. Bangarra Dance Theatre regularly tours Asia while the exhibition in Japan of Indigenous painter Emily Kame Kngwarreye curated by the National Museum of Australia are further examples of Australian arts success in Asia.

In Australia locally curated events like Adelaide Festival Centres OzAsia Festival, Broomes Festival of the Pearl and Destination NSWs Parramasala Festival are showcasing arts and culture from across the Asian region, while the National Portrait Gallerys contemporary Asian self-portrait exhibition will tour regions and capital cities. We have laid a solid foundation but more can be done a strengthen business, political and trade relationships. Arts and culture are the essence of identity and how we understand each other people-to-people. Mr Crean will visit China later this year to sign the 2012-14 Australia-China cultural implementation plan as part of the 40th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the two countries. I also travel to India next month with a program of both business and diplomatic meetings which includes OzFest, which in line with the White Paper, provides a focus for cultural diplomacy to build a deeper and stronger relationship with that country, he said. Media contact: Glen Atwell 0403 949 599

Media release
Senator Kate Lundy
Minister for Sport, Minister for Multicultural Affairs, Minister Assisting for Industry and Innovation

28 October 2012

Sport a powerful unifier in the Asian Century

The Australia in the Asian Century White Paper highlights the huge potential to use sport to strengthen Australias connections in Asia, Minister for Sport Senator Kate Lundy, said today. The release of the White Paper confirms the power of sport to bridge language and cultural barriers and serve as a platform to build relationships, Senator Lundy said. The White Paper focuses on positioning Australia to maximise the benefits of the global economic and strategic shift to Asia, Senator Lundy said. Already we see Australian sports taking advantage of the burgeoning Asian market including Tennis Australia through the Trophy Tour and the inclusion of Football Federation Australia in the Asian Championship. In this context, there is potential to use sport strategically to leverage a range of benefits through better social, cultural and economic and trade relationships. Senator Lundy said Australia shared a passion for sport with Asia and this would only be enhanced with the upcoming Asian Football Confederation Asian Cup and International Cricket Council Cricket World Cup in 2015. The 2015 Asian Cup and Cricket World Cup are expected to draw a global audience of more than 1 billion people respectively and provide an unprecedented opportunity to showcase Australia in Asia, Senator Lundy said. These key events will provide significant business and trade opportunities for Australia. With a strong link between sport and industry in Asia, Australian business has the unique opportunity to make strong connections through sport and open doors to new markets. Tourism, transport, construction, food production, creative industries and many other sections of the Australian economy stand to benefit from growing our sporting engagement with Asia and Im confident this engagement will drive a new wave of growth, employment and prosperity in the Asian century. Media contact: Jessica Hill on 0407 926 077