Establishment of the joint Business Leader’s Forum between the Australia-Latin America Business Council (ALABC) and the Australia-Mexico New Zealand Business Council (ANZMEX)

By Sarah Carroll from ALABC

On Thursday 12th of August in Mexico City and Friday 13th of August in Sydney, Australia, a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) was signed ‘virtually’ between the Australia-Latin America Business Council (ALABC) and the Australia-Mexico and New Zealand Business Council (ANZMEX) for the establishment of the Joint Australia-Mexico Business Leaders Forum (AMEXBF), to foster closer friendships and promote economic, trade and investment between Australia and Mexico.

The signing ceremony was co-hosted by the Chairman of the Board of Directors of ALABC Mr. Richard Andrews and by the President of ANZMEX Mr. Timothy Callahan and included the participation of the Ambassador of Australia in Mexico HE Remo Moretta and the Ambassador of Mexico in Australia, Mr. Eduardo Pena-Haller. The virtual signing ceremony was also witnessed by a number senior industry representatives with significant businesses in both countries.

In his welcoming remarks the President of ANZMEX Timothy Callaghan highlighted that the signing of the MOU marks a new milestone in the consolidation of the business relations between Australia and Mexico and that the main objective is to provide a regular forum for the private sector of both countries, to discuss more systematic bilateral business promotional initiatives that lead to increase trade in goods and services and investment between the Mexico and Australia. He added that “the current trade and investment figures demonstrate that the existing potential remains largely untapped. An essential role for the Australia-Mexico Business Leaders Forum is to encourage investor and business confidence and strengthen relations to establish the bases for stable growth that is beneficial for both countries”.

The President of ALABC, Richard Andrews mentioned that this is the third binational business advisory group created by ALABC, following Chile and Central America. The bilateral business councils are unique instances of private sector cooperation, coordination and consultation whose objective is to increase business between two countries. They are made up of senior businessmen and executives of companies that have significant investments or trade flows with the countries that act as counterparts. 

They are an effective tool for business diplomacy and complement the efforts made by DFAT, ALABC along with key industry player such as COALAR, Austrade, Global Victoria, Trade and Investment Queensland and their Chilean counterparts.

Andrews also mentioned “Latin America has been growing in economic importance for Australia in recent years. Mexico is a bigger economy than Indonesia and by 2030 will be in the top 10 economies of the world. This basis for exchange has only been bolstered through both countries’ membership in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership – an accord that also includes Chile and Peru.  Australia and Mexico also shared common goals in APEC and the G20.  Mexico is also a member of the Pacific Alliance, a growing market for Australian goods and services.

Mining, Clean energy and Infrastructure are a major focus for the  government and industries are wanting to attract and partner with Australian technology exporters on new projects.

“The importance of the MOU signed between the two industry bodies, through which a strategic alliance is established represents a unique opportunity for Australian companies to access key players and decision makers in the Mexican private sector. On the other hand, there has never been a better time given the reasonable success that Australia has had in managing the health crisis caused by Covid-19, the relative stability, medical and economic, offered by Australia, to explore opportunities here”.

Australian companies with presence in Mexico are BHP, Azure Minerals, Orica, Macquarie Bank, to new a few.

ANZMEX is a trilateral business platform to provide a forum and support services to explore and promote collaboration between Australia, New Zealand and Mexico. The framework it offers promotes relevant contacts and information exchange, develops sector interest groups for individuals and organisations, and provides practical support services for all members. Our main differentiator from other English-speaking, European and Latin-American chambers is we provide – due to our size and structure – a personalised service to all our members. We also enable our affiliates -via events and activities – to have a first-rate interaction with the Ambassadors and other diplomats and officials from both Australia and New Zealand.

ALABC was established in 1989 as a Non-for-Profit association and our membership is comprised of companies and organisations ranging from large multinational corporations to education and research institutions, SMEs, sole traders and professionals, who are at the forefront of forging business relations between Australia and Latin America.

Click on this link to find some screenshots taken the day of the event: