Although founded in 2008, the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Korea (AustCham) started with humble beginnings almost 20 years ago as the Australian Business Group in Korea. Now AustCham Korea remains the peak networking organisation promoting Australian business interests in Korea, with a membership of over 200 in the services, manufacturing, energy and finance sectors. AustCham Korea continues to facilitate the development of the Australia-Korea business relationship by being a representative body for the Australian business community in Korea to the mutual benefit of both countries.
Furthermore, AustCham Korea is also part of a larger network of AustChams in the Asia region called Australian Business Asia (ABA). With these sister organizations, AustCham is able to take a proactive role in representing members on issues that affect Australian businesses across Asia.
In 2011 AustCham can see strong progress towards the successful completion of the Australia-Korea Free Trade negotiations towards the end of the year. Evidence of both the progress and importance of the talks can be seen in the successful meeting between Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Korean President Lee Myung-bak in Seoul during the 60th Anniversary of Australia’s involvement in the Korean War in April this year. Prime Minister Gillard also met with many high-level Korean businessmen, including POSCO Chairman and AustCham supporter, Chung Joon Yang, to hear their comments about the future of Korea–Australia trade and business relations.
“Austcham Korea continues to facilitate the development of the Australia-Korea business relationship by being a representative body for the Australian business community in Korea to the mutual benefit of both countries”
AustCham will continue to provide its members with up-to-date information about the progress through forums, luncheons and its regular publications.
Officially designated as the Australia–Korea Year of Friendship, 2011 celebrates 50 years of diplomatic ties between the two countries. In this very important year, AustCham Korea continues to advocate for an FTA between Australia and Korea to promote the existing flourishing trade between the two countries, which has a value of over $A27 billion. Korea is Australia’s third-largest export market and fourth-largest trading partner, reflecting the valuable relationship both countries enjoy.
The official launch of the Year of Friendship was both sponsored by AustCham and well attended by the chamber’s members. AustCham is also supporting the year through its regular AustCham Breakfast Forums, with speakers from both Australia and Korea, discussing major topics such as investing in Korea, the G20 Meeting in Seoul and the 2012 Federal Budget. Additionally, AustCham hosts Gold Members Luncheons, where in a more relaxed atmosphere its Gold Members are able to connect with high-level Korean government advisors. Finally, AustCham has monthly sundowners at which members have a chance to get to know one another in a more relaxed environment.
On October 10, 2011 AustCham will celebrate the great achievements of Australian and Korean businesses working together in its annual Australian Business Awards. These awards will highlight the excellent ways in which Australian and Korean businesses have worked together during the Year of Friendship.
AustCham Korea is immensely proud to be serving Australian and Korean businesses this year during the 2011 Korea Australia Year of Friendship.