The Minister for Trade and Investment, Andrew Robb, today announced the membership of a high-calibre Trade and Investment Policy Advisory Council (TIPAC).

Mr Robb has established the 20-member TIPAC as an important source of advice on the challenges and opportunities involved in advancing the Abbott Government’s ambitious trade and investment agenda.

“This group brings considerable horsepower to the table as well as a unique and high quality commercial perspective to the task of advancing trade and investment,” he said.

“TIPAC members are all highly respected in their fields and offer insight and expertise across all of the areas of Australia’s key strengths. As a government we are determined to leverage these strengths to help drive sustainable growth.”

Among those key sectors represented are resources and energy, food and agribusiness, banking and finance, international education and tourism.

Expertise on trade and investment with North Asia will come from Yasushi Takahashi, Chairman and Managing Director of Mitsui (Australia) Limited; Mark Chiba, Group Chairman of the Longreach Group; Alex Harvey, CEO of Macquarie Bank’s operations in Asia; and Robin Chambers AO, who has unsurpassed experience in China.

In food and agribusiness, Mr Robb has secured the involvement of Philippa Purser (Managing Director of Cargill Australia); Alison Watkins (Group Managing Director of Coca-Cola Amatil); Joy Linton (Non-Executive Director of Bega Cheese) and Mauro Balzarini (Managing Director of Wellard Group Holdings). David Knox (CEO of Santos) and Roy Krzywosinski (Managing Director of Chevron Australia) will advise on resources exports.

Peter O’Brien (Parkhorn Tourism and Leisure); Rowan Craigie (CEO of Crown Limited); and Graham Burke, the strategic force behind Village Roadshow, will advise on entertainment and tourism. In international education, Mr Robb has appointed Professor Sandra Harding from the university sector and Claire Field from the vocational education sector.

Mehrdad Baghai, an international expert on new technology and global business, will provide high-level strategic advice. Paul Espie (founder of Pacific Road Capital Management) and Ashok Jacob (Chairman of Ellerston Capital) will contribute on investment issues. Mr Robb has also appointed Colette Garnsey from The Just Group and Jason Yeap OAM, Chairman of Mering Corporation, “for their creative and entrepreneurial flair”.

TIPAC will meet for the first time on Friday 6 June 2014 at Parliament House in Canberra.

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