The Hon Richard Marles MP, Minister for Trade, announced $35 million in funding over 10 years to support a National Centre for Asia Capability. The new Centre will be a collaborative effort, combining the expertise of government, business and university sectors to build an Asia capable Australian workforce through innovative programs, cutting-edge research and the development of unparalleled regional networks.
The Centre has strong support from the business community and was a key recommendation from an Asialink Taskforce, chaired by ANZ CEO, Mike Smith, which released a national strategy for developing an Asia capable workforce in 2012.
The Centre will be run by Asialink (The University of Melbourne) in partnership with the University of New South Wales (UNSW Australia) and the private sector, and will initially be located in Melbourne and Sydney.
The Centre supports two of the national objectives in the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper aimed at ensuring that:
decision makers in Australia have a deeper knowledge and expertise of countries in our region; and that
Australia’s businesses are recognised globally for their excellence and ability to operate successfully in Asian markets.