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Celebrating 50 years of trade with Japan - Australia's best customer

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Media Release

Media Release

Mr Peter Corish, Chair of the Australia-Japan Foundation (AJF)
said the 50th anniversary of the Australia-Japan Agreement on
Commerce was time to celebrate Australia's single most
important trading relationship.

"Few people are aware that Japan has been
Australia's best customer for the past 40 years.
Australia sells more goods to Japan than it does to China and the
United States combined. One in every five of our exports
dollars is generated by our merchandise trade with

"As the Prime Minister recently said publicly, the
Commerce Agreement set in motion the most successful bilateral
trade relationship in Australian history, and has made an enormous
contribution to the prosperity of both our nations", Mr
Corish said.

"I am very pleased that the Minister for Trade, Mr Truss,
has been able to join with Japanese Trade Minister, Mr Akira Amari,
during the APEC Trade Ministers' Meeting in Cairns to
celebrate the anniversary officially on 6 July

"The trade relationship has provided the foundation for a
much broader partnership between the two countries. Today we
enjoy strong social, cultural and educational ties with
Japan. The people-to-people links have infused bilateral
relations with considerable warmth and friendship", Mr Corish

To recognise the importance of our economic partnership with
Japan, the AJF in association with the Australia-Japan Research
Centre, will establish an Australian Network of Economists with
research interests in Japan. The network will create links
between economic scholars and provide a forum for discussion on the
Japanese economy. Professor Jenny Corbett, Executive Director
of the Australia-Japan Research Centre, will launch the network in
Canberra as part of the commemorations on 6 July.

The Australia-Japan Foundation was established by the Australian
Government in 1976 to encourage a closer relationship between the
peoples of Australia and Japan. In December 2006 it was
reformed as a non-statutory bilateral foundation with the
Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. Over the past thirty
years, the Foundation has played an important role promoting
community, professional and institutional links between the two
countries through its cultural, educational and exchange

Further information about the AJF is available at

Media Inquiries: DFAT Media Liaison on 02 6261 1555

Last Updated: 19 September 2014
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