Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence
South America: Why Not?
Forget the stereotyped perceptions of a region beset by hyper-inflation,
economic chaos and dictatorships. Focus instead on today's reality.
Focus on a region with a substantial number of consumers, and ones with
buying power at that.
Chairman, Australia-Latin America Business Council1
2.1 Ask yourself what does the term South America portray to you. Is it a region that is backward, of countries where revolutions are a way of life, where there are major security problems, poor standards of living, poverty, isolation and very little sophistication? Certainly the Committee found in examining Australia's trade and investment relationship with South America that the above perceptions of the region are commonly held ones and do little to encourage Australian businesses to look to South America for business opportunities.
2.2 In Australia in the 1980s the dollar was floated precipitating a currency devaluation of almost 40 per cent. Businesses had to restructure and the economy required greater exports in an increasingly competitive global market. This major shift caused a significant amount of pain but Australia, through its businesses, has managed to win export opportunities around the world. Australian businesses have tended to look northwards, and while there have been good reasons for the particular focus on Asia, in so doing, businesses have overlooked the potential to the east.
2.3 The financial volatility in East Asia, which began in the second half of 1997 and continued into 1998, was a rude awakening to commerce. It showed that markets could be wiped out and businesses forced to look at their traditional markets more critically. Australian businesses took the East Asian crisis in their stride due to the strong domestic economy with its strengthening domestic demand, and by looking to non-traditional markets for their products and services.
2.4 With the publication of the Government's first
Trade Outcomes and Objectives Statement (TOOS'97) in February 1997,
a more strategic approach to trade policy and performance was set in place
with the aim to improve the Australian Government's efforts in strengthening
Australia's trade and investment performance.
2.5 Chile and the Mercosur countries were identified in TOOS'97 as one of five emerging markets for Australian exports. Although only accounting for a small share of Australian exports the emerging markets are recognised as having the potential to become more important.2
2.6 In this year's TOOS3 Peru has been profiled as an emerging market of importance for Australian exporters in the medium term.
2.7 The Trade Sub-Committee's visit to eight South American countries reinforced the evidence it had received, both in submissions and at public hearings. The Committee is convinced that South America offers enormous trade and investment opportunities and that the pursuit of market share is an imperative.
2.8 The visit confirmed that there are as many business opportunities in South America as in Asia. In South America, the size of the market is some 338 million people, with around 13 million households enjoying middle class status with a buying power in excess of US$20,000 per annum. Furthermore the level of education and the level of social development has the potential to allow the South American market to produce at least returns as attractive as Asia.
2.9 In examining South American markets an understanding of the characteristics is essential and from the assessment provided by Austrade through its SWOT4 analysis it is clear that the region deserves sophisticated exploration by Australian business.
Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats
2.10 In its submission to the inquiry, Austrade pointed out that in April 1999 its Trade Commissioners met to map out a three-year forward strategy for the development of trade and investment between Australia and South America:
To understand how various factors impact on Australia's competitiveness in South American markets, the Trade Commissioners looked at what new opportunities can be exploited successfully by Australian firms, and how best to assist Australian companies to succeed in South America.5
2.11 As part of this process a SWOT analysis was conducted and this analysis is examined under the respective headings.
2.12 Australia has in place a number of strengths that facilitate increased trade and investment links with South America. These strengths are:6
Austrade network in South America.
2.13 The Austrade has a network of four posts in South America - Buenos Aires in Argentina; So Paulo in Brazil; Santiago in Chile and Lima in Peru.
Access to Export Market Development Grants (EMDGs).
2.14 The EMDG scheme provides financial assistance to encourage Australian small to medium sized businesses to seek and develop export markets. Under the scheme businesses are reimbursed for part of the export marketing costs they incur. Austrade manages the scheme.
The availability of the Export Finance and Insurance Corporation (EFIC).
2.15 The role of EFIC is to use its insurance and finance products to help increase Australian exports with a focus on those exports that banks and commercial insurers may have difficulty covering due to the size of the transaction or the level of risk.
Australia's business environment.
2.16 Austrade points out that Australia is seen to have a good track record in regulation, fairness, transparency and the settling of disputes, and the sound and significant Australian economy is encouraging South American corporate leaders to initiate business with Australia.
Australia's economic and sectoral growth pattern.
2.17 Australia's economic and sectoral growth pattern makes it well matched to South American market needs.7 Moreover Australia's excellent capability in areas such as mining and infrastructure are increasingly relevant to South America.
Qantas direct flights to Buenos Aires, Argentina.
2.18 In November 1998 Qantas introduced direct flights to Buenos Aires and Austrade points out that this initiative is encouraging Australian businesses to look east to South America. There is the need for these flights to be promoted vigorously. The Committee sees the Australian Tourist Commission (ATC) as having a greater role to play in this regard.
Strength of Australia's services sector.
2.19 Austrade made three points in commenting on the strength
of this sector, namely:
[the services sector is] a large and growing part of the Australian
economy comprising 20 percent of Australia's overall exports with expanding
Tourism and education are our most successful global service exporters,
but also our exporters in construction, power generation, scientific
research, services to mining, health-care, business administration and
consulting, cultural, entertainment and recreation, environmental, transport
and storage, all will find significant opportunities in South American
Service exporters are highly regarded for their technical sophistication
A corps of executives seasoned in the demands of international business.
2.20 While Austrade did not elaborate on this strength
in its submission, the Committee notes that to underscore this strength
there are now many Australian companies based in South America providing
a strong corps of seasoned executives.
Established beachhead of Australian firms with a presence in the
2.21 In elaborating on this strength Austrade noted
- Several of the major miners are established in the South American
market and, at the time of the submission, existing Australian foreign
investment in the South American mining sector was estimated to
be over A$3 billion;
- Construction and consulting;
- Entertainment industry (movie theatres);
- Port management and distribution; and
- Catering/cold storage.9
Australians of South American descent and continued links with their
2.22 The last Australian census in 1996 showed there
were some 83,000 Australian residents born in South America, Central
America and the Caribbean. The Chileans are the largest group to have
relocated to Australia, followed by the Uruguayans.
Perception in South America that Australian products and services
are high quality and very competitive.
2.23 The Trade Sub-Committee on its visit to South
America found that where there was knowledge of Australian products
and services they were extremely well regarded.
2.24 Austrade identified ten factors that hindered
increased trade and investment with South America.10
Outdated perceptions of the market by the Australian business community.
2.25 Australians need to shed their outmoded perceptions
about South America and the difficulties posed by the South American
markets. The majority of Australians know very little about South America
and this lack of familiarity is holding back strong prospects. Australian
business needs to broaden its view to take in the merits of doing business
with South America.
Australian business community remains preoccupied with traditional
2.26 Australia has a long history of looking northwards
for markets. The long-term focus on Asia as the marketplace for Australian
business received a blow with the Asian economic downturn in 1997. Australian
business needs to widen its field of vision and look eastwards to South
America for opportunities if they are serious about exporting.11
Our competitors, the US, Canada, Europe and Asia are already in South
Perception in South America that Australian manufacturers do not
have the capacity and experience needed to participate in the South
2.27 While in South America the Trade Sub-Committee
was able to profile the capacity and expertise that Australia has in
a range of fields to government officials and semi-government agencies.
The opportunity to promote Australian capability and experience has
raised awareness and should assist in putting Australia on the map for
consideration as a destination for future roadshows.
Australian firms have been late entrants to the market.
2.28 Unfortunately this is the case especially in
a number of South American markets. Australia has a sizeable presence
in Chile with some 42 Australian or Australian-affiliated companies
based in Santiago. However in Brazil, where major steps have been taken
towards modernisation since the early 1990s, Australian business has
been slow to take advantage of the opportunities in infrastructure development.
There is little time left.
2.29 What is very apparent to the Committee is that
the lack of knowledge about the South American region or any of the
countries provides its own set of inertias and the tyranny of distance
is one of them. The more knowledge gained about, or even to undertake
a visit to a particular South American country, will lessen the perceptions
of distance and other physical disincentives clouding an examination
of business opportunities. The perceived problem of distance is more
of a myth than a reality as Australia deals and trades with other areas
happily and successfully that are further away than South America.
2.30 The issue of time differences, where for instance
Buenos Aires is 13 hours behind Australian Eastern Standard Time, is
one that not only confronts business with South America but it also
applies to doing business in Canada, the US, the UK and Europe. It is
a fact of life in undertaking business offshore.
Australian financial institutions have limited experience of these
2.31 The only Australian bank that operated in South
America was the ANZ bank. It recently pulled out of the market. Banco
Santander Central Hispano SA (BSCH) has a representative office in Sydney
which it established in 1990. BSCH is Spain's largest commercial bank
with total assets of US$350 billion. It controls one of the largest
banking networks in Latin America with subsidiary banks in Venezuela,
Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, Chile, Paraguay, Brazil, Uruguay and Argentina.
The bank 'has been at the forefront of promoting Latin American markets
in Australia and is actively involved in providing banking services
to a large number of the Australian companies that have operations in
Double taxation agreements are not in place.
2.32 Double taxation treaties promote trade and investment
in three ways:
- They increase certainty in the application of taxation rules;
- They limit source country taxation on interest, dividends and
- They limit the tax on enterprises that trade with the other country,
without establishing a base in the country.13
2.33 Australia and Argentina signed a double taxation
agreement in August 1999 that came into force on 30 December 1999 and
negotiations are a high priority with Chile given Australia's substantial
level of investment there.
Australia is not part of South American regional or sub-regional
free trade agreements.
2.34 Regional and sub-regional free trade agreements
are a significant factor in regional development in South America. As
DFAT points out South American governments argue that regional free
trade agreements play a role in reinforcing the trend toward trade liberalisation
in the region.14 Australia has promoted a multi-lateral
approach to trade liberalisation through the WTO.15
However, in April this year Australia signalled an interest in considering
bilateral trade agreements as part of its trade policy.
2.35 Australia must look to developing better trade
agreements with the countries of South America if business is to be
fully competitive in the region.
Unlike comparable American and European organisations, the Australian
chambers of commerce, put few resources into generating new business.
2.36 Business forums, such as chambers of commerce
and business councils are important in any trade and investment relationship.
However there are factors that work against business forums in Australia
generating new business to the level of overseas counterparts; a lack
of resources, both financial and human, and long term commitment by
SMEs in supporting the work of business forums. The Committee learnt
recently that the Argentina-Australia Chamber of Commerce based in Melbourne
has been wound up. The issue was whether the Chamber had a role in the
face of a lack of progress in exciting the interest of Australian SMEs
in the potentialities of the South American market. This inertia of
Australian business is a difficult one to address and the upshot is
that Australian business misses out on export opportunities.
2.37 Austrade identified 18 characteristics in its
SWOT analysis that are conducive to Australia increasing trade and investment
links with South America. There is little doubt that South America
is dynamic and developing, leading to a multitude of business opportunities.
The Trade Sub-Committee on its visit to eight South American countries
came away with the view that Australian business is really well placed
to move into the market and capture market share. One's perceptions
of South America being a place that would not be attractive to Australian
business is dispelled when the characteristics discussed throughout
the report are read together. They present a powerful reason for the
market to be looked at seriously by Australian exporting firms.
2.38 There may be another element on the horizon
that will make firms take a serious look there is comment by economists
that the Asian recovery may not be a lasting one. Although there has
been positive growth in Asia, the structural problems in the financial
system are still there.
An improving macroeconomic environment.
2.39 In the 1980s and early 1990s the economies of
South America experienced very high inflation. When we examine each
of the eight countries further on in the report it can be seen that
they have moved to address the pressures on their respective economies.
Table 2.1 below provides a snapshot of the movement of the CPI over
the period 1990 to 1998 and should be read in conjunction with the country
chapters for explanation.
Table 2.1 CPI Movements, 1990-1998 (Annual % change)
Source: Australia's Trade with the Americas, 1993-94
& 1998, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Canberra.
South American economies have grown strongly throughout the 1990s.
2.40 The table above reflects the growth in the economies.
Throughout the 1990s there has been an opening up of the economies in
South America with governments making structural changes to improve
economic performance. Table 2.2 below shows the real GDP growth for
the period 1990 to 1998.
Table 2.2 Real GDP Growth, 1990-1998 (Annual % change)
Source: Australia's Trade with the Americas, 1993-94
& 1998, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Canberra.
Latin America's six largest economies are almost as big as the 6
largest economies in emerging Asia.16
2.41 The economies of Chile, Venezuela, Argentina,
Mexico, Brazil and Colombia are nearly as big in size as their top six
emerging Asian counterparts namely, China, South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia,
Thailand and Malaysia. Figure 2.1 below clearly shows the relative size
of the two.
Figure 2.1 Relative Size
of Six Biggest Economies in Latin America and Emerging Asia (PDF Format)
2.42 What is even more interesting is that the combined
economy of the Mercosur partners, Brazil and Argentina, is two-thirds
the size of China, Hong Kong and South Korea combined.
Overall Latin America's 480 million people have an average household
buying power of US$11,000 per annum.
2.43 As Austrade points out in its submission Latin
America has 480 million people with an average household buying power
of US$11,000 per annum. Moreover the middle class has significant buying
power with, for instance, Brazil's middle class having a total purchasing
power of USS$128 billion, see Figure 2.2.
Figure 2.2 Total National
Purchasing Power of the Emerging Middle Class, 1997 (PDF Format)
Risks are perceived to be lower in Latin America than in Asia.
2.44 Austrade in commenting on this opportunity notes
While Asia is still perceived to be two to five years from economic
recovery, there is a greater focus on these markets.17
2.45 However the lower risks in Latin America are
real. For the first time in a decade Latin America, according to the
World Bank, received more FDI18 than did East Asia
South American economic priorities are changing.
2.46 The countries in South America have been restructuring
and progressively integrating into the global marketplace over the last
decade. As the Chairman of ALABC told the inaugural conference of ANCLAS:
The sectors that have been involved in this process cover almost all
areas of business activity, as companies, both local and foreign, have
fought to acquire undervalued assets and market share.20
South America has a favourable foreign investment environment.
2.47 Hand in hand with this restructuring of the
economies has gone the recognition that foreign direct investment is
essential to economic development and integration into the world marketplace.
Investors are now able to acquire controlling stakes in South American
There is more undisclosed potential in economic terms in South America
at present than in any other region in the world.
2.48 Australian executives in South America maintain
this, as do Australia's competitors, evidenced by the level of their
activity in the region. The Trade Sub-Committee had this point reinforced
on numerous occasions during their visit.
Once markets are penetrated Australians find South America a more
conducive business environment than Asia.
2.49 In relation to this opportunity there are three
factors that Austrade says make the business environment in South America
a particularly positive one in comparison to Asia:
- There is a 'western' culture in which it is easy for Australians
to do business;
- English is fairly widely spoken in business in South America, though
less so in Brazil;21 and
- Gaining a foothold in one South American market makes it much easier
to gain access in neighbouring markets.22
The present low value of the Australian dollar is having a positive
2.50 The South American currencies are generally
'tied' to the US dollar. In Argentina the peso and the US dollar are
interchangeable. Ecuador is implementing a system of dollarisation whereby
the local currency, the sucre, is being replaced by the US dollar. The
value of the Australian dollar against the US dollar makes Australian
exports competitively priced.
Major privatisations will give Australian firms major opportunities.
2.51 Austrade anticipates that over the next five
years there will be major opportunities as South American countries
continue to undertake major privatisation programs. Table 2.3 shows
areas of major privatisations.
Table 2.3 Major Privatisations
Source: Austrade, Submission, p. 210.
Total project costs US$22.78 billion
Estimated export potential US$5.58 billion
Total project costs US$3.58 billion
Estimated export potential US$959 million
30+ energy projects
Total project costs US$17.66 billion
Estimated export potential US$6.35 billion
Total project costs US$1.72 billion
Estimated export potential US$618 million
The Cairns Group.
2.52 The Cairns Group of 15 agricultural exporting
countries has provided the forum for coalition building in South America.
Six South American countries are members of the Cairns Group Argentina,
Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Paraguay and Uruguay. The Cairns Group of agricultural
fair traders has been most successful and it was 'largely as a result
of the group's efforts that a framework for reform of trade in agricultural
products was established in the Uruguay Round.'23
South American tariffs and non-tariff barriers against imports have
2.53 Over the last decade, with the move to open
up the economies, there has been a fall in the tariffs and non-tariff
barriers applied against imports.
The regulatory environment is being simplified.
2.54 The rules and regulations for doing business
in the region are increasingly predictable and in some cases Australian
firms are helping governments establish international best practice
with rules and regulations.24
Development of South American economies is generating further demand
2.55 Service exports offer enormous scope for Australian
business. There is increasing demand for services in insurance, education,
IT & T, environmental and water management, urban planning and construction,
wine production services and technology, agribusiness consulting and
services, mining services, tourism, health, hospitality and finance.
Many South American importers want to broaden their sources of supply.
2.56 South American importers have tended to look
north, to the US in particular, as a source of supplies. With the movement
to bilateral trading relationships over the last decade, South America
is looking further afield and sourcing product from the EU and Asia.
South American businesses 'are willing to consider alternative suppliers
where quality requirements are met and a price advantage is offered.'25
There is room in the market for new entrants.
2.57 The issue is how long is the window of opportunity
going to be open. The problem is that Australia has dawdled to date
on opportunities while competitors have been racing. There are still
a number of countries where Australian firms could be early entrants
in the market. Colombia is one such country that the Committee considers
is a greenfield market. When the country solves its internal
security problem there will be very good opportunities for business.
A joint venture in one Mercosur nation gives advantageous access
to other Mercosur markets.
2.58 Mercosur is one of the fastest growing economic
regions in the world. As Nu-Lec Pty Ltd pointed out:
There are absolutely no taxes whatsoever associated with trade in that
zone. So again, for us to set up local manufacturing in Argentina or
Brazil, immediately we are 30 per cent to 40 per cent more competitive
in those other countries.26
2.59 In carrying out it's SWOT analysis Austrade
identified 7 characteristics of the South American market that can constrain
trade and investment for Australian business. These characteristics
focus on the mechanisms that South American countries have formulated
to develop their trade links and the resulting trade competitors for
Australia. Unfortunately Australia has not been part of this process,
focusing on working through a global system, the WTO, to gain to access
to markets rather than engaging countries directly. As a result many
of these preferential arrangements discriminate against Australia. Following
the disastrous WTO meeting in Seattle in November 1999, the Prime Minister
has now indicated a preparedness to shift ground and explore free trade
agreements. This shift in policy approach will work to dissipate a number
of the following threats to Australian trade and investment in South
Regional trade blocks.
2.60 The countries of South America have been active
in establishing a number of regional and preferential trade agreements
amongst themselves over the last ten years with the aim to move towards
more trade liberalisation in the region. These RTAs27
are discussed more fully in Chapter 3. The United States and Canada
have been very aggressive in South America as has the European Union
2.61 Mercosur has pursued the expansion of its preferential
trade ties in recent years with an arrangement with the Andean Community.
The EU and Mercosur are holding discussions on a free trade agreement,
although the issue of the inclusion of agriculture is one that needs
to be worked through.28
2.62 In April 1998 formal negotiations began on the
formation of the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) that would include
all Western Hemisphere countries except Cuba. It is proposed this hemisphere-wide
free trade zone be negotiated by 2005. The establishment of the FTAA
would have serious implications for Australia's trade interests.
Bilateral trade agreements between South America and competitors.
2.63 On the bilateral front, the South American countries,
especially Chile, have in place a range of bilateral free trade agreements
with each other. Furthermore Argentina and Uruguay have bilateral agreements
with Mexico along with Chile, who also a bilateral with Canada. Brazil
has indicated its intention to negotiate an agreement with Mexico. The
exporters of Mexico and Canada enjoy an advantage over competitors like
Australia in the South American market place.
An early resurgence in key Asian markets could result in Australian
business refocussing all their attention on those markets.
2.64 There has been some recent comment that although
Asia has shown signs of recovery after the downturn in 1997, this recovery
may not be long term as there has not necessarily been fundamental structural
readjustment that would address the problems. As the President of the
Korea Exchange Bank is reported, none of the vulnerabilities that brought
about the Asian financial crisis have gone away and there are two legacies
that have been left heavy debt and greater household insecurity.29
Furthermore it has left the region more vulnerable to external shocks.
Mercosur preferential duties.
2.65 Mercosur preferential duties place Australian
exporters at a competitive disadvantage when competing against exporters
from other Mercosur countries. A tiered Common External Tariff (CET)
ranging from zero to 23per cent applies to about 85 per cent of tariff
lines. In November 1997 'Mercosur decided to increase all the Common
External Tariffs by 3 per cent. While this measure ran counter to the
general trend to trade liberalisation in Mercosur, it is supposed to
be a temporary measure that will be phased-out by 2000.'30
Established competitors give higher priority to capturing market
share in South America rather than Asia.
2.66 Austrade makes the point that our competitors
in the US, Canada and Europe go out of their way to ensure that their
companies and agencies are at the cutting edge of winning business in
South America and will provide significant financing to do so.31
2.67 Asian tigers are emerging as significant competitors
in the South American market. They now supply over 19 per cent of South
America's imports while Australia supplies less than half a per cent.
nexus between Asia and Latin America is building. President Estrada,
of the Philippines visited Santiago and Buenos Aires recently. Mahathir
Mohamad has been across to Buenos Aires. Goh Chok Tong of Singapore
was recently in Buenos Aires. There is a lot of presidential or prime
ministerial contact taking place at the present time between Latin America
Austrade's competitors are aggressively strengthening their networks.
2.68 Austrade provided examples, as shown in Table
2.4, where marketing arms of competitors are strengthening their marketing
staff in key markets to optimise market share takings.
Table 2.4 Staffing Levels of Trade Marketing Arms
in South America
Source: Austrade, Submission, p. 214.
| 1 Australian
| 1 Australian
| 1 Australian|
|| 2 Canadian
| 4 Canadian
| 3 Canadian
| 2 Canadian|
|| 5 US
| 4 US
| 2 US
| 1 US|
|| 3 British
| 5 British
| 2 British
| 1 British|
Areas of Opportunity
2.69 There are many Australian companies doing business
successfully in South America. By outlining the opportunities at this
point in the report, the Committee hopes to open the eyes of more Australian
businesses to the possibilities. In terms of the overall opportunities
available in the marketplace Australia is only taking a very small share.
The factors of the traditional north-south links and the aggressive
marketing by competitors such as the US, Canada and the EU, have tended
to provide South American governments and business with a defined focus
on where expertise is available. This of course leaves Australia out
of their field of focus, a situation that was confirmed on numerous
occasions when the Trade Sub-Committee met with government officials
and business leaders in South America.
2.70 Austrade's Americas team, in the publication
Doing Business in Latin America: An Introductory Guide, outlined
business opportunities in sectors that offered the most immediate potential
for Australian suppliers of products and services. The sectors are:
- Oil and gas;
- Information technology and communications;
- Marine industry;
- Services industries and consumer goods;
- Education services;
- Environmental technology and services;
- Infrastructure and transport;
- Urban planning and construction technology;
- Wine production services and technology;
- Processed foods and beverages to supermarkets; and
- Automotive after-market.
2.71 The full details of these sectors can be read
at Appendix E.
1. Speech by Jos Blanco,
Chairman, Australia-Latin America Business Council, at the inaugural
conference of the Australian National Centre for Latin American Studies
(ANCLAS), Australian National University, Canberra, 20 June 2000.
2. TOOS'97, p. 143.
3. TOOS 2000.
4. SWOT Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities
5. Austrade, Submission, p. 201.
6. ibid. see pp. 201-204.
7. ibid. p. 203.
9. ibid. p. 204
10. ibid. p. 205.
11. Nu-Lec Pty Ltd, a wholly owned
Australian company exports to 52 countries and its South American business
is its second strongest market after the UK. Nu-Lec's first contact
with South America was at a conference in Los Angeles and they developed
the relationship from this contact. See Nu-Lec, Transcript, 24 February
2000, p. 520.
12. Banco Santander, Submission,
13. DFAT, Submission, p. 331.
14. ibid. p. 310.
15. WTO World Trade Organisation.
16. China, South Korea, Taiwan, Indonesia,
Thailand and Malaysia. See Austrade, Submission, p. 207. Austrade's
assessment is based on Economist Intelligence Unit estimates for 1998.
17. Austrade, Submission, p. 209.
18. FDI foreign direct investment.
19. The Australian, 'Asian
crisis slows foreign investment to a trickle', 14 July 2000.
20. Speech by Jos Blanco, Chairman,
Australia-Latin America Business Council, at the inaugural conference
of the Australian National Centre for Latin American Studies (ANCLAS),
Australian National University, Canberra, 20 June 2000.
21. Spanish is spoken in South America,
except in Brazil where Portuguese is spoken. The Trade Sub-Committee
found that English is spoken less at the small to medium size enterprise
level and it is therefore important for Australian firms to get a local
partner who has excellent language skills.
22. Austrade, Submission, p. 209.
23. DFAT, Submission, p. 339.
24. DFAT, Transcript, 13 August 1999,
25. Austrade, Submission, p. 211.
26. Nu-Lec, Transcript, 24 February
2000, p. 514.
27. RTA Regional trade agreement.
Mercosur, Latin American Integration Association (ALADI), the Group
of Three and the Andean Community.
28. DFAT, Submission, p. 310.
29. The Australian Financial Review,
'Asia's recovery looking fragile', 19 June 2000.
30. TOOS'99, p. 188.
31. See Austrade, Submission, p.
32. KPMG, Transcript, 17 November
1999, p. 383.
Back to top