Parliamentarians from the federal parliaments of Chile, Mexico, Uruguay and Ecuador visited Brisbane and Canberra from 3-9 September 2015 as guests of the Parliament of Australia in order to discuss policy priorities.
Education was a core focus of the visit. The delegation commenced its visit in Brisbane and was welcomed to the University of Queensland, where delegates met with senior academics in the areas of global engagement, geography and environmental management. Members of the delegation then had the opportunity to meet with current PhD students from various Latin American countries studying at the university.
Delegates identified academic exchange as a mutually beneficial program to both Australia and Latin America countries during discussions with the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade, chaired by the Hon Teresa Gambaro MP. Delegates shared their perspectives on how Latin American countries and Australia can continue to cultivate relationships for the future.
Whilst in Brisbane delegates also met with the Governor of Queensland, Hon Paul de Jersey AC. Deputy Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, Ms Grace Grace, hosted the delegates at Queensland Parliament House.
In Canberra, the delegation met with federal parliamentarians, including President of the Senate Stephen Parry, Speaker of the House of Representatives Hon Tony Smith MP, Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade Hon Julie Bishop MP, Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Foreign Affairs and Immigration Hon Matt Thistlethwaite MP, Shadow Minister for Immigration and Border Protection Hon Richard Marles MP and Shadow Minister for Women Senator Claire Moore.
The visit concluded with further round table discussions with senior executives at the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade as well as a luncheon, hosted by the Chair of the Australia-Americas Parliamentary Network Dan Tehan MP.
Members of the delegation with federal parliamentarians