Australia now ASEAN 2019

24 May 2019

Australia now is an initiative of the Australian Government celebrating Australia’s creative excellence, diversity and innovation in a country or region of significance each year.

This year the 10 member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) will host Australia now, building on the deep and longstanding ties between Australia and ASEAN member countries.

The program will celebrate the vitality, diversity and capability of youth and connect future leaders across the region.

The business landscape across Southeast Asia is being transformed by rapidly expanding cities, a growing consumer class, innovation and digital disruption, deepening integration and stronger connectivity – including with Australia. The time is right to engage more deeply and harness opportunities to build relationships for the future.

Australia now 2019 is engaging and connecting youth through a dynamic program featuring film festivals, culinary showcases and youth forums on smart cities,
ASEAN connections and issues of regional significance. The program provides an opportunity to add young voices to the ASEAN-Australia relationship, and promote Australia as a safe and attractive place to study, live, explore and do business.

With flagship youth initiatives including education forums, young leader programs, culinary events and an ASEAN-wide Flickerfest short film competition, Australia now ASEAN 2019 will draw attention to our first-class education opportunities, quality creative industries and premium food export products.

Highlights include the Festival Sinema Australia Indonesia in March, Vietnam’s ‘Taste of Australia’ food experiences throughout May, the QUT start-up delegation to ‘TechSauce Global Summit’ in Thailand in June, and Adam Liaw’s Food Celebration tour.

Diana Chan takes to the streets of Yangon and cooks up a storm

Diana Chan, MasterChef Australia Winner 2017, joined in the Australia now ASEAN spirit for Australia Day in Myanmar.

Diana posing for a photo with a fellow chef.
Diana shared her dumpling making skills with a keen group of 16 young deaf chefs who enjoyed Diana’s enthusiasm and came away with autographs and a mean recipe for Thai chicken dumplings. Credit: Australian Embassy in Myanmar.

Diana took to the culinary stage for the Taste of Australia celebrations in Yangon, cooking up a storm for over 500 local and international guests. Diana delighted those in attendance with mouth-watering dishes created from a mix of local and Australian ingredients, highlighting the diversity and dynamism of Australian cuisine.

The following day Diana held her ‘Cooking with Diana Chan’ class at The Park Royal Yangon. The class featured an array of food demonstrations and community engagement with the Myanmar Deaf Chefs Organisation.

The Park Royal provided the ingredients for the class and expressed interest in the Deaf Chefs Organisation, including as a potential future employer of Deaf Chefs graduates!

Other highlights of Diana’s visit included joining Chargé Jeremy Kruse from the Australian Embassy in Myanmar for a colourful meander through downtown Yangon, sampling delicious local Burmese street food and the rich cultural diversity the city has to offer.

Diana’s infectious zest for cooking served to highlight the valuable contribution that people from many nations bring to Australian life and our economy.

We hope Diana’s visit serves to stimulate demand for our high quality produce and food.



Last Updated: 14 May 2019
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