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Australia-Mexico Diplomatic Relations Celebrate 50 Years

2016 marks the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between Australia and Mexico. The modern bilateral relationship can be characterised as a close and dynamic partnership. Both countries work closely together bilaterally, regionally and multilaterally and are closely aligned in their commitment to free trade, as demonstrated by our participation in the Trans-Pacific Partnership. We attach a high priority to a rules-based global order and cooperate in bodies such as G20, APEC and the OECD. People-to-people links are growing strongly, notably in the tourism and education sectors.

Full article: Australia-Mexico Diplomatic Relations Celebrate 50 Years

Julie Bishop

Speech by the Hon Julie Bishop MP, Minister for Foreign Affairs

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop delivered a speech on Australia-Latin America Relations, at the Latin America Down Under Gala Dinner in Sydney on 28 May 2014.

Message from COALAR Chair Chris Gale

I look forward to chairing the 41st COALAR board meeting in Sydney on 29 May.

Together with my fellow board members, we will have the task of considering some 93 grant applications totalling $5.3 million. This will not be easy because of the quantity and high quality of the applications.

During the meeting, the board will discuss developments in the dynamic Latin America region with Australia's Ambassadors and senior officials from Austrade, DFAT and Education.

I am also excited about joining TAFE Directors Australia's Peter Holden on stage at the Latin America Down Under (LADU) mining conference to talk about his organisation's success in partnering the Inter-American Development Bank after receiving a modest COALAR grant in 2013 to deliver seminars on Australia's vocational education and skills training model. IDB partnership has allowed TDA to extend the seminars to a second series.

This will be the second year in a row that we have held the board meeting in the margins of LADU. This reflects the board's desire to work closely with organisations focussed on Latin America.

LADU has been held annually since 2012 in Sydney.


Kelvin Thomson

Speech by the Hon Kelvin Thomson MP, Parliamentary Secretary for Trade

Seminar on the Pacific Alliance, delivered at the Australian National University, 24 June 2013

Chris Gale

Senator Carr appoints Chris Gale as the new Chairman of COALAR

Mr Gale replaces Mr David Luboff who has served as Chairman since July 2010.

Mr Gale has been a member of the Council's Board since August 2012 and will chair the next COALAR Board meeting on 30 May 2013 in Sydney.

Media release: Council on Australia Latin America Relations


Senator Carr launches new COALAR Logo

Senator Carr has announced the new Coalar logo. 

Each colour represents the land mass of the countries of Latin America and Australia based on land mass. The data forms a vibrant and energetic 'C' which is appropriate for Latin America and reminiscent of some traditional Latin American textile designs. 

Coalar thanks the professional team at Australia Unlimited for their work on the development of the logo.

Lowy Report on Brazil

Senator Carr launched the latest report by the Lowy Institute, Great Southern Lands: Building ties between Australia and Brazil. The report was published with support from Coalar.

Senator Carr and authers of the report stood in a line facing the camera

Senator Carr with authors of Great Southern Lands: Building Ties Between Australia and Brazil - Mark Thirlwell, Tim Harcourt and Patrick Carvalho.

Australia Brazil Second Track Dialogue

COALAR is proud to support the inaugural Australia Brazil Second Track Dialogue to be held in São Paulo, Brazil on 21 March. The dialogue is the joint initiative of the Australian Embassy in Brasilia and the University of Melbourne. It is being co-hosted by the University of São Paulo, Latin America's most prestigious university.

Forum for East Asia–Latin America Co-operation logo

FEALAC Cyber Secretariat 2nd Anniversary UCC Contest

The Cyber Secretariat of the Forum for East Asia–Latin America Co-operation is inviting all the residents in the FEALAC member countries, including Australia to the User-Created-Content (UCC) Contest to commemorate the 2nd anniversary of the Cyber Secretariat's opening with a view to further deepening mutual understanding and strengthening co-operation between East Asia and Latin America.

The theme for the contest is: 'East Asia that I have experienced' or 'Latin America that I have experienced'. The contest closes on 28 February 2013.

Further information on the 2nd Anniversary UCC Contest and to access the application form

Science Without Borders logo in Portuguese - Ciencia Sem Fronteiras

Australia's participation in Brazil's 'Science Without Borders' scholarship program

Australian universities are offering over 3,000 places to Brazilian students under the Brazilian Government's 'Science Without Borders' program. Under the program, high-performing students with English skills will receive scholarships to live and study in Australia for at least one year. The first group of 400 students have already commenced study, with a second cohort scheduled to begin in the first semester of 2013. The program currently focuses on research in the fields of science and technology.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff initiated 'Science Without Borders' in order to help Brazil's brightest students gain experience at some of the best universities around the world. With over 30 Australian universities from across the country participating in the program, the potential for future research collaboration with Brazil is now greater than ever before.

2013 Australia Latin America Leadership Program

Applications are now open for the 2013 Australia Latin America Leadership Program which will be held in Australia in October 2013. Organisers are looking for mid-career men and women from diverse backgrounds including business, government, non-government organisations, education institutions and trade unions. 48 people, 24 from Australia and 24 from Latin America, will be selected to participate in the 12-day program focusing on "Sustainability in the Context of the Australian-Latin American Business Relationship". Travel, accommodation and meal expenses will be covered.

Coalar is proud to support the 2013 Leadership Program which will develop important people-to-people links between future leaders of Australia and Latin America.

Visit for information in English, Spanish and Portuguese.

Logo of the Australia Latin America Leadership Program

Foreign Minister meets with Board Members

Coalar Board Members, Greg Martin, Chris Gale and Tim McLennan and Australia Latin America Business Council (AlABC) Chair Jose Blanco met with Senator Carr, exchanging views on the dynamic region of Latin America.

Coalar Board Members, Greg Martin, Chris Gale and Tim McLennan and Australia Latin America Business Council (AlABC) Chair Jose Blanco with Senator Carr

Follow and Like COALAR on Facebook

The Council on Australia Latin America Relations has launched its official Facebook page. This will be a great place for people interested in COALAR and Australia-Latin America activities. Please take a look, share news and views, and let us know what you think.

Latin America and the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper

Prime Minister Gillard launched the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper at the Lowy Institute on 28 October. The White Paper cites Latin America as an example of an opportunity to position Australia as part of a network of regional trade agreements. As outlined in the statement by the Minister for Trade and Competitiveness, Dr Emerson, Australia could become a connecting rod between Latin American countries and Asia in pursuit of a free trade area of the Asia-Pacific.

2012 Australia Latin America Business Excellence Awards

COALAR congratulates the recipients of the 2012 Australia-Latin America Business Excellence Awards: Austin Engineering; Griffith University; and Sinclair Knight Merz. The awards are hosted by the Australia Latin America Business Council each year with the support of COALAR. The awards recognise excellence in doing business with Latin America. Judges look at a range of criteria including strategy, growth, innovation and commitment to the region. The awards were presented in Brisbane by the Queensland Treasurer and Minister for Trade, the Hon Tim Nicholls MP.

Charlie Sartain, CEO of Xstrata Copper, was presented with the Outstanding Contribution award for his commitment to the development of Australia's business relationship with Latin America. Mr Sartain was a member of COALAR from 2004 until June 2012.

Details in caption
Mr Tim Nicholls, Queensland Treasurer and Minister for Trade, with the 2012 winners of the Australia Latin America Business Excellence Awards. (Photo: ALABC)
Details in caption
Charlie Sartain, CEO Xstrata Copper, receives the Oustanding Achivement Award from Jose Blanco, Chair ALABC. (Photo: ALABC)

Executive Committee members

Foreign Minister Bob Carr announces the appointments of Mr Christopher Gale and Mr Tim McLennan as members of the Executive Committee of the Council on Australia Latin America Relations (COALAR). Mr Gale is Managing Director of Latin Resources, and Mr McLennan is the CEO of the International Energy Centre.

Last Updated: 20 March 2017