The Embassy of Australia, located at 1601 Massachusetts Ave NW Washington DC, remains open for business while scaffolding is erected around the building. The scaffolding will remain in place for an indeterminate period.
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Increased Humanitarian Support for Syria and Iraq
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop will announce at the Syria Donors Conference that Australia will provide an additional $25 million for life-saving humanitarian assistance in Syria, Iraq and countries in the region hosting large numbers of refugees. This new funding includes $20 million for partners within Syria, and to partners operating in the region including the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), World Food Programme (WFP) and Australian NGOs. Australia’s assistance will help Syrian refugees and their host communities in the region access vital resources such as food, shelter and protection. The Australian Government will also provide an additional $5 million for Iraq, including $2 million to the United Nations Development Programme to help stabilise areas of the country liberated from Daesh, and the balance to NGO partners. (more)
Trade Minister Robb Signs historic Trans Pacific Trade Pact (TPP) in New Zealand
The historic Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPP) – which will see the elimination of 98 per cent of tariffs among 12 countries – was formally signed today in New Zealand by the Minister for Trade and Investment Andrew Robb. The TPP is the world’s most significant trade and investment agreement finalised in more than two decades with member countries accounting for around 40 per cent of global GDP. Australia’s exports of goods and services to these countries were worth $109 billion last year – a third of Australia’s total exports. In 2014, Australian investment in TPP countries was 45 per cent of all outward investment...Mr Robb said this agreement brings enormous promise across both traditional areas of trade and investment and so-called 21st century areas like e-commerce and increasingly important global value chains.(more)
United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund
Today I announce Australia will provide further funding for life-saving humanitarian assistance to the victims of armed conflict and natural disasters. The Australian Government will contribute $10.7 million to the United Nations Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF) in 2016. The CERF’s rapid response facility ensures funds are immediately available to relief organisations, allowing them to deliver food, drinking water and medical supplies quickly and efficiently. Each year, the CERF provides more than 20 million people with life-saving health treatments, 10 million people with life-sustaining food and 8 million people access to clean water and sanitation. (more)
G'Day USA 2016
Foreign Minister: I am pleased to launch the 2016 G’DAY USA program, the premier public and economic diplomacy program promoting Australia in the United States. The 2016 program showcases Australia as an innovative, high growth and sophisticated economy. The program provides an important platform for bilateral dialogue with the United States and will highlight cooperation in the Asia Pacific, defence industries and water and drought management. One of the key events is the 2016 G’DAY USA Gala in Los Angeles, presented by Qantas on 28 January. It will highlight Australia’s highly talented creative industries across film, entertainment, the arts, music, fashion, food, wine and tourism. (more) G'Day USA Program launch Speech, Qantas hangar, Sydney
Historic climate agreement
The agreement secured in Paris is an historic step in the global response to climate change. Australia worked constructively with other nations to secure an ambitious, effective and enduring outcome, which for the first time requires all countries to take action to reduce global greenhouse gas emissions. The Paris Agreement provides for five yearly reviews of national targets, underpinned by a rules based system that will assess whether countries are meeting their commitments. (more)
Ambassador to the United States of America
Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has announced the appointment of the Hon Joseph Hockey as Australia's next Ambassador to the United States of America. Australia and the United States have deep and mutually beneficial bilateral ties, fostered through 75 years of formal diplomatic relations. Our Alliance with the United States is the bedrock of foreign and defence policy and we are working closely together on shared regional and global security, strategic and economic interests. Mr Hockey is expected to take up his position in early 2016. I thank outgoing Ambassador the Hon Kim Beazley AC for his significant contribution to advancing Australia’s interests in the United States since 2010. (more)
New Smartraveller campaign launched
Australians are being reminded to make their first stop the Smartraveller website before they travel overseas in a revamped national advertising campaign. The new campaign aims to remind Australians to prepare for their upcoming trip and to take responsibility for themselves when travelling overseas. With Australians continuing to travel in ever-increasing numbers, with almost 10 million trips taken in the last financial year, the Smartraveller message continues to be critically important – ‘be informed, be prepared’. While most Australians travel safely, and take appropriate precautions, the number of Australians seeking consular assistance continues to rise. A large number of these cases could have been prevented with the right preparation, planning and taking out comprehensive travel insurance. (more)
If you have the skills, Australia has the lifestyle. If you like the idea of Australia's climate and lifestyle and are looking for a career challenge in a country with lots of opportunities—take the next step and find out more about Australia's skilled working visas. Your journey starts when you submit an expression of interest for a skilled visa through SkillSelect. By using SkillSelect the Australian Government could invite you to lodge a visa application or you could be nominated by an Australian or state and territory government. Find out what you need to do to complete your expression of interest through SkillSelect.