top of page

日豪通商協定60周年 Melanie Brock's speech on the 60th anniversary of the Australia Japan Commerce Treaty


July 2017

A range of events were held to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Australia Japan Commerce Treaty including a speech by Melanie Brock at the ANZCCJ event. Her speech on the 60th anniversary of when Robert Menzies and his Japanese counterpart Nobusuke Kishi - the grandfather of current leader Shinzo Abe - signed the Japan-Australia commerce agreement follows in Japanese and English.

日豪通商協定60周年を祝うこのディナーで、ご挨拶ができますこと、商工会議所やAndrew Gauci会頭に御礼を申しあげます。















映画制作 - 日本には優れたアイデアがあり、オーストラリアには優れたスタジオがあります。 






そのためにも、新コロンボ計画、 AJBCC/JABCC の次世代プログラムや日豪若手対話が鍵となる取り組みになります。



Thank you to Andrew Gauci and the Australia and New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan for the opportunity to speak at this important celebration dinner marking the 60th anniversary of the Australia Japan Commerce Treaty.

I too would like to pay my respects to our sempai for their efforts. And while I am in no way understating the gratitude I feel to politicians and bureaucrats for creating this treaty, I believe we should also thank Japanese consumers for their role in the development of trade between our two countries. Japanese consumers support of our products and services is why we are here today.

And naturally, we should also highlight the role played by producers, customs brokers, people behind the scenes, SMEs who took the risk to import and put up with all the hiccups… shosha, banks for having invested in trade and business.

While reflecting on history is important. I would prefer to focus on the next stage. I used to be one of the young ones but I am firmly in the ‘oldies’ group now – especially given that I am a grandmother!! And membership of the older group comes with an obligation to set things up for the younger generation. Easier said than done.

Part of me feels the Australia Japan relationship is a little lacklustre.

Part of me feels excited.

Part of me is worried we are not doing enough.

Part of me is troubled that kangaroos and AKB48 are symbols of our two countries.

Part of me is worried we still don’t have dual citizenship status for our Australian-Japanese ‘half’ children. Another part of me wants to do something to ensure we are not resting on our laurels and relying too much on what has happened and not what lies ahead. I hope I can count on you to help me bring about change.

In preparing for tonight, I used social media to request input. What I received was an amazing list of ideas and suggestions from a range of different people. The key themes rely on our building a stronger base for young people. People suggested we move beyond focusing on what we can ship or sell to the other country and that we focus more on joint business development and working together, in Australia and Japan but also in third countries.

For example, in the tourism sector. Perhaps Australia can help Japan develop its tourism strategy using examples of successful tourism policy as Japan moves to shift the flow of tourists from the main cities to regional Japan. Film-making – Japan has great ideas, Australia has great production studios. Japan is due to host major sporting events in the next few years - RWC, Olympics and Paralympics and the Masters Games. Australia has expertise in sports for business. JVs in agriculture, STEM…and the list goes on…

We need to lead by example and give our everything to ensuring we create more opportunities for young people to actually meet and exchange ideas.

To that end, the New Colombo Plan, the AJBCC/JABCC Future Leaders program and the Australia Japan Youth Dialogue are key initiatives. But I hope to do more.

I hope you will all join me in making the next few years of the Australia Japan relationship strong and sexy, robust and challenging, profitable and fun!!


bottom of page