Canberra (Tribune International, Govt Press Release, 4 September 2020): International businesses will be lured to Australia and exceptional talent will be encouraged to call Australia home under a new initiative to support the post-COVID recovery and boost local jobs.

The new, whole-of-government Global Business and Talent Attraction Taskforce will bring together experts from across the Commonwealth, States and Territories as well as the private sector, as part of the Government’s JobMaker plan.

Senior business leader, Peter Verwer AO, has been appointed as the head of the Taskforce and will be known as the Prime Minister’s Special Envoy for Global Business and Talent Attraction.

The Taskforce will operate as a ‘strike team’ to turbo-charge the creation of jobs by boosting our efforts to attract high value global business and exceptional talent.

The initial focus will be on three key sectors: advanced manufacturing, financial services (including FinTech) and health.

Australia is strategically well positioned given its management of the pandemic and our relatively strong economy. We have always been an attractive destination due to our lifestyle, democratic system, clean cities and proximity to Asia. We can use those advantages to bring more global business and talent to our shores and help create more Australian jobs.

Acting Minister for Immigration, Citizenship, Migrant Services and Multicultural Affairs Alan Tudge said the global

context had significantly changed and many talented people and businesses will now be looking to places like Australia.

“Australia has always been an attractive destination for talent and investment, but given our relative success economically, from a health perspective, and socially, we will be even more attractive.

“We want to capitalise on this and be very focussed on attracting key businesses and global super talent to Australia.  This will aid our recovery and boost jobs for Australians.”

“The Taskforce will take a whole-of-government approach, including coordinating closely with State Government initiatives.  We will be leveraging our networks abroad, including the Australian diaspora, to help identify opportunities.”

Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham said luring more investment from global businesses in emerging industries would be a critical part of Australia’s overall economic recovery from COVID-19.

“Through this taskforce and the ongoing work of Austrade we will highlight to global businesses that our overall economic management and handling of the COVID-19 pandemic strengthens our reputation as a stable and attractive investment destination,” Minister Birmingham said.

“As our economy continues to transform, attracting talent and investment will be critical to bringing additional business nous and new technologies to help drive growth in the development of high-value goods and services in emerging industries.

“With one in 10 jobs already supported by foreign direct investment, boosting investment and getting more global businesses to set up shop here will help drive more jobs and opportunities for Australians.”

On 9 July, the Prime Minister announced that Australia would develop incentives to attract export orientated Hong Kong based businesses to relocate to Australia.

This initiative builds on this idea, and the Global Talent and Business Innovation and Investment programs, to attract high value businesses and exceptionally talented individuals to Australia to create jobs for Australians.

The Taskforce will join up the Department of Home Affairs with the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade), and draw on expertise from the Treasury, the Departments of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Industry, Science, Energy and Resources, Defence, and the Department of Education, Skills and Employment.

They will work closely with the States and Territories, industry leaders and specialists in identifying and executing opportunities.

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