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Sharing knowledge with Latin America could generate trade

Science, Innovation and Information Technology Minister Ros Bates.
Science, Innovation and Information Technology Minister Ros Bates. Greg Miller

DRIVING mutually beneficial scientific discoveries and knowledge creation with Latin America to meet challenges in tropical and mining regions could generate more trade and business opportunities, says Queensland's Science Minister

Science, Innovation and Information Technology Minister Ros Bates said Queensland had positioned itself as a world leader in the development and manufacturing of advanced mining equipment, innovative technology and niche services.

But she said, speaking at the annual Latin American Colloquium at the University of Queensland on Wednesday, there were "tremendous opportunities" for Queensland scientists to collaborate with Latin American colleagues on the challenges facing our tropical and mining regions.

Ms Bates said Queensland could then "leverage those connections and networks" through science and innovation across the South Pacific ocean to increase trade, noting two-way merchandise trade with Latin America was valued at $2.448 billion in 2010-11.

"Latin America is a major growth market for Queensland companies with opportunities in mining equipment, technology and services sectors and in supporting infrastructure projects that underpin the expansion of mining across the region as well as the training and education opportunities linked to those," she said.

"For example, Queensland has long experience in Chile's mining equipment and services sector, with about 30 Queensland companies already having representation in the country.

"Brazil is a focus market for Queensland with Trade and Investment Queensland.

"Companies like Brisbane-based Noja Power will soon start manufacturing their electrical circuit products in the Brazilian state of Campinas.

"This is a great example of a dynamic Queensland firm developing exciting technologies and partnering with local Brazilian engineers to enter and successfully grow their business in Latin America."

The colloquium brings together people from private, government and university sectors in a forum to discuss and exchange ideas on building Latin America and Australia relations.

Topics:  business education mining queensland government science trade



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