Wednesday, 31 May 2023

South Australia Club - Seoul Chapter

It’s great to be in Seoul on what is my first visit to the Republic of Korea as Governor of South Australia.

I am pleased to have so many partner companies of South Australian exporters in the room tonight, from manufacturing to life sciences, energy and space, who have travelled from many parts of the country.

I extend a warm welcome to members of South Australia’s Wine Ambassadors Club, and a special welcome to the five Australian New Colombo Plan scholars currently here in the ROK.

South Australia highly values its relationship with the Republic of Korea as a trading partner, a source of investment and source of cultural exchange that enriches our community, through tourism, education and other forms of engagement.

I was delighted to visit South Australia’s Sister-Province Chungcheongnam-do, earlier today – a relationship that was formally established nearly 25 years ago.

This evening it is my great pleasure that we are further strengthening the South Australia – South Korea relationship through the official launch of the Seoul Chapter of the South Australia Club.

In March 2019, the South Australian Government established a regional trade and investment office in Tokyo, charged with overseeing South Australia’s engagement with Japan and South Korea.

Soon after, the Tokyo and Seoul Chapter – a joint Chapter – of the South Australia Club was established, with inaugural Club Chapter Administrator, Ms Sally Townsend, South Australia’s Regional Director for Japan and South Korea, appointed to lead this endeavour.

While the past few years have been a challenging time to organise club engagements, due to the pandemic, I am very pleased to have the opportunity to formally launch the Seoul Chapter this evening.

As South Australians or people who have a special relationship with South Australia, you are all influential business leaders excelling in your chosen fields of endeavour.

Your expertise, business acumen and connections can help maintain the Club’s reputation as a world-class resource for South Australian businesses.

And we are fortunate to have you help us grow the worldwide network of more than 250 ambassadors through your support of the opening of the Seoul chapter.

Let me give you a short update on South Australia’s strengths and capabilities.

South Australia is a hi-tech hub and was recently announced as the location for the development and production of mRNA vaccines for Australia.

Global pharmaceutical giant, BioCina, will use South Australia’s world-leading precision medicine manufacturing technology to produce mRNA vaccines at population volumes.

South Australia’s Lot Fourteen innovation precinct has attracted some of the world’s biggest and brightest across hi-tech, defence, space and creative industries.

Bringing together research, education, industry and government, Lot Fourteen is an integral part of South Australia’s innovation ecosystem.

Our state is a world leader in clean energy, which has been, and continues to be, an important growth area for South Australia and our international partners.

Presently, more than 70 per cent of South Australia’s electricity requirements are met by renewable energy.

Our goal is to reach 100 per cent renewable energy generation by 2030, and 500 per cent by 2050. 

It is South Australia’s ambition to become a global leader in hydrogen energy generation and supply. 

Food, beverage and wine produced in South Australia remains an export strength for our state and attracts visitors from all over the world.

The ongoing demand for premium products that are cleanly, safely and sustainably produced will continue to see significant opportunities for South Australia’s food, beverage and wine businesses in the year ahead.

For this reason I am very pleased by the progress of the South Australian Wine Ambassadors Club, launched last year to support our state’s wine exporters with the assistance of patrons James Halliday and Tony Love.

In just eight months, five chapters of the Wine Ambassador Club have been launched, including Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand.

Our ambassadors from 27 wine importer groups have already helped 14 new wine brands to market, providing an all-important foot in the door for businesses to enter new, exciting markets.

South Australia recently hosted 11 Wine Ambassadors from Hong Kong, Singapore and New Zealand.

During the 4-day familiarisation event, the ambassadors visited some of South Australia's renowned wine regions, including Adelaide Hills, McLaren Vale and Barossa.

It was the first event of its type for the club, and was a wonderful opportunity to showcase what South Australia has to offer.

We are looking forward to hosting a second group of ambassadors in June, and we are delighted this group will include wine ambassadors from South Korea, as well as from Japan.


South Australia is open, ready and keen to do business.

We are committed to innovation, entrepreneurship, and building fruitful partnerships for the long-term.

Tonight, I invite you to join us, and be part of a vibrant and prosperous network of mutual benefit to South Australia and Korea.

Ms Sally Townsend will be delighted to continue tonight’s engagement with you as South Australia’s Regional Director, most ably assisted by Ms Myungjin Kim, South Australia’s representative in Seoul.

Thank you all for your support and I look forward to meeting with you again, hopefully as newly minted members of this valued club.

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