Minister for Trade and Tourism, Senator the Honourable Don Farrell and Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo met on May 26, 2023, in Detroit, Michigan, for the second annual ministerial meeting of the Australia-U.S. Strategic Commercial Dialogue (SCD). Both reinforced the value of the Dialogue as a key bilateral mechanism to advance shared geoeconomic and commercial interests across the nexus of economic, foreign, and national security policy.
Australia and the United States are working together to meet the challenges of our time to build a fairer, more durable global economy; support an open, stable, and prosperous Indo-Pacific region; drive the clean energy transition; and build our shared economic security. To this end, the Minister and Secretary committed to building our strategic cooperation in the following areas:
Indo-Pacific Economic Framework for Prosperity (IPEF)
Australia and the United States are committed to delivering strong outcomes on IPEF this year to support an open, connected, prosperous, resilient, and inclusive Indo-Pacific region. The Minister and Secretary welcomed the upcoming May 27 IPEF Ministerial meeting as an opportunity to demonstrate IPEF’s strategic and commercial value, by delivering early practical outcomes that benefit all IPEF partners.
Together with 12 other IPEF partners, Australia and the United States are committed to tackling new and emerging economic challenges, including by strengthening trade connectivity and regional supply chains, unlocking green trade and investment to support the clean energy transition, and enhancing anti-corruption efforts in the region.
Clean Energy Transition
The Minister and Secretary welcomed the May 20 Australia-U.S. Climate, Critical Minerals and Clean Energy Transformation Compact (the Compact) agreed to by Prime Minster Albanese and President Biden, and the elevation of climate and clean energy and a shared energy industrial base as a pillar of the Australia-U.S. Alliance.
The Minister and Secretary recognised the vital investments Australia and the United States have made to support clean energy industries and exchanged views on how to continue to support each country’s respective efforts towards the clean energy transition. This includes opportunities for future collaboration in the development of industrial bases and improved supply chain integration, in recognition of Australia’s investments in new clean energy industry creation and the opportunities for private sector investment arising from implementation of the United States’ Inflation Reduction Act.
Through the Compact, Australia and the United States have established a new Australia-U.S. Taskforce on Critical Minerals to deepen cooperation on critical minerals as a vital input to the clean energy transition. The Minister and Secretary agreed to convene Australian and U.S. companies from across the critical minerals supply chain, including miners, processors, manufacturers, and investors at an event later in 2023 to help accelerate industry development and clean energy transition, as well as to promote investment opportunities arising from implementation of the U.S. Inflation Reduction Act and significant Australian Government investments across the critical minerals and clean energy technology supply chains.
Australia and the United States have reaffirmed their commitment to working with partners and existing regional and multilateral architecture to deliver meaningful climate action and support clean energy transition and supply chain diversification, including for battery, electrolysers, and solar photovoltaic manufacturing in the Indo-Pacific region.
The Minister and Secretary shared their assessments of the rapidly changing geoeconomic environment and exchanged views on economic security measures and building economic resilience. Both agreed to continue to engage closely on approaches to economic security through ongoing officials’ engagement to advance our mutual geoeconomic and security interests, including the establishment of a senior officials’ Strategic Trade Dialogue on dual-use export controls. The Minister and Secretary also agreed to investigate how Australia’s critical minerals supply can support the implementation of the U.S. CHIPS Act and contribute to a resilient global semiconductor supply chain.
The Minister and Secretary shared concerns about the impact of coercive trade and economic measures on workers and businesses, which undermine the rules-based multilateral trading system and prosperity in Australia, the United States, and the Indo-Pacific region. Both committed to continue ongoing work bilaterally and with other partners to counter the coercive use of trade and economic measures against the private sector.
Minister Farrell thanked Secretary Raimondo for hosting the 2023 Strategic Commercial Dialogue and looked forward to convening the third Strategic Commercial Dialogue in Australia in 2024.
Originally posted at https://www.commerce.gov/news/press-releases/2023/05/joint-statement-second-annual-australia-us-strategic-commercial