The German members of the Australia-Germany Advisory Group gathered on Wednesday (9 June) for a meeting chaired by Minister of State Böhmer in preparation for the forthcoming first session of the Australia-Germany Advisory Group.
The members of the Advisory Group have been working since April on recommendations in the fields of education, science and research, and migration and integration, with a view to strengthening German-Australian relations. Other issues under examination include business, trade and energy, art and culture, as well as the security architecture in the Asia-Pacific region.
The Australian Ambassador David J. Ritchie hosted the meeting in Berlin between Volkmar Klein (Member of the German Bundestag and Chairman of the Parliamentary Friendship Group for Relations with Australia), Prof. Volker Perthes (Stifung Wissenschaft und Politik – German Institute for International and Security Affairs), Prof. Anja Schwarz (University of Potsdam) and Caroline King (SAP).
Migration and integration belong together
Minister of State Böhmer, erstwhile Federal Government Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration, underscored the great importance she attached to the field of migration and integration:
We must always think about migration and integration in conjunction with each other. Both issues affect our future and will have a decisive impact on social cohesion and on the competitiveness of our countries in a globalised world. I am certain there are still things we can learn from Australia.
The first working session of the Australia-Germany Advisory Group will take place in the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin on 10 July. A last meeting will be held in Australia in October, at which the Group’s report will be finalised. This report will be submitted to the two Governments at the end of the year.