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Australian Government

Australia and Gulf nations experts join forces for food, water and energy solutions

: Monday, April 14 - 2014 @ 09:23

Aimed at Government officials and researchers in the Gulf the Australian based Council of Arab Australian Relations (CAAR) will conduct two Food, Water and Energy Nexus Policy Forums – one in Abu Dhabi on 14 April and another in Riyadh on 16 April – to explore the interconnection or ‘nexus’ between food, water and energy security issues.

These invitation-only forums are coordinated by The Australian Trade Commission (Austrade) in partnership with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and will take place at Etihad Towers, Abu Dhabi for UAE participants and at the International Energy Forum, Riyadh for KSA participants.

The Forums have been organised to coincide with the Australian Trade Commission’s Australia Unlimited MENA 2014 event, being held across the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Oman 13th to 17th April 2014.

“Food, water and energy security are growing concerns to nations in their own right but what is less clearly understood is the direct relationship – or nexus – between these three issues,” said Talal Yassine, CAAR Chairman. “Each directly affects the other in away that we have not clearly understood before and Australia has undertaken a lot of recent research to close this knowledge gap,” he added. “Through these expert led forums we hope to explore and discuss the intricate and complex connections of the nexus and look for shared experiences and the potential for future collaboration,” he concluded.

Australia has a number of similar environmental and physical attributes with the Gulf nations – including extreme climate impacting on food production, rapid urban expansion demands on water sources and the increasing needs for, and cost of, energy across both. With strong capabilities in managing scarce water resources and producing innovative food production solutions in stressed environments Australia’s water and agricultural sector expertise is in high demand internationally.

Pablo Kang, Australian Ambassador to the UAE, said, “Australia already enjoys strong ties in our bilateral trade and investment with the region. This food, water, energy nexus however has the potential to profoundly affect our economies and societies. We believe these forums provide an important opportunity to create a deeper engagement with the region by enabling our experts the opportunity to dialogue with Gulf nations experts.”

A strong panel of experts from Australia and the Middle East will share experiences and discuss Australian capabilities.

Speakers include:
-Dr. Alex Wonhas, Executive Director Energy & Resources at CSIRO
-Professor Abid Khan, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Vice President (Global Engagement) Monash University
-Professor Richard Harper, Chair of Sustainable Water Management, Murdoch University
-Richard Price, CEO Australian Export Grains Innovation Centre (AEGIC)
-Mark Pascoe, CEO International Water Centre
-Professor Archie Johnston, Dean of Engineering and Information Technology, University of Sydney

For further information please contact:
Beth McIntyre | Marianna Wisden
TOH Public Relations
Tel: +97143828900

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Monday, April 14- 2014 @ 9:23 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.

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