SACC End of Year Lunch & Golf – 3 Dec 1pm, Long Reef Golf Club, Sydney

The SACC is organising a lunch followed by afternoon golf at the Long Reef Golf Club on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

We are very excited to be able to invite members and guest to this end of the year in-person event after many months of virtual events in the Zoom world. The lunch and the game of golf offer opportunities to meet members and business contacts of the Chamber in a relaxed but covid controlled setting. The event also enables networking opportunities and for you to promote your company and services.

The Cost per Player incl. Lunch: Members: $95, Non-Members: $125

  • Lunch at the Golf Club, the Pacific room, including a beer/glass of wine
  • Green fee, 9 holes

The Cost for Lunch only: Members: $55, Non-Members: $65

  • Lunch at the Golf Club, the Pacific room, including a beer/glass of wine


1.00 pm – Lunch at the Golf Club, the Pacific room.

2.30 pm – First team tee off.

From 5.00 pm – Post golf drinks at the Golf Club (drinks at bar prices).

All prices are incl. GST.

Book today to reserve your participation, limited spots available.

For more info contact:

This event is sponsored by:

Alfa laval logo                                                       

Purposeful Branding with Lynxeye founders Johan Ekelin & Christian Ihre

We are delighted to have Christian Ihre and Johan Ekelin, founders of Swedish management consultancy Lynxeye, speaking on the SwedCham APAC virtual stage 26 November.

The future is increasingly difficult to predict for business leaders. They have to act and react in a world where business models change and market roles shift at a staggering pace.

Today, 81% of consumers believe that global brands have the power to make the world a better place, and they want companies to play an empathetic and compassionate role in their lives. Furthermore, 72% of consumers expect companies to understand their needs, and if they don’t, they will switch from brand to brand in search of an experience that matches their expectations. These are the challenges and opportunities companies and brands need to adapt to today if they want to be around tomorrow.

During this virtual event, Mr Ekelin and Mr Ihre will share their conviction that the future belongs to companies with a clear purpose. We’ll learn why the winners of tomorrow are those that dare to explore bold ways to make a difference for people and society. We will tap into the wealth of experience of Lynxeye’s founders on how to radically improve business performance by setting a purpose for your organization.

Sweden’s Ambassador to Singapore HE Niclas Kvarnström​ will lead the conversation with Mr Ihre and Mr Ekelin.

Agenda (AEDT):

  • 7:00-7:05pm Welcome remarks by Lisa Ferraton​ General Manager, SwedCham Singapore​
  • 7:05-7:45pm Conversation with Christian Ihre and Johan Ekelin founders of Swedish management consultancy Lynxeye led by Sweden’s Ambassador to Singapore HE Niclas Kvarnström
  • 7:45-8:00pm Open discussion and closing remarks

When: 26 November from 7.00-8.00 pm (AEDT)
Members: $10
Non-Members: $25
Instructions on how to connect to the webinar will be sent out once registered prior to the event.
This webinar is organised by the Swedish Chambers APAC.

Entrepreneurial Inspiration – SACC Virtual Event 12 Nov 6pm AEDT


During the covid-19 pandemic, we have all had to adjust to a new way of working but also maybe even reimagine our own work situation. As a business professional, dreams and ideas about starting something of our own are common but sometimes knowing where to start is the biggest hurdle.

SACC welcomes anyone tempted to have a go at their own venture, to join our Entrepreneurship webinar for inspiration as well as practical advice on how to realise your business dreams.

We will discuss the entrepreneurial journey from concept and start-up to franchise chain and management buyout and we are delighted to present Maria Collyer, Growth Facilitator from the Australian Government’s Business Entrepreneur’s Programme and Libby Helinski, Owner and Founder of Nordic lifestyle business Pappa Sven. The discussion is moderated by Todd Southeren, President Byron Bay Chamber of Commerce, Entrepreneur and digital disruptor.

Presenting the panellists:

Maria Collyer is a multi-awarded food entrepreneur and business expert as the founder of Sweden’s largest juice bar chain, Naked Juicebar. She has experience from many stages of brand building and operational development, with key skills in scalable models to support continuous growth. She also is experienced as a board member in an angel investment group, and as a jury member in pitch competitions both domestically and internationally. Maria Collyer is currently working as a Growth Facilitator for the federal government’s flagship business initiative, The Entrepreneurs Programme. She delivers strategic advisory services to established businesses in Northern NSW and works with most of the region’s well-known brands across food, beverage, fashion and advanced manufacturing. At European Food Service Summit 2011, Maria featured as a guest speaker, sharing line-up with Starbucks’ Howard Schultz. Her own journey has fuelled a passion for business that she is thrilled to share with fellow entrepreneurs.


Libby Helinski first opened her Nordic homewares store, Pappa Sven, in Newcastle in 2014. Libby spent a year living in Skellefteå, in the North of Sweden, and wanted to be able to share her love of the Nordic way of life and create a truly unique retail experience in her hometown. Pappa Sven now consists of a retail store, online store and 2 distinctly Nordic themed Air BnB properties which attracts visitors from all over Australia. Libby graduated from UNSW in 1998 with a degree in Textile Science and her passion for textiles is evident in the business which she has created today. With a strong focus on natural fibres, authentic Scandinavian design and timeless design Libby has loved bringing together her many interests to create the Pappa Sven brand. Libby lives in Newcastle with her husband Matt and 2 teenage daughters Jessica and Lucy.



This webinar is organised by the SACC Brisbane Chapter. It is an interactive webinar with the option for participants to ask live questions during the Q&A session.

When: 12 November from 6.00-7.00 pm (AEDT)
Where: Zoom virtual room
This is a FREE webinar. 


Instructions on how to connect to the webinar will be sent out once registered.

After Work at Kaja Clothing’s New Showroom 5 Nov 2020

Kaja Clothing welcomes SACC/YP members and guests to the opening of their new showroom. Meet the founders and listen to their story, while enjoying a glass of bubbles and viewing the latest collection.

When: 5 November from 6.00-8.00 pm
F27 122-126 Old Pittwater Rd BROOKVALE NSW 2100

Register today, limited spots inline with covid restrictions.

2020 SACC AGM 29 October 6-7 pm AEST

All SACC members are invited to the 2020 SACC AGM 29 October 6.00-7.00pm. We will hold the AGM online only using Microsoft Teams as a platform.

When: Thursday 29 October, AGM meeting 6.00-7.00 pm

Platform: Microsoft Teams

Please note that the online participation link will be distributed to registered members prior to the meeting.

Women in Tech webinar 14 October – Summary

On 14 October the Melbourne Chapter of the SACC hosted a ‘Women in Tech’ webinar, which addressed the topic of gender equality within the technology industry. More than 80 participants were treated to a very engaging webinar that covered a lot of terrain on the topic, revealing a lot of practical advice for aspiring ‘Women in Tech’ and the companies that employ them. The moderator for the webinar was Joanne Woo, Head of Marketing & Communications at ABB Australia and Curator & Speaker Coach for TEDx Australia. Joanne was joined by three senior leaders from the technology industry who openly shared their career experiences as ‘Women in Tech’:  

  •           Brith Isaksson, Global Head of Food and Beverage, ABB Motion, Sweden
  •           Anna Nordell-Westling, CMO & Co-Founder Sana Labs, Sweden
  •           Rajina Sujanthan, IoT Program Director, Ericsson, Australia


Joanne Woo opened the webinar with several poll questions, including a question directed to females already working within the technology industry: “What is your biggest challenge as a woman in tech?” In response, it was unanimous that a lack of female role models, particularly at senior levels within the industry was viewed as a major challenge. Other challenges identified as barriers to diversity, included females not being taken seriously by their male counterparts, the gender pay gap, the ‘glass ceiling’ and lack of diversity within their company. A small number of women cited that they saw no challenges.

Throughout the webinar, the panellists offered advice for women who are building their careers within the technology industry:


  1. Find out what you are passionate about.

All three of the panellists encouraged aspiring ‘Women in Tech’ to pursue career paths that they are passionate about. Both Brith Isaksson and Rajina Sujanthan initially studied degrees in chemistry and engineering respectively, prior to commencing their careers in technical roles. Brith Isaksson initially worked in research and development at ABB in Vasteras and Regina Sujanthan worked in project management for Ericsson in Melbourne. Both would later ascend to global management roles within their companies.

Brith Isaksson recalled with great fondness that as a child when playing with Barbie dolls she could never have envisaged that many years later she would travel half-way across the world as an engineer for ABB to visit a Barbie factory in Indonesia. It became evident that the reference to Barbie was also a great analogy for the need for the technology industry to also keep up with the changing times and move towards increased diversity. “I think the evolution of the (Barbie) brand has shown an evolution of society in terms of that there is no stereotype and that the world is made up of diverse people,” said Joanne Woo.

Unlike the other panellists, Anna Nordell-Westling’s career journey started outside of the technology industry, working for leading advertising agencies such as Saatchi and Saatchi and King, before starting her own advertising firm servicing clients all over the world. A chance meeting and some encouragement from a mentor would later see her co-found Sana Labs, an artificial intelligence (AI) start-up in Stockholm. Four years later, the firm employs 30 people from all over the world who are passionate about leveraging AI to enhance workforce learning outcomes.


  1. Be open to taking up career opportunities that present themselves.

All three panellists highlighted that women will sometimes decide to not take up a career opportunity, for fear of not being qualified or experienced enough – a phenomenon referred to as ‘imposter syndrome.’ “Take all of the opportunities (or risks) that come your way,” said Regina Sujanthan. She went on to emphasise that taking on a role that is particularly challenging or a public speaking engagement are all experiences that help to build self-confidence. She recalled working on a particularly challenging project early on in her career at Ericsson, which resulted in great customer reviews, thereby leading to further career development opportunities. These sentiments were also echoed by the other panellists, who emphasized the importance of not limiting oneself. “When the opportunities come, you should take them… I never look back… that’s important …. it’s better to make a decision,” said Brith Isaksson. “It is also important that we don’t limit ourselves, it is us that only limit ourselves. The sky is the limit,” said Anna Nordell-Westling.


  1. If you are offered a career opportunity that you are unable to take up, “pay it forward” to another female.



Whether that be an opportunity to advance your career by getting up on stage to talk about one’s career or company, joining a panel or a board, the panellists highlighted that women will say no to such opportunities more so than men. This can sometimes be due to being too busy or needing to prioritise family commitments. “I always try to recommend another excellent female for a speaking event or board seat… that’s something we can all do on a bigger scale,” said Anna Nordell-Westling.

The panellists also offered some practical advice for companies who are seeking to improve gender equality outcomes.


  1. Send a clear message from the top that diversity is important – in word and in action.


The panellists encouraged the top management of companies within the technology industry to send a clear message down the line that diversity is important. “That gender diversity is a main priority needs to be communicated from the highest level in the company, so it becomes easier for people in the organisation to take that on,” said Anna Nordell-Westling.

Other actions to be considered might be to ensure that male and female candidates are put forward for all open positions. Setting of diversity targets for women in management positions was also viewed as important, as it offers something to aim for.


  1. Develop leadership and mentoring programs for females at all levels of organisations and beyond.


This was viewed by the panellists as a prerequisite to developing role models at all levels of organisations, particularly within the upper management levels where women tend to be scarcer. Regina Sujanthan mentioned that it was the opportunity to participate in various global leadership programs within Ericsson that allowed her to build her self-confidence, which led her to take on greater challenges. “It is important that women in leading positions share, starting programs to grow the first line, second line and third lines of management,” said Brith Isaksson. She went on further to say that such programs allow future female role models need to be identified and developed, which can help to bridge the lack of female talent, particularly at the upper levels within organisations.

Regina Sujanthan also suggested that companies could even go beyond mentoring their female employees, to also look at setting up mentoring programs with female students at universities and other educational institutions.


  1. Senior executives should not just mentor, but also sponsor women more.


The panellists also highlighted the need for senior-level executives to move beyond simply mentoring top female talents, to actively sponsoring them. This includes advocating and speaking up for female executives and actively helping them to gain visibility within the organisation by putting them forward for career development opportunities. “There is a lot of mentoring going on, but there are not a lot of people speaking up for the females… even if it is just a matter of saying that there is this person interested moving into a role,” said Rajina Sujanthan.


In conclusion, the webinar offered a lot of inspiration and food for thought for both aspiring “Women in Tech” and companies alike to work towards achieving greater levels of equality within the workplace. The Melbourne Chapter would like to thank Joanne Woo, Brith Isaksson, Anna Nordell-Westling and Rajina Sujanthan for volunteering their time to participate in the webinar. We would also like to thank ABB and Camilla Jennings, SACC Business and Events Manager, for their support in organising the webinar.

By John Rieusset, SACC Melbourne VIC Chapter


Keep your eyes on the SACC socials Linkedin and Facebook for further updates as announcements are made about future events, and check out the Recent Events and Webinars page on the SACC website for summaries and recordings of our recent presentations. Please contact us for questions and further information:


Listen to the full webinar and the interactive Q&A session here.








The Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce course/workshop in digital marketing will allow you to learn the basic concepts of Digital Marketing and get your company’s digital strategy off the ground. The course will run over 5 weeks starting Wednesday 14 October with a 2-hour evening session, 7.00-9.00 pm, each week. The general format is 1-hour introduction/presentation on the session focus and 1-hour interactive workshop.


  • Learn the key tools and methods for generating profitable insights from customer behaviour data.
  • Learn the “Experimentational mindset” to help fuel your company’s digital growth.
  • Understand the complex and interconnected ecosystem of digital marketing channels.
  • Learn what it truly means to be “customer-centric” in a digital world.
  • Create more profitable customer outcomes from your existing marketing budget.

The Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce course/workshop in digital marketing will allow you to learn the basic concepts of Digital Marketing and get your company’s digital strategy off the ground. The course will run over 5 weeks starting 14 October with a 2-hour session, 7.00-9.00 pm, each week. The session format includes 1-hour introduction/presentation on the session focus and 1-hour interactive workshop.

The five sections include:

Customers won’t always buy when they first meet your brand online. In order to be successful, you need to understand the different steps in the online customer journeys and decision-making processes so that you can tailor your messaging to each step in the journey. Then you can create conversion funnels that match the steps in the customer journey.

2. DIGITAL MARKETING CHANNELS – 21 October 7.00-9.00 pm
Different marketing channels work differently. Some are very good for capturing prospects early in their buyer journey and some are really good for getting the sale when the customers are closer to the point where they make their final decision. They also have different costs and different reach and different impacts.

3. THE DIGITAL MARKETING TECH/TOOL STACK – 28 October 7.00-9.00 pm 
There are several hundred or even thousands of tools out there to help the online digital marketer. We will give an overview of the main categories and examples of tools that you can easily get started with. This will help you develop a good understanding of how your web site and campaigns are performing.

4. DIGITAL MARKETING ANALYTICS – 4 November 7.00-9.00 pm
When customers and prospects go online or visit your website, they will leave a digital footprint of their activities. In order to understand how you best monetize the audiences, you are reaching you need to be proficient in digital marketing analytics. We will give you the basic building blocks.

5. CONVERSION OPTIMIZATION – 11 November 7.00-9.00 pm
The majority of the work in digital marketing is about driving visitors to your website. But once they are there there’s still a lot you can do in order to lead visitors closer to the conversion goal that you are seeking. Softly but firmly, We will learn the basic tactics in the Conversion Optimization process.

The Swedish Australian Chamber of Commerce offers this course/workshop to a discounted cost:
SACC/YP Members: $125 for all 5 sessions and $45 for a single session, incl. GST.
Non-Members: $250 for all 5 sessions and $75 for a single session, incl. GST.

If you would like to register for single sessions please contact us
Deadline for registrations: 8 October 2020.


John Ekman is the Head of Education at New Republique – Australia’s premier Experimentation & Conversion Optimisation Agency. Prior to joining New Republique John founded Conversionista – the Nr 1 Optimisation agency in Scandinavia. John has been in this business for 10 years and is a highly sought after speaker and instructor. He’s been helping brands like IKEA, Spotify, H&M, and Klarna to take their digital business to the next level.


Women in Tech – Webinar 14 Oct at 4-5pm (AEST)

Sweden has long been regarded as an engineering and technology powerhouse on the world stage, with a long history of producing many recognisable brands such as Ericsson, Spotify, Volvo, Tetra Pak, ABB and Electrolux. The country’s forward-thinking culture has extended far beyond technological innovation, to allow it to become a gender equality role model.

The SACC and YP invite you to join this Women in Tech webinar to get inspired and learn how Swedish technology and engineering companies are promoting gender equality in the workplace.

The moderator for this webinar is Joanne Woo, Head of Marketing & Communications at ABB Australia and Curator & Speaker Coach for TEDx Australia and we will hear from topic experts:
  • Brith Isaksson, Global Head of Food and Beverage, ABB Motion, Sweden
  • Anna Nordell Westling, CMO & Co-Founder Sana Labs, Sweden
  • Rajina Sujanthan, IoT Program Director, Ericsson, Australia

Read more about the panellists below.

This webinar is organised in cooperation with ABB and the SACC Melbourne Chapter.
It is an interactive webinar with the option for participants to ask live questions during the session.

When: 14 October from 4.00 – 5.00 pm (AEST)
Where: Zoom virtual room


This is a FREE webinar.

Instructions on how to connect to the webinar will be sent out once registered.


Joanne Woo, Head of Marketing & Communications at ABB Australia and Curator & Speaker Coach for TEDx Australia

From large global conglomerates to fast growing start-ups, Joanne Woo has led diverse communications teams across B2B and B2C to build lasting brands. Joanne is the Head of Marketing and Communications for ABB, where she is responsible for driving its brand and reputation across Australia. Prior to ABB, Joanne was Head of Corporate Affairs at Deliveroo, one of the world’s fastest growing start-ups at the cutting edge of new developments in the global economy and expanding at a record pace. Joanne was formerly the Vice President, Communications, at GE.



Brith Isaksson, Global Head of Food and Beverage, ABB Motion, Sweden

Brith works with business development in the full horizontal value chain of the food and beverage sector, from agriculture to retailers, for ABB Motion. The global coverage includes around 60 countries with local initiatives and local team members. Brith is Swedish by nationality. She has been with ABB for 30 years and has held many local and global management roles including R&D, Service and Sales with focus on automation related solutions such as robotics, process control, instrumentation, motors and drives. Brith is passionate about contributing to increased sustainability.


Anna Nordell Westling, CMO & Co-Founder Sana Labs, Sweden

Anna is the co-founder and CMO of Sana Labs. Sana Labs is the global leader in development and application of AI for learning with their personalized learning platform Sana. Founded in Stockholm, Sweden, Sana Labs partner with Fortune 500 companies to upskill workforces in half the time and make sure that knowledge is remembered three times longer. Anna has successfully built an interdisciplinary team that consists of AI researchers and machine learning engineers with backgrounds ranging from Google AI and Spotify to BCG Gamma and Imperial College. Anna is an entrepreneurial strategic brand builder with 15+ years of experience in developing and implementing marketing strategies. Previous to Sana Labs, Anna headed brand strategy and consumer insight at Saatchi & Saatchi, Acne, and King for almost ten years. She also ran a marketing acceleration agency for five years working with tech startups and growth companies in Stockholm, Berlin, San Fransisco and Kuala Lumpur. Always with one main focus, to accelerate business through traction and growth. Anna has angel invested in tech startups, is active in Stockholm.AI and WAI, is an advisor of the AI Sustainability Center and sits in the steering committee of Nordic.AI. @annabnordell @sanalabs


Rajina Sujanthan, IoT Program Director, Ericsson, Australia

Rajina is an IoT Program Director and part of Ericsson’s global IoT operations program team. Her primary role is to deliver IoT programs within the Asia Pacific Region including introducing new IoT services and tools to ensureoperational readiness. Rajina has worked extensively with Telstra and nbnco to deliver projects that span Ericsson’s product and services portfolio. She started as an engineering graduate at Ericsson and worked in a global role as a Solution Integrator before transitioning into Project Management. Rajina holds a Bachelors in Telecommunication (with Honours) from RMIT and PMP® through the Project Management Institute. IoT = Internet of Things

Business & Investment Trends between Australia & Sweden

On the 29th of September SACC and the Australian Business Council of Sweden joined forces and delivered, for the first time ever, a joint webinar to its members both in Sweden and in Australia.

Special Guests, HE Bernard Philip Australian Ambassador to Sweden and HE Henrik Cederin, Swedish Ambassador to Australia, were joined by Martin Ekberg, Trade & Invest Commissioner and Country Manager to Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands and Jennifer Mackinlay, Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner for UK, Ireland & Nordics, in a discussion about business and investment trends in Australia and Sweden in a post-covid-19 world.

This historic event was opened by the two Chairmen of the Chambers, Jan Gardberg and Warren Campbell, who jointly offered a warm welcome to the audience, listening in from both sides of the world.

Over the past six months, SACC has through a number of webinars, explored the consequences and the impact that covid-19 has had on business and trade and what businesses have learned from this pandemic. These webinars have been including representatives from many different sectors, offering different aspects and what has been clear throughout these discussions is the need for businesses and individuals to adopt and transform and that trust, inclusion and collaboration will be lighthouses to guide the way forward.

In reference to what the outlook is for the trade and investment policy in Australia and Europe, post this pandemic and considering if there is a risk of renewed protectionism, Ambassador Philip acknowledged that there is indeed some risk of renewed protectionism. Whether it manifests as trade tensions between the major powers, US and China, or in some cases, US and the European Union, or as challenges to the multilateral system, these are indeed signs of increased protectionism.

“We have also seen countries looking inwards which in part, is understandable, but it has also led to unfortunate actions like restrictions on the flow of medical supply as we saw early on in the crisis. There is also a challenge for policy makers as they wrestle with important policy matters like digital trade or climate, to navigate the right balance between good regulation and then actions that stray over to protectionism” said Ambassador Philip. “The broader risk in all of this is the possible intersection between protectionism and geopolitical competition, where they can intersect in a destabilising way. So, I think we do have to recognise that it is an environment that we have to work very hard to manage” continued Ambassador Philip. Ambassador Philip highlighted that there still are some bright spots. Australia has a renewed focus on multilateralism, including its engagement with the G20, OECD and WTO, which is more important than ever. One example of Australia’s support of multilateralism is the covax facility that will provide equitable access to the vaccine when it comes.

Australia and the European Union is continuing to make good progress on the Free Trade Agreement negotiations. Ambassador Philip concluded that “The overall picture is one with encouraging signs”. There are some adjustments that are sensible that could point to increased protectionism, in terms of policies, whether it is building better resilience in supply chains or from a national security perspective, giving greater attention to investment screening. However, “Australia’s view, a view I believe also shared by Sweden, is that this has to be done within a construct of support for free trade,” said Ambassador Philip.

Europe seems to have doubled down on its commitment to a Green Deal, while the Australian Government has just released its first Low Emissions Technology Statement. This presents opportunities for business and investment between Australia and Sweden. Ambassador Philip said that this area is “One of the most exciting areas of the relationship between Sweden and Australia, and more generally between Europe and Australia”. There is a strong commitment in Europe for sustainability and emissions reduction as a central part of the post- covid-19 recovery, which was highlighted in its revised 2030 target but also seen through the role that fiscal stimulus can play in delivering emission reduction targets. Ambassador Philip is recognising an exciting trend in the Nordics around decarbonisation and recognises that there is a powerful sense of companies seeing a competitive advantage of being an early mover in this space. “There is a similar movement in Australia where we really are on an accelerated drive for emissions reduction”. In Australia’s recent Low Emissions Technology Statement, there is a focus on five priority technologies and looking across these areas, there are plenty of complementarities between Australia and Europe. On a political level, one group that Australia joined last year, is the Leadership Group on Industry Transition led by Sweden and India, which presents a good platform for change.

From a Swedish perspective, Ambassador Henrik Cederin shared his perspective on the opportunities and focus areas for business and trade post the pandemic. “From a political perspective, the covid-19 crisis which has led to a shift for online meetings which in turn has led to very good interactions [between Australia and Sweden] with a number of meetings taking place even at the very highest level which in turn bodes well for a good corporate involvement,” said Ambassador Cederin. Whilst there has been a slowdown in visitors from Sweden, online exchange has exploded, which is a promising sign of increased cooperation between Sweden and Australia. The Ambassador also referenced the existing strong position of Swedish businesses in Australia with more than 200 companies with an established presence in Australia, employing some 20,000 people. Companies that are often regarded as local companies with local capabilities. Australia stands out as a critical market for Swedish companies, with a growing economy, albeit the hiccup of covid-19, the long-term trajectory is good.

Sustainability is clearly a focus area for Australia, which will bring opportunities for Swedish companies to invest in Australia. Swedish companies are often leaders in adopting sustainability perspectives and could bring valuable technology and knowhow to Australia in this regard. What Swedish companies can offer the Australian market with the new demands in this market place, makes it a good fit. “We will play a role in the green transitioning that will take place in Australia,” said Ambassador Cederin.

In reference to issues that we need to pay particular attention to in a global trade perspective, Ambassador Cederin refers to the shock that we have seen to supply chains and the tendency that we have seen to reassure local supply chains, politically labelled as strategic autonomy. “This portrays a challenge to increased openness. The fear that this crisis has instilled in this market has been seen in many governments around the world. We have to be active in advocacy for open trade” said Ambassador Cederin. Ambassador Cederin continued “We know that in Sweden, we built our strong economy on open trade and our firm belief is that it [open trade] will be helpful for all countries”.

Martin Ekberg said that there are six major shifts that we now see in the Australian business landscape that have been accelerated due to covid-19. Some already ongoing pre-covid-19 but some have increased and they are; the upgrade of Australian defence capabilities, fast-tracking of key infrastructure and the focus to drive local manufacturing competitiveness. More industry agnostic shifts such as the uptake in zero emissions technology, uptake in digitalisation and cyber security but also a growing ambition to diversify Australia’s trade footprint in terms of trade partners, are also recognised shifts. “Covid-19, as well as the trade conflict between the US and China, has exposed Australia’s trade vulnerability,” said Martin Ekberg. Australia’s high dependability on China has hit Australia very hard. Martin Ekberg also referred to the trade restrictions imposed by China on Australian exports and predicted that these may well continue, which will create a lot of economic uncertainty. This emerging situation should mean opportunities for Swedish companies, Australia already is the 4th largest export market for Sweden outside of the European Union.

Another area with growth potential that Martin Ekberg would like to stress, is smart manufacturing. Sweden has a solid track record in smart manufacturing, an area that has been somewhat neglected in Australia (Australia ranks the worst compared to other OECD countries). Manufacturing self-sufficiency is therefore an opportunity for increased bilateral knowledge exchange, which will assist in making Australia a manufacturing hub. Adaptation of new technology which will enable industry 4.0 and also offers an opportunity to build a local supply chain. “This could be the right time to rethink production strategy,” said Martin Ekberg. By way of advice for Swedish businesses looking at investing in the Australian market, Martin Ekberg could conclude a few areas for businesses to look into.

“The transition to a more sustainable Australia offers a lot of opportunities for Swedish companies to pioneer sustainable solutions in Australia.” Martin Ekberg also highlighted that there has been a shift on how we phrase the word ‘domestic’ as it is no longer only referring to having a local presence. Having a domestic operation also entails local investment in r&d, in manufacturing but also looking at export opportunities from Australia to the regional market. Other aspects for businesses to consider is to stay premium as it will always deliver value and to stay close to customers. Another recommendation is to acquire local knowhow, a local knowledge ecosystem of sorts, maybe through acquisitions.

Jennifer Mackinlay commented that despite the overwhelming challenges engendered by Covid-19, the pandemic has triggered a lot of new opportunities including potential opportunities for reinvestment in Australia. Challenges to supply chains have seen a renewed focus on resilience which in turn has underscored the role and acceleration of digital technologies as well as new technologies such as 3D printing. Australia’s renewed focus on manufacturing and digital technology across all sectors is creating opportunities for example in tele-health, telework and online education which is fast tracking the digital economy. “These strategies will help with Australia’s economic recovery but will also underline the compelling business case for investment in Australia,” said Jennifer Mackinlay.

Australia’s Low Emission Technology Statement, is recognised as another opportunity for Swedish businesses. The Australian Government is investing in the next generation of energy technologies that will deliver lower emissions, reduced costs and more jobs. With Sweden considered a global leader in this regard, Swedish businesses will be well placed to leverage this opportunity. One of the prioritised technologies in the Low Emission Technology Statement is clean hydrogen. The National Hydrogen Strategy released in 2019 sets out the initial actions needed to support an emerging domestic industry. The Australian Government’s new $1.9 billion investment package in new energy technologies includes new commitments that will support hydrogen, including $1.6 billion in new funding for ARENA, a $74.5 million Future Fuels package, and a $70.2 million to activate regional hydrogen export hubs. The National Hydrogen Strategy complemented by the Technology Investment Roadmap and Low Emission Technology Statement will enhance Australia’s energy security, will create jobs and build a hydrogen export industry.

Swedish companies offering hydrogen technology looking to invest in Australia should also explore opportunities to get involved in the hydrogen strategy pursuant to which Australia aspires to become a world leading hydrogen producer. Jennifer Mackinlay also mentioned the circular economy as another area where there is scope for Swedish investment in Australia, following Australia’s one billion dollar commitment to the transformation of Australia’s waste and recycling capacity.

  This session was moderated by Teresia Fors, Vice President of SACC.


Listen to the full webinar and the interactive Q&A session here.

The SACC and ABCS will continue this collaboration and aims to bring you another webinar in the near future where we will take a deeper dive into some of the topics raised during this session.

Keep your eyes on the SACC socials Linkedin and Facebook for further updates as announcements are made about future events, and check out the Recent Events and Webinars page on the SACC website for summaries and recordings of our recent presentations. Please contact us for questions and further information:

Renewable, Clean Energy – What Australia can learn from Nordic/Northern European Countries, 30 Sept

Join us together with our Northern European neighbours for an online enlightening and invigorating talk with Andrew Wear.

In the months and years ahead, as we seek to rebuild our economy after COVID-19, Australia can take inspiration from Nordic and Northern European countries – many of which have been achieving outcomes that far surpass ours.

Norway not only has the highest living standards in the world but also extremely low social and economic inequality. It manages to achieve these outcomes by fostering participation in the labour market, investing in education, redistributing income through the tax and welfare system and investing the proceeds of its oil and gas revenue as well as leading in renewable, clean energy. And it’s neighbour, Denmark, has now managed to halve its per capita carbon emission while Iceland, by supporting the involvement of fathers in parenting and by legislating to secure equal pay, has now topped the gender equality rankings for a decade and counting.

Through long-term investment in renewable electricity, energy efficiency and sustainable cities, solutions do exist – we just need to know where to find them. By understanding how other countries around the world – the Nordic and Northern European countries in particular – we are working to crack the big problems which help illuminate the sort of action required to make a difference in Australia. Join Andrew Wear at this exclusive online event, where he will explore and discuss these ideas and more.

Date: Wednesday 30 September

Time: 4.00 – 5.00 pm

This is a free webinar.