Kangaroo Stammtisch, Munich, February 2024

Munich members enjoyed an after-work Stammtisch at the Park Café, which adjoins the Old Botanical Gardens, on Tuesday, 27 February 2024. Restarting a pre-pandemic institution, the Kangaroo Tisch, 20 people gathered together to talk about Australia, Germany, and strengthening relations between our countries. One subject of great interest – how do you get dual nationality, given the forthcoming changes in dual nationality laws in Germany. Board member, Rob Harrison, spoke to several about the challenges with the citizenship test and the level of the language test. He’d already got German nationality whilst retaining his Australian passport.

Other topics for discussion included the inevitable – great places for scuba diving in Australia, pros and cons to consider when selecting a city to live, what brought you to Germany (if you were from Australia) or how long did you spend down under (for the Germans). Information on work and residence permits was exchanged, and plans were set in motion for future events.


Innovations for a Secure Future: Transforming Military Strategies, Munich, February 2024


Board Strategy Meeting, Frankfurt, January 2024

Our board met in January to discuss strategies, priorities and plans for 2024. We are committed to action our membership’s feedback to deliver quality events and information on the hot topics of our two nations.

Many thanks to our corporate member Squire Patton Boggs for kindly hosting us!

We look forward to discussing them with our members at the AGM on 25th April.


Christmas Networking Event, Munich, December 2023

On 17 December, the German Australian Business Council hosted a small informal business networking get-together at the Wirtshaus Zum Straubinger. In freezing temperatures we celebrated the festive season over mulled wine and with Eisstockschießen. It was great to have an exclusive group of members and friends in attendance. Despite the low temperature, spirits were certainly high – the Glühwein may have helped! We would like to wish everyone a very merry Christmas.


IBCM / GABC Meeting, Munich, November 2023

IBCM/GABC event 29 November 2023 Guest Speaker Rainer Karcher, Global Head of Sustainability at Allianz Technology

Together with members of the IBCM-affiliated clubs and organised by the American German Business Club Munich, Rainer Karcher led an enlivened, highly informative, and thought-provoking discussion. He addressed:  “Sustainable IT – Addressing the Impact the Exponential Rise of Digitization is Having on our Planet,” outlining how sustainability is embedded not only in company IT services and products but also in so many facets of our daily business and personal lives.   In his words, Rainer was the mosquito in the room that hit us all and left us thinking about what we need to do for sustainability in our daily lives. For those of you who were able to join us, thanks for attending and making this such a memorable meeting.


Vulcan Energy Resources LEOP Opening, Landau, November 2023

The German Australian Business Council congratulates our new corporate member Vulcan Energy Resources on the opening of their Zero Carbon Lithium Optimisation Plant in Landau. The official opening on 23 November had representation from key Australian shareholders, strategic investors from the German automotive industry and more broadly Europe, German and European politicians, analysts, and local to international media.

The start of operations at this plant signifies the beginning of the world’s first production of net zero carbon lithium chemicals, and the first lithium produced in Europe with a fully locally sourced value chain – a fantatstic example of German-Australian business relations!

We certainly wish Vulcan great success with the plant.



Breakfast Briefing with the Australian Embassy, Frankfurt, November 2023

On 24th November Kate Luxford, Chargé d’Affaire a.I. of the Australian Embassy, held a breakfast briefing in Frankfurt with 17 members and friends of the German Australian Business Council. Kate gave an brief update of the events and relevant issues since the departure of Ambassador Philip Green in July.

Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Minister for Resources Madeline King have visited Germany and held talks with their counterparts. Australia is still open to concluding a Free Trade Agreement with the EU in the future, finding a solution to the open issue of agricultural market access. Germany has generally been supportive of free trade, for which Australia is grateful.

Critical mineral and hydrogen remain important topics in trade. Prior to the breakfast briefing, Kate had attended the opening of Vulcan Energy’s Lithium Extraction and Optimisation Plant in Landau.

The briefing concluded with rounds of discussion and networking.


New Zealand Ambassador’s Reception, Munich, November 2023

The German Australian Business Council and AHK New Zealand welcomed H.E. Craig Hawke, New Zealand Ambassador to Germany, on 8 November 2023 at the Adina Apartment Hotel Munich.

H.E. Craig Hawke addressed “optimism” as a key stone of NZ’s way of life and touched on a number of topics including NZ’s diversified culture and attractiveness to students. He discussed the genuine partnership between Germany and NZ to be flourishing, partly due to the repatriations of Mauri historical remains from Germany which has been welcomed and much appreciated by NZ’s society. H.E. Hawke spoke of a key objective between both countries as having contemporary political relations, for example, science co-operations in the fields of hydrogen and space, collaborations between German and NZ universities and partnerships between the agriculture ministries. Germany is considered one of the most important trading partners for NZ and is proud that the Free Trade Agreement between NZ and the EU is the greenest FTA.

Monique Surges, CEO at AHK New Zealand and Supervisory Board of BayWa AG, thanked the Business Council for the event: Getting New Zealanders together. She spoke of BayWa being a great example of acquiring a NZ based company that successfully provided global market expansion. 

We were fortunate to have Clemens Baumgärtner, City of Munich join the evening and have Education NZ alumni attend.

Special thanks to our sponsor BayWa Global Produce and appreciate our supporters the City of Munich (Referat für Arbeit und Wirtschaft der Landeshauptsatdt München), AHK NZ and the NZ Embassy. Without this support, such successful events are not possible.

We also thank our New Zealand friends attending our first NZ led event and look forward to having more.


Down Under Berlin Film Festival, Berlin, October 2023

Down Under Berlin Film Festival celebrated its 11th edition in October at the iconic Moviemento Kino in Berlin. The festival program comprised of various feature films, shorts films and documentaries from Australia and New Zealand and was supported by the embassies of Australia and New Zealand. Tourism Australia was on board as the festival’s major sponsor for the second time, and silver sponsors included Sonic Healthcare and Education New Zealand. Down Under Berlin has been a supporter of Australian businesses both locally and at home and is open for new sponsorships and partnerships in various capacities. 

The German Australian Business Council was a proud partner of the event, organising a raffle of free tickets to its members.

Check out the some highlights below:

Video highlights are here (credit: NOFOMO.TV):

NZ Opening Night


AU Closing Night



Oktoberfest, Munich, September 2023

On the 24th of September 2023, more than 250 participants from the Munich International Business Groups attended the Oktoberfest Business Networking Event – which included the German Australian Business Council (GABC), American-German Business Club (AGBC), Swiss Australian Chamber of Commerce and the Irish Business Network (IBN). Business Council Members and guests enjoyed a traditional Oktoberfest menu at the Schottenhamel tent, raising glasses and singing along with the Bavarian folk music being performed on the central orchestra stage. There was also an opportunity for networking and discussion in person. Everybody enjoyed the special and joyful atmosphere.