People Watch: November – December 2011

There have been a number of high profile movements in the Australia-China business community in recent months, including the appointment of Alice Cawte to replace Tom O’Connor as the new Australian Consul-General in Shanghai.


Kirsty Boazman has been appointed the new chief executive for the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Hong Kong and Macau. For the past 3.5 years, Kirsty has been the head of marketing and product with the National Australia Bank in their Asian headquarters in Hong Kong. Prior to that, Kirsty was the Director of Public Affairs for the Australian Consulate-General, where she was responsible for promoting Australian interests and views in Hong Kong and Macau. In Australia, Kirsty had a career as a television news journalist and a Senior Media and Political Adviser to the Australian Government Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources.

Ms Alice Cawte is the new Australian Consul-General in Shanghai. Ms Cawte replaces Mr Tom Connor who has been Consul-General since July 2008. Ms Cawte is a senior career officer in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade and has previously served overseas in Beijing and in Noumea and as Representative of the Australian Commerce and Industry Office in Taipei. Ms Cawte holds a Bachelor of Arts with Honours from Sydney University and speaks Mandarin.

Australia China Business Council, Victorian branch director, Jason Chang has recently retired from the KPMG partnership to take up the role as Managing Director and CEO of EMR Capital, a resources private equity investment manager with a strong focus on China and emerging markets. EMR Capital is headquartered in Melbourne but has a global presence through its team and networks. EMR recently signed a strategic MOU with ICBC to collaborate in advising, and managing, Chinese investments in global resources.

christopher_wright_2010_thumbChristopher Wright has taken up the position as Region President of Swedish-listed FT Global 500 industrial engineering firm, Sandvik Mining and Construction (China, Japan, Korea) and will remain based in Shanghai. For the past 3.5 years, Christopher has been the Australian Trade Commission’s Senior Trade Commissioner and China Country Manager. 
During his time with Austrade, Christopher oversaw Austrade’s involvement in the Beijing Olympics Business Club Australia (2008), the Shanghai World Expo 20101 (Austrade staged over 30 events), the China International Small and Medium Enterprise Fair 2010 (over 250 Australian companies participated) and most recently the Australia-China 2.0 Trade Mission (2011).

Christopher has been replaced at Austrade by Michael Clifton. Mr Clifton was formerly chief of staff to Australian Trade Minister Simon Crean, and Senior Trade Commissioner in both Osaka and Hong Kong.

The Australian community in China has farewelled Qantas China General Manager, Steve Farquer who is relocating with the company to Hobart, where he will take up the position of Qantas Manager, Tasmania.
Steve returns to Australia with his wife Kathryn and daughters Emily and Olivia having lived overseas for the past 11 years.

Andrew Hogg, former Regional General Manager Queensland, will be relocating to Shanghai as Qantas Manager, People’s Republic of China, based in Shanghai and will report to Freddy Li, Qantas Regional General Manager North Asia.

Cindy Gottinger has recently returned to Beijing to join the brand management and strategy team at Volkswagen Group China. She will be responsible for developing the Skoda brand and strategy in a highly competitive and growing Chinese automotive market.  Before moving to Beijing, Cindy held the position of International Business Development manager at AIMG media holdings and prior to that, for Goldman Sachs JB Were in Melbourne. Cindy is currently the co-director of Australia China Young Professional Initiative (ACYPI) in Beijing. Cindy speaks fluent Mandarin, Cantonese, German and conversational Vietnamese.

Summer Yan is the new Brand Manager of Australian and New Zealand wines for TORRES CHINA. Summer Yan has been the China Market Development Officer at Wine Australia, and will be in charge of managing and increasing the network of TORRES CHINA’S Australian and New Zealand wines. TORRES CHINA currently represents 15 Australian and New Zealand family-owned wineries. Prior to Wine Australia, Summer worked for Austrade as Business Development Manager for wine.

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