Australia and Europe in Conversation

Australia and Europe in Conversation – number 2

50 years of EU-Australia relations

Wednesday 28 March 2012 5.00 – 6.30pm

50 years

50 years ago, in March 1962, Sir Edwin McCarthy took up his position as the first Australian Ambassador to the EU. Since then EU-Australia relations have had their ups and downs but today the relationship is broader, deeper and stronger than ever - but many challenges lie ahead.

Every month this year, two or three Ambassadors and/or High Commissioners from EU Member States, together with Australian Ambassadors to Europe and other experts, will gather at the ANUCES to talk about their country and why it joined the EU, their current position and how their country interacts with Australia. The events will be recorded and broadcast by Radio National’s “Big Ideas” program.

This month we are fortunate to be joined by H.E. Dr Christoph Mueller, Ambassador for Germany to Australia and Papua New Guinea, H.E. Mr Stéphane Romatet, Ambassador for France to Australia, and Dr Ben Wellings from the ANU, who will together discuss the fifty years of relations between Australia and the EU. Joining them will be Mr Paul Barclay from ABC’s Radio National, who will moderate the discussion.

Venue: ANU Centre for European Studies, 1 Liversidge Street (Bldg 67C), Canberra

Parking: please see the Visitor Parking Map

RSVP: by Monday 26 March 2012

ANUCES is an initiative involving four ANU Colleges (Arts and Social Sciences, Law, Business and Economics, and Asia and the Pacific) co-funded by the ANU and the European Union.

Planned events are as follows:


  • 28 March 2012, with the Ambassadors of Germany and France;
  • 18 April 2012, with the Ambassadors of Czech Republic, Romania and Slovenia;
  • 30 May 2012, with the Ambassadors of Belgium and Sweden (in Melbourne);
  • 27 June 2012, with the Ambassadors of Greece and The Netherlands (in Melbourne)

Venue: March and April: ANU Centre for European Studies, 1 Liversidge Street (Bldg 67C), Canberra

Venue for May and June (Melbourne) to be finalised

The first event was held on Wednesday 29 February 2012 11.45am – 1.30pm - listen to the broadcast


Quotes from "Conversations" no 1 - 29 February 2012

Andrzej Jaroszynski: The people of Poland didn't want membership of the Soviet club, but they aspired to membership of the European Union.

Susanne Shine:  Most Europeans would identify themselves through their national identity, but there is a tendency especially among the younger generation also to identify themselves as Europeans.

David DalyCrises have always brought the EU forward, as the solution is "more Europe" – for example the enlargement to 27 member states.

Don Kenyon:  Although driven by economics, the EU is motivated by politics.

The launch of these events by Mr Gerhard Sabathil, Director for the North East Asia and the Pacific in the EU’s External Action Service took place at the Australian National University's Centre for European Studies on 29 February.

H.E. Mrs Susanne Wagner Hoffman Shine, Ambassador of Denmark, H.E. Mr. Andrzej Jaroszynski, Ambassador of Poland, and H.E. Mr. David Daly, Ambassador of the EU, together with Professor Don Kenyon AM, Australia’s Ambassador to the EU from 1997-2000, were the first to share their thoughts with us while Mr Paul Barclay from Radio National acted as moderator and kept the discussion flowing.

download flyer pdf - 174 KB [174 KB] and media release

ABC Radio National