Victoria’s capabilities in digital technology, cyber security and defence will be showcased in the UK and France this week as the Andrews Labor Government encourages more foreign companies to invest in Victoria.

Minister for Trade and Investment Philip Dalidakis will meet with representatives from Europe’s defence, tech and infrastructure sectors to explore trade and investment opportunities.

“By connecting Victoria’s industries with leading innovators in Europe, we’re helping boost exports, strengthen the local economy and create jobs. Victoria offers foreign companies a gateway into Asia and more and more international companies are developing a presence in our great state.”

Minister for Trade and Investment Philip Dalidakis

Minister Dalidakis will engage with key stakeholders, decision makers and government representatives in the UK before travelling to the heart of the French defence industry – the Centre-Loire Valley – to discuss R&D activities and opportunities for collaboration with Victoria. This opportunity will be used to encourage the UK Government to choose the Bushmaster, a military vehicle manufactured by Thales in Bendigo, as the next addition to its defence force.

The Victorian Government is hoping to lure some of the world’s most innovative defence companies to Fishermans Bend – the 32-hectare site five kilometres outside of Melbourne’s CBD will eventually support thousands of jobs. Fishermans Bend is the centrepiece of Victoria’s joint bid with BAE Systems to manufacture the next generation of the Australian Defence Force’s Combat Reconnaissance Vehicles. If successful in the bid, BAE Systems will develop a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility at the ex-General Motors Holden site.

As part of the trade mission to the United Kingdom Minister Dalidakis will also meet with Octopus Investments and congratulate the company on its investment in Melbourne. Octopus Investments is a venture capital and private equity firm specialising in early-stage growth and buyouts in the renewable energy sector and recently opened an office in Melbourne.

The Labor Government is increasing trade between Victoria and the rest of the world and recently released Globally Connected: Victoria’s Trade Statement, a blueprint for the future of trade and investment in Victoria