The Australian Government and a contingent of Australian mining companies have identified over $45 million in future business opportunities throughout Latin America.


Peter Beattie, the Government’s Resources Sector Supplier Envoy, recently travelled with chief executives and senior managers from 11 Australian mining suppliers to Chlie, Colombia and Peru.


"Australian resources sector suppliers will find real opportunities in South America. By doing their homework and using the services of Australian government representatives offshore, in particular in strong growth emerging markets, they can grow their business both in Australia and abroad,” Mr Beattie said.


"Australia enjoys a strong reputation in South America because Australian firms are innovative and we engage constructively in problem solving.”


Federal Minister for Industry and Innovation Greg Combet welcomed the finding, describing South America as a natural fit for Australian interests.


"More than $260 billion of investment in minerals exploration and development has been announced in Chile, Colombia and Peru for the next 5-10 years, this presents real opportunities for innovative and competitive Australian suppliers to expand their customer base internationally," Mr Combet said.


"Australia's reputation as an open and competitive market, and our suppliers' highly skilled and innovative workforce, give us an edge in the global marketplace and in particular strong growth emerging markets."


Australian mining interests will have a further opportunity to explore the Latin American market at the Latin America DownUnder conference to be held in Sydney, 22-23 May.