Melbourne, February 9: The Multicultural Business Ministerial Council was today appointed by Andrews Government for better support to people from non-English speaking backgrounds, in their small business ventures.

The Council’s role will be to actively promote Victoria as a culturally diverse business centre, provide a forum for strategic business networking and support Victoria’s trade agenda in emerging markets.

With more than half a million small businesses in Victoria, the Council will provide an essential link to government to ensure multicultural business communities are heard.

The Chair of the Council Ms Rohini Kappadath is Director of Cross-Border Business at Pitcher Partners and winner of the 2015 Telstra Business Women’s Award.

Ms Kappadath has over 25 years experience working with businesses in Australia, South-East Asia, China, Japan, New Zealand and North America.

Rohini Kapadath

The Council is appointed for a two-year term and will meet quarterly and as required. Other Council members include Ms Cynthia Balogh – National Program Manager, Women in Global Business; Ms Elleni Bereded-Samuel – Diversity Capability Manager, Australian Unity; Ms Fotini Kypraios – Senior Associate, Meerkin & Apel Lawyers; Ms Marion Lau – Director, Management Consultant & Technology Services; Mr Mike Zafiropoulos – Board Chair, Channel 31; Mr Faddy Zouky – Executive Director, Zouki Group and 7 others.

Introducing the Council members, Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade Philip Dalidakis said that “This council will be an important voice to the many thousands of business owners and operators from non-English speaking backgrounds across Victoria.”

“Victoria is the most culturally diverse city in the country and we need to ensure that all businesses have the support they need to grow, which will provide better prosperity and more job opportunities for local communities.”

The Small Business Ministerial Council was also announced today to support and advise on critical issues concerning Victoria’s 530,000 small businesses.

New council members include Mr David Mann – Director, Mann Promotions Pty Ltd and Mr Suresh Sutrave – Director, Chirag Tooling Pty Ltd amongst others.

Small business sector represents 97.5 per cent of Victoria’s total businesses.

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