Australia’s new look advisory council – Australia India Council to advance its interests in India has three new faces. Appointing Lisa Singh, former Senator from Tasmania, Ted Baillieu former Premier of Victoria and Matthew Hayden, former Australian Cricketer, the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Hon. Marise Payne said, “I am pleased to announce four appointments to the Board of the Australia-India Council. Mr Ashok Jacob has been reappointed as Chair, and will be joined by three new Board Members: the Hon Lisa Singh, who will serve as Deputy Chair, the Hon Ted Baillieu AO and Mr Matthew Hayden AM.”
The Council plays an important role in advancing Australia’s foreign and economic policy interests with India, including through supporting the implementation of the Comprehensive Strategic Partnership and the India Economic Strategy.
Ashok Jacob has served with distinction as Chair of the Council since 2014, and is the Executive Chairman of Ellerston Capital, with more than 33 years of investment experience, including with India.
He is also a Director of MRF Ltd, one of India’s largest tyre companies based in Chennai. Mr Jacob is a director of Thorney Opportunities Limited. Mr Jacob was the Managing Director of Thorney Holdings, the investment arm of the Pratt Group, from 1991 to 1998, after joining in 1984.
He was previously a member of Australia’s Trade, Tourism and Investment Policy Advisory Council chaired by the then Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment. He was also a former director of Malayala Manorama, one of India’s largest media companies.
Mr Jacob holds an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor of Science from St Joseph’s College, Bangalore, India.
Deputy Chair Lisa Singh represented Tasmania in the Federal Senate from 2010 to 2019. In 2014, the President of India conferred on her the Pravasi Bharatiya Samman award for exceptional and meritorious public service as a person of Indian heritage in fostering friendly relations between India and Australia.
Ms Singh’s career has focused on the promotion and protection of peace and human rights, foreign affairs and trade policy, international development, the environment, governance and access to justice. She has published widely and speaks regularly on these issues.
Ted Baillieu was Premier of Victoria from 2010 to 2013 and a member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly from 1999 to 2014. Mr Baillieu is the recipient of the 2013 Ashoka Medal from the Australia India Business Council Victoria in recognition of his contribution to Australia-India relations.
He was formerly a Partner of Mayne and Baillieu Architects, a Director of Knight Frank Australia and a Board Member of Tourism Victoria, the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, the Melbourne Comedy Festival and the Australian Children’s Television Foundation.
Mr Baillieu recently served as Chair of the Victorian ANZAC Centenary Committee and Co-Chair of the Victorian Cladding Taskforce.
In 2012 he led Victoria’s Trade Mission to India, which at the time was the largest ever fielded.
He is currently the Patron of the Australia India Chamber of Commerce.
Matthew Hayden is a former international cricketer who played 103 Tests for Australia and scored 30 centuries. Mr Hayden was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for service to cricket in 2010. He has been a Board Member of the Institute for Australia India Engagement since 2018.
Matthew Hayden is a Director of The Hayden Way (Aust) Pty Ltd, a management company that is involved with many projects and organisations including both business and philanthropic.
Mr Hayden is a Board Director of Mahindra Automotive Australia Pty Ltd, a Board Director of the Institute for Australia India Engagement and is also member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
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