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Public Papers - 1992 - January

Remarks Announcing Funding for the Australian Center for American Studies in Canberra


Thank you, sir, for those kind words. And let me just say how pleased I am to be here helping to launch this Australian Center for American Studies. We share a lot in common. You touched on that, sir, culturally, historically, even linguistically. But differences do exist. And we can and should do much more to foster greater understanding.

There's much that we can learn from each other, education and the sciences, certainly in trade, economics. Study and exchange in these areas will not only benefit our two nations but enrich the lives of those involved and increase the productive capacities of the participants in our two countries' economies.

Mutual understanding is not only enriching but also is a vital prerequisite to peace and prosperity. The Fulbright program has brought about the exchange of thousands of Australians and Americans. And among the many distinguished alumni of that program are my host in Sydney yesterday, Nick Greiner, and U.S. Ambassador, our U.N. Ambassador, Tom Pickering, who received his master's degree from Melborne University.

The benefits of educational interchange come in many, many ways. The late Gordon Samstag, an American artist who taught at the South Australia School of Fine Arts, endowed that school with a scholarship fund of million to support Australian students studying abroad. And in 1988, former Prime Minister Bob Hawke helped to launch this Center for Australian Studies at the U.T., at the University of Texas at Austin, contributing ,000 Australian dollars to the Center.

Today I'm pleased to announce that the U.S. Information Agency is similarly contributing ,000 to the Australian Center for American Studies. I hope this center will lead to an expansion of American studies in Australia. More broadly, I have spoken today about our intention to host an education ministerial under APEC auspices. And our Secretary of Education will invite APEC education ministers to Washington next summer. And I'm very enthusiastic about this addition to APEC's agenda. It seems only right that it not all be about politics and war and peace. We're talking here about an educational agenda.

The challenge the future holds is to find new ways to increase mutual understanding. And I am confident that the Australian Center will open many new paths for Americans and Australians to deepen these ties, deepen our ties and help ensure prosperity for our citizens.

So, this is a good day, a happy day. And I know I speak for Barbara when I say that we are both proud to have a part in it.

And to those Australians here, let me just tell you what I told our joint meeting in here. We've really had a good time here. And your hospitality has been absolutely fantastic. And I think it says something about how this center can prosper. People just get that feeling of mutual camaraderie, et cetera. That in itself, I think, will help in these troubled times.

So, thank you all very much for being a part of this.

Note: The President spoke at 2:20 p.m. in Mural Hall at Parliament House. In his remarks, he referred to Nick Greiner, Premier of New South Wales.

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