To mark Australia Day in the United States, Hugh Jackman and I took part in a ‘Flicking of the Switch’ ceremony to light New York’s iconic Empire State Building in green and gold.

Australia and the United States are long-standing economic partners.

The United States is Australia’s most significant investor with over A$650 billion invested in 2013, and our third largest two-way trading partner in goods and services, which in 2013-14 was worth nearly A$60 billion.

The Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA) underpins our bilateral trade and investment relationship. This year marks the 10th anniversary of AUSFTA’s entry into force.

Australians are travelling to the United States in large numbers for tourism, study, work and business. An estimated 215,000 Australians are in the United States at any one time.

In 2013-14 more than 938,000 Australians visited the United States, making it the third most popular destination for Australian tourists.

In 2013, another 7,600 Australians travelled to the United States for study and exchange and almost 4,000 Australians entered on E3 professional work visas.

The Empire State Building will be lit in green and gold on 26 January 2015 from dusk until 2.00am.

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