Australian Financial Review
by Angus Grigg
Former trade minister Andrew Robb has joined investment bank Moelis & Company, where he will focus on deals with China.
It is Mr Robb's second appointment since leaving politics at the recent federal election, after he took up a role advising Geelong healthcare start-up, CNSDose.
The role with Moelis, a New York-listed investment bank, will see Mr Robb mainly helping Chinese companies looking to enter the Australian market.
He will have the title of independent adviser.
Moelis also has an asset management business focused on wealthy Chinese wishing to obtain an Australian passport, through the Significant Investor Visa program.
Mr Robb was responsible for redesigning this program while in government to tilt the required $5 million in investment away from passive bonds, towards higher risk venture capital and small company investments.
Moelis says it has about $1 billion in assets under management from this program.
As a Minister in the Abbott and Turnbull governments, Mr Robb was responsible for concluding long-stalled free-trade deals with China, Japan and South Korea.
Unlike many in the Coalition he was also favourably disposed towards Chinese investment in Australia and has advocated Beijing playing a larger role in region affairs.
Mr Robb was an early voice calling for Australia to join the Chinese-led, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and at one stage even called for a review of the ban on Chinese telecommunications firm, Huawei, bidding for federal government contracts.
"Moelis provides me with an outstanding global platform to continue my passion of building business connections between Australia, China and other Asian countries," Mr Robb said in a statement.
He will assist the firm in both its investment banking and asset management businesses.