THE SPANISH-AUSTRALIAN
CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

La Camara aims to be the preeminent point of reference for the Spanish-Australian business community and to facilitate and foster the development of business relationships within this community.

La Camara achieves these aims through events such as corporate lunches, ministerial briefings, seminars, private boardroom functions, networking evenings and more relaxed cultural and cocktail events, as well as a variety of services and promotional opportunities for our members.

Events organised by La Camara allow both members and non-members to develop the professional contacts they need within the Spanish-Australian business community.

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News

Ingeteam introduces a new robust wind controller firmware development methodology

May 6, 2021 Ingeteam, the global specialist in wind energy drivetrain technology, announces that its firmware development methodology has been shown to significantly reduce the critical on-site validation and certification phase thanks to its robust qualification process. This speeds up the time to market and commercial production capacity of new wind farm developments whilst ensuring the highest level of reliability in the field. Securing the transmission capacity and interconnectivity of new wind turbines to the grid is a crucial moment during the installation of any new wind farm. This critical phase often involves up to six months of field tests to ensure that all the elements are working properly before the wind farm achieves full certification. At the heart of this process is the power converter connecting each turbine to the transmission network. The firmware program within the converter controls and ensures the correct electrical behavior and safe operation of the electrical grid, which is why its behavior must be rigorously tried and tested prior to installation. Ingeteam’s firmware development and validation process uses advanced simulation models to ensure their operation is reliable and deterministic. Specially adapted to meet each customer’s precise requirements, the firmware development procedure involves an iterative qualification process. Using Software-in-the-Loop (SiL) and Hardware-in-the-Loop (HiL) validation procedures, any issues found during the validation stage are quicky fed back into the development stage to be corrected. The SiL models allow detailed debugging down to individual breakpoints on the source code, while the HiL simulations, using real-time execution, provide full software and hardware controller integration testing. The clear advantage of this step being that the firmware tested is exactly the same as the firmware released to production. Eduardo Sanz, Technical Services Product Manager, R&D Power Converters, explained; “The constant evolution of grid codes and the unique grid conditions of each wind farm mean that firmware is increasingly complex. Any unexpected behavior can lead to serious issues affecting production availability, grid code compliance and even damage to turbine components. Our detailed step-by-step testing and validation methodology ensures that the controller and the production code are fully tested during the development stages. This minimizes the on-site validation and certification phase, reduces time to market and overall installation costs, ensuring peace of mind!”. Read more.

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CaixaBank leads green, social and sustainable bond issues in Spain and Portugal

May 5, 2021 CaixaBank is also ranked as the European bank with the highest volume of ESG bonds issued on the euro credit market. The global market has started the year posting record figures. CaixaBank has positioned itself as the leading bank in the issuance and placement of green, social and sustainable bonds (ESG) in the Spanish and Portuguese markets in the first quarter of 2021, according to rankings by Dealogic and Refinitiv. The bank has participated in the issuance of four green and two sustainable bonds, for a total amount of €6.75 billion. The most notable among these issuances are Iberdrola, Telefónica, EDP and the Autonomous Community of Madrid. The green, social and sustainable bond market is gaining a substantial market share, reaching a record global volume of $255 billion in the first quarter of 2021. This figure represents a 320% growth compared to the first quarter of 2020 and a volume equivalent to 50% of the total mobilised during 2020. In August 2019, CaixaBank approved the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) bond issuance framework, with the validation of Sustainalytics, featuring the mission of supporting the United Nations SDGs. Since the approval of this framework, CaixaBank has made five own bond issuances worth €5 billion. In 2019, it issued its first social bond which contributed to creating upwards of 1,000 companies and 8,200 jobs. In 2020, it issued its first green bond to fund renewable energy projects and energy-efficient buildings and its second social bond to curb the effects of COVID-19. Furthermore, in the first months of 2021, it has already issued two green bonds through which it will channel funds to finance projects that contribute to environmental sustainability. These figures position CaixaBank as the European bank with the highest volume of ESG bonds issued in the euro market. CaixaBank, committed to sustainability CaixaBank is one of the financial institutions most committed to sustainability, given that its Socially Responsible Banking Plan covers five significant principles of action that include a direct contribution to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Through its initiatives, the Bank is supporting environmentally friendly initiatives and projects that contribute to preventing and mitigating climate change and to encouraging the transition to a low-carbon economy as well as social development. In 2020, CaixaBank mobilised over €12 billion in sustainable financing, with more than €2 billion formalised in green financing and over €3 billion formalised in financing linked to ESG variables, especially those of an environmental nature such as curbing emissions and promoting energy efficiency. CaixaBank also participated in the issuance of 11 green, sustainable or social bonds, for a total amount of €7.4 billion. At the close of 2020, CaixaBank was ranked the 5th bank in European and the 9th worldwide in green and sustainable loans in the Top Tier League Tables by volume, according to Refinitiv. Read more.

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CaixaBank named Best Bank in Spain 2021 and Best Bank in Western Europe 2021 by Global Finance Magazine

April 30, 2021 The bank reaffirmed its first place ranking in Spain for the seventh consecutive year and was ranked as the best bank in Western Europe for the third time. The judges evaluated, among other factors, its financial stability, its support for the economy in an environment marked by COVID-19, and its leadership in banking consolidation on the continent following the merger agreement with Bankia. This recognition is in addition to others awarded by the magazine to the bank in recent months for its support to the economy and businesses, such as the awards for ‘Excellence in Leadership in Western Europe 2020’ and ‘Outstanding Achievement in Treasury Operations during the Covid pandemic in Western Europe 2021’. CaixaBank, chaired by José Ignacio Goirigolzarri and managed by Gonzalo Gortazar, has been recognised as the “Best Bank in Spain” for the seventh consecutive year and the “Best Bank in Western Europe” for the third time at the "Best Bank Awards" awarded each year by the US magazine Global Finance. The magazine's editors have singled out CaixaBank from among banks in 150 countries after consulting with analysts, banking sector consultants and others involved in the industry around the world. The jury singled out the bank for its financial stability, its support for the economy in an environment marked by COVID-19, and its leadership in banking consolidation on the continent following the merger agreement with Bankia, among other factors. The 28-year-old Best Bank Awards recognise the world's best banks that stand out for their growth, leadership and product and service innovation, among other things. This year, in addition, the magazine gave special recognition to those banks which, despite the difficult situation resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, have continued to stand by their clients to respond to their needs at all times, while strengthening their balance sheet to ensure sustainable growth over time. In 2020, despite the complex environment, CaixaBank maintained a high level of recurring commercial activity, with a general improvement in market penetration and growth in client loyalty. Its strength in digital banking, where the bank captured 67.6% of digital clients, and its broad territorial network has enabled the bank to support its clients in their financing needs, while strengthening its balance sheet and improving its efficiency. In response to the pandemic crisis, CaixaBank reinforced its commitment to clients and society by launching a broad package of measures aimed at mitigating the economic and social effects of COVID-19 and responding to the most affected groups. The bank approved nearly 400,000 moratorium requests from its clients in Spain, advanced unemployment and temporary suspension of employment benefits to 3.6 million people, wrote off the rent on housing it owned for 4,800 families, and approved financing to the business sector for EUR 83.7 billion, in addition to more than 184,000 loans from the ICO lines, for EUR 12.64 billion. CaixaBank has also positioned itself as a leader in banking consolidation on the European continent, with the merger agreement with Bankia, completed in March 2021. The merger, which creates the leading financial sector player in Spain, has given the bank the critical size and financial strength needed to adapt to a new environment marked by technological disruption and the economic and social challenges arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result of the merger, CaixaBank has become the benchmark bank in Spain with 20 million clients and EUR 623.8 billion in total assets, a volume that makes it the largest bank in the domestic market, with a dominant position in the European market, and a market capitalisation of more than EUR 20 billion. CaixaBank has also strengthened its leadership in terms of market share in all key products with a front-running position in: Deposits (24%), loans (26%) and long-term savings (29%), which includes savings insurance, mutual funds and pension plans. The bank has also achieved a balanced and diversified geographic presence, with the most extensive and specialised branch network in the sector. The combined entity has a presence in about 2,200 municipalities, and in 350 of those it is the only entity with any representation. The extensive reach of its network and digital capabilities (with 10 million digital clients in Spain) keep it continuously improving the client experience.  International recognition for CaixaBank's response to the pandemic These awards are amongst other international recognitions obtained in recent months by CaixaBank in its efforts to become a solution to the crisis generated by the pandemic. In addition to the ‘Best Bank in Spain’ and ‘Best Bank in Western Europe’ awards, Global Finance magazine has ranked CaixaBank as the only European entity to be a ‘Global leader in its response to the COVID-19 crisis’, as well as the best bank in Western Europe for its ‘Outstanding achievement in Treasury operations during the Covid pandemic in Western Europe 2021’. Euromoney also awarded CaixaBank for its ‘Excellence in Leadership in Western Europe 2020’, in its recognition of leading institutions in the face of the crisis. About Global Finance Global Finance magazine, founded in 1987 and based in New York, has a circulation of 50,000 and a readership in some 190 countries. The magazine provides analysis and articles for corporate and financial executives making strategic and investment decisions in multinational companies and financial institutions.  Its Best Bank Awards annually select the best banks and financial service providers, becoming a standard of excellence recognised by the global financial community. Read more.

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