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Alan Oxley

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Alan Oxley is an Australian academic, a lobbyist for free trade agreements, a climate change skeptic and trenchant critic of the Kyoto protocol on greenhouse gas emissions.

Oxley is the founder and director of Melbourne-based company ITS Global and is chairman of the Australian APEC Study Centre at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. He is also the director of the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement Business Group, a corporate lobby group which he established to lobby in favour of the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement. He also consults to the Australian forest sector and Malaysian logging giant Rimbunan Hijau [1].

Oxley is a regular participant in Lavoisier Group events, and is the host of the Asia-Pacific pages of Tech Central Station - a conservative website funded by ExxonMobil and General Motors Corporation among others.



According to a biographical note Oxley "served as Australian Ambassador to the GATT, the predecessor of the World Trade Organisation from 1985 to 1989, and was the first Australian to serve as GATT Chairman. Prior to that, he represented Australia in Singapore, at the United Nations in New York and in Geneva. He played a key role in creating the ground-breaking coalition of agricultural exporters, the Cairns Group." Oxley is now a member of the Australian Government's Foreign Affairs Council.

Climate Change "Dirty Dozen"

In a talk given in Australia on 20 February 2006, Clive Hamiliton (director of The Australia Institute) identifies Alan Oxley as one of Australia's climate change "dirty dozen" (these include: Hugh Morgan, John Eyles, Ron Knapp, Alan Oxley, Peter Walsh, Meg McDonald, Barry Jones, Chris Mitchell, Ian MacFarlane, Alan Moran, Malcolm Broomhead, and John Howard):

"The Chairman of Monash University's APEC Study Centre and former trade ambassador, Oxley has been involved in almost every major initiative and lobbying effort of the climate skeptics brigade since climate change first came on to the public agenda in the early 1990s. He has successfully traded on his former ambassadorial status to convince Australia's "serious" media that his views are based on credible analysis." [2]

Alan Oxleys stated opinion on climate change is that "there is no reasonable certainty that increases in atmospheric carbon dioxide from human activity cause significant global warming. "[3]


Free Trade

Oxley founded a private consultancy company called International Trade Strategies (ITS) in 1990. ITS was a leading promoter of a free trade deal between Australia and the US. According to its website, ITS also has "close associations" with a number of right wing US think tanks, including the American Enterprise Institute, the Competitive Enterprise Institute and the Heritage Foundation. [4]

Oxley is the Chairman of the Australian APEC Study Centre, a pro-free trade think tank based at Monash University in Melbourne, Australia. The Centre also advocates against the Kyoto Protocol and other measures to avert climate change.

Through his company ITS, in 2001 Oxley established the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement Business Group [5], a corporate lobby group in favour of the Australia-United States Free Trade Agreement.

In 2005 Oxley founded and is currently chairman of World Growth, a free market think tank.

Climate skeptic

In 2003, Oxley organised a conference of Australia's climate change skeptics at Parliament House in Canberra. Entitled "Managing Climate Change: Practicalities and Realities in a post-Kyoto future", it was run by the Australian APEC Study Centre, but its website was produced by International Trade Strategies, Oxley's consultancy company.

Oxley created climate sceptic site which aims to "improve understanding in the climate change debate"

Forestry Issues

ITS Global established Forestry and Development in 2005 based primarily to counter negative press of large Malaysian logger Rimbunan Hijau. ITS Global has also advised the Australian Government on sustainable forestry issues which included addressing illegal logging in the Asia Pacific region. In 2010 a group of scientists condemned Oxley for his lobbying on behalf of pulp-wood and palm oil companies in Indonesia [[6]].

Palm oil

Alan Oxley is Chairman of the group World Growth International While ostensibly a group promoting international development through free trade and globalisation, a key focus of World Growth seems to be opposing regulation (often environmental) that would restrict in some way access of palm oil to EU and US markets. For instance, he has been highly critical of European Union legislation designed to ensure that imported biofuels deliver some degree of greenhouse gas benefit [[7]].


  • Alan Oxley, Seize the Future: How Australia Can Prosper in the New Century, Allen & Unwin, July 2000.
  • Alan Oxley, The Challenge of Free Trade, St Martin's Press, 1990.
  • New Directions in Australia's Trade - Trends and Strategies to 2010. (2001).
  • What the WTO Agreement on Subsidies and Countervailing Measures means for Australian Business. (2001).
  • Expanding Processed Food Exports: Priorities and Strategies for Joint Action on Market Access by Government and Industry. (1997).
  • Review and Analysis of WTO Agreements for Baker and McKenzie. Kluwer: The Hague
  • International Trade and Environment Agreements on CD ROM

Other SourceWatch resources

Contact information

Phone 61 (3) 9654 8323
Mobile phone: 61 417 358 462
Collins Place, Level 26, 35 Collins Street
GPO Box 622, Melbourne, 3001

External links

Articles about Oxley

  • Mary Robinson, "response to "Trading Away Good Health" article", June 29, 2005
  • Clive Hamiliton, "The Dirty Politics of Climate Change", Speech to the Climate Change and Business Conference, 20 February, 2006.
  • WWF Australia, "Oxley’s skewed agenda won’t help PNG", WWF Online, September 28, 2006
  • Don Henry and Steve Shallhorn, "PNG forests lost in the spin cycle", The Australian, October 14, 2006
  • Rhett Butler, "Scientists blast greenwashing by front groups",, October 27, 2010
  • Andrew Revkin, "Scientists Spar With Defender of Palm Oil and Pulp Firms", New York Times, October 29, 2010

Articles by Oxley

  • Alan Oxley, "Caution: overhead power trip", Australian Financial Review, May 27, 2003.
  • Alan Oxley, "NGOs trade off principle for position", Australian Financial Review, August 25, 2003.
  • Alan Oxley, "Trade pact crucial to prosperity", Australian Financial Review, January 19, 2003.
  • Alan Oxley, "US holds the key to our success", Australian Financial Review January 2 2004. (no weblink at present)
  • Alan Oxley, "Change the climate on emissions", The Australian, April 05, 2005.
  • Alan Oxley, "Unlike Kyoto, this climate deal suits us fine", Online Opinion, August 3, 2005
  • Alan Oxley, "Oxfam's Dark Side", Tech Central Station, February 28, 2006.
  • Alan Oxley, "A global bully on the loose", The National, February 29, 2006
  • "Trade expert slams Greenpeace's claims against Rimbunan Hijau", Business Times (Malaysia), July 27 2006.
  • Alan Oxley, "Radical Ambitions". Tech Central Station, August 9, 2006.
  • Alan Oxley, "A skewed vision from team green", The Australian, September 16, 2006
  • Alan Oxley, "Guess who’s coming to dinner?", The National, September 26, 2006.
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