Australian businesses will be given the chance to learn about mining and education opportunities in Latin America in a two-day conference held in Sydney. Latin America is one of the world’s major mining investment destinations and as result the conference, Latin America Down Under, has attracted international ministers and influential business leaders. The conference aims to address how Australia’s education sector can provide human capital development needed for the sector to continue growing at its current rate. Austrade’s, Crispin Conroy, senior trade commissioner for Latin America, believes Latin America plays a vital role in Australia’s mining growth, possessing five of the top ten mining countries - Mexico, Peru, Chile, Brazil and Argentina, "Latin America is not only a major mining region but is also attracting a large share of the world’s mining investment and a hub for global exploration investment." Conroy said Austrade is concentrating on six emerging markets, the ‘Latin Six’ including Brazil, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Argentina and Colombia. "Austrade’s team of mining specialists located across the ‘Latin Six’ has been working hard to increase Australia’s mining participation and provide Australia’s world leading METS (Mining Equipment Technology Suppliers) industry with a larger customer base," Conroy said. Conroy believes numerous opportunities exist for Australia’s education sector in combating mining skills shortages, facing many countries, "Australia’s education and training institutions are equipped to provide a broad range of solutions which address the skills gap in the mining sector, preparing graduates for a Future Unlimited," Conroy said. "With Australia known as a pioneer in R&D for the mining industry and leader in innovative education and training, industry and education, providers are utilising various national government programs to deliver solutions for the mining sector."