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Tasmania's relationship with China goes from strength to strength

On 18 November 2014, Tasmania welcomed China's President Xi Jinping and his wife Madam Peng Liyuan to the state. This was a once-in-a-generation visit, creating unparalleled exposure for Tasmania in China.

Over the past twelve months the Government has taken every opportunity to build Tasmania's personal, business, political and cultural ties with China, and to capitalise on the exposure generated by President Xi's visit.

This has included hosting the inaugural TasInvest forum at the same time as the President's visit, the Premier's trade and investment mission to China in March 2015 and a further delegation in September led by the Minister for State Growth. The missions saw MOUs and agreements signed in the key investment areas of agriculture, tourism, education and Antarctic research.

As well as a surge in the number of Chinese visitors travelling to Tasmania, the increased level of engagement has yielded other immediate economic benefits, including:

  • an increase in the value of international education by Chinese students in Tasmania
  • an increase in the estimated value of Atlantic salmon, cherries and apples exported from Tasmania to China and Hong Kong
  • the Tasmanian Government and the University of Tasmania jointly signing partnership agreements with Chinese universities in agriculture, marine and maritime research and training, and Devil Facial Tumour Disease research.

China is the world's second largest economy. It is also Tasmania's largest international trading partner and largest source of international tourists and international students. In the year to September 2015 Tasmania exported goods to China, including Hong Kong, with an estimated value of $652 million, comprising one quarter of the state's total international merchandise exports.

Find out more by reading the China Engagement Report (3MB PDF), which also outlines next steps for the Government in continuing to build this relationship.