Thurs Dec 16 – ACBC Vic hosted its final event for 2021 – Strategic China Briefing End of Year Wrap-up with Victorian Commissioner to China Brett Stevens.
Moderated by ACBC National Executive Officer and ACBC Victoria CEO Virginia Birrell, Brett updated attendees on three main topics: the recent China International Import Expo, information on the recently opened Vic House, and the evolving situation with international students.
Brett remained cautiously optimistic about the future of Victoria-China trade relations. Victoria retains the largest presence in China of any Australian state with trade & investment offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Nanjing, Chengdu and Hong Kong and remains committed to growing and maintaining the economic relationship with China.
China International Import Expo
The annual China International Import Expo took place in Shanghai in November. Global Victoria maintained a 300sqm space in the food & agriculture hall and 30 Victorian agricultural companies participated. This included an open kitchen with cooking and product demonstrations as well as two livestreaming events attaining a viewership of 17.5 million people.
Livestreams included interviews of all present Victorian companies and a further 20+ Victorian companies speaking about their products. Visitor numbers, which notably included the Vice-Mayor of Shanghai, were strong and indicate that among consumers, there is no anti-Australian sentiment.
The newly opened centre situated on The Bund in the heart of Shanghai. Vic House is a 900m2 3-story integrated trade promotion facility used for B2B meetings for importers, distributors and retailers.
Importantly, it provides a permanent presence for Victorian products in Shanghai to facilitate trade. It includes multiple conference rooms, a permanent product display area and an open demonstration kitchen and event area, overall providing the experience of a permanent expo.
Since launch, Vic House has hosted events for alternative protein, wine tasting and the Jiangsu-Victoria friendship dinners celebrating the sister-state relationship. Further events planned include Dairy Australia’s China scholarship program, as well as promoting the Victorian Cherry season and other fruits.
Vic House has a WeChat mini-program that makes it easy to look at the facility and book events.
Contact Jesse Gong for more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Brett summarised the present situation for Chinese international students studying at Victorian universities and what the next year might have in store.
The Victorian Government opened its international study hub in Shanghai in March of this year as part of its international education recovery plan, assisting with visa applications as well as providing virtual pre-departure assistance sessions. Workers at the study hub also help facilitate student arrivals and assist remote learners.
After travel opens up in the future, the study hub can evolve to become a connecting point for Victorian students and providers on visits to China.
Is Victoria House free for Australian Businesses who wish to exhibit there?
Should we be pessimistic or optimistic about the relationship between Australia and China in 2022?
Is Victoria better placed than Australia inc? (on trade and investment)
Any impact on consumer confidence and demand for high-quality products? (Particularly in health and food)
Who are the winners/losers of the current Aust/China trade dispute?
What is the sentiment like amongst international students studying at Victorian Universities in China and will they return to Victoria in the new year?