Monday, 17 September 2012

Victoria-China Engagement Strategy

The Premier Ted Baillieu released the Victoria-China Engagement Strategy on the eve of the super trade mission to China. Whilst reading the policy Engaging China - Strengthening Victoria I found some strong personal links in the introduction by the Premier Ted Baillieu.

Ian Wong pictured with his father James Yates Wong and a photo of his great grandfather Chan Wong from Toolamba.

The policy celebrates the links between the arrival of gold rush chinese and focusses on the current opportunities in China for Victorian higher education providers. I am a descendant of a gold rush Chinese market gardener Chan Wong and my recent appointment to Monash University is to establish the Master of Industrial Design (Double Masters) in Suzhou China.

Monash University Master of Industrial Design Program Director Ian Wong is a descendant of a Chinese market gardener who arrived during Victoria's gold rush in the 1800s.

Victoria’s relationship with China has never been more significant.

China is our biggest trading partner and a major source of investment, migration and knowledge. China’s growth has been, and will continue to be, a significant driver of our State’s prosperity.

Victoria and China have a long history of friendship and collaboration. Our connection dates back to the goldfields in the 1850s, when we laid the foundation for a thriving Chinese community and today’s vibrant State.

TheVictorian Government’s China Strategy outlines a plan to strengthen our ties so all Victorians can take part in trade, educational or cultural engagement with China.

Relationships are at the heart of this strategy – relationships between businesses, between schools, technical colleges and universities, between communities and between individuals. The role of governments is to encourage and facilitate these vital ties.

The economic and social changes accompanying China’s rapid development present many exciting opportunities. China’s growth and expanding middle class will increase demand for quality consumer goods and services, including Victoria’s outstanding education, tourism, and food and beverages.

The progress of China’s large second and third tier cities will create great potential for Victoria’s world-class knowledge-based industries, such as urban design.

Chinese companies entering the Victorian marketplace are bringing vital investment, as well as new skills, knowledge and technology, and opportunities to collaborate through research and development.
Victoria can learn from China too, as we tackle shared policy challenges.

The task ahead is to build our relationship in corporate, cultural and civic areas, develop education partnerships and language skills, raise Victoria’s profile and promote our expertise, and strengthen and broaden relationships with Chinese governments, businesses and communities.

The Victorian Government is working to create a new chapter in our State’s long and successful engagement with China, based on strong cultural understanding, closer economic ties and a long-term commitment.

We have made a good start in implementing this strategy. I look forward to working with my fellow Victorians and with our friends in China to build on this progress.

The Hon Ted Baillieu MLA
Premier of Victoria 
Minister for the Arts

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