Australia celebrated the 45th anniversary of its diplomatic relationship with China in December 2017.
The signing of the China Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA), which entered into force in December 2015, is set to transform the relationship between Australia and China. More than 86 per cent of Australia’s goods exports to China will enter duty free (worth more than $90 billion). Once the Agreement is fully implemented and tariff cuts are phased in, 96 per cent of Australian goods will enter China duty free.
China has become the largest trading partner with Australia and the largest export market for South Australia, representing 19.5 per cent of the total of South Australia’s export destinations.
ChAFTA also opens a range of new opportunities for South Australian service providers with enhanced market access for financial services companies, law firms, professional services suppliers, education services exporters, as well as health, aged care, hospitality, construction and manufacturing businesses.
China is also a source market for international students, accounting for 40 per cent of South Australia’s international student population – growing by 10.1 per cent in the year to October 2017.
International visitor numbers from China were up by 58 per cent in the year ending September 2017, compared to an increase of 12 per cent nationally.
To guide South Australia’s engagement with China the South Australian Government regularly reviews social and economic development trends in China to ensure the approach to market is targeted and focused.
For more than 32 years, South Australia has enjoyed a Sister-State relationship with Shandong Province in the People’s Republic of China.
In addition to Shandong, the South Australian Government has established new relationships with Shanxi, Shanghai and Guangdong Provinces, and are exploring new cooperative opportunities.
Memorandums of Understanding have been signed with the following Chinese Government organisations, including
- Foreign and Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of Shanxi Provincial People’s Government
- Shanghai Municipal Commission of Commerce (SCOFCOM)
South Australian trade representatives are strategically located in Jinan, the capital of Shandong Province, Shanghai and Hong Kong, embedded within Austrade offices. A dedicated China team is based in Adelaide, South Australia to support the states exporters to identify and explore opportunities in the greater China market.