Western Australia’s Asian Engagement, and Youth Minister, Peter Tinley delivered the opening address on the third day of the Australia-China Emerging Leaders’ Summit today.
Organised by the Australia-China Youth Association, the Summit brings together more than 80 emerging leaders including students and young professionals, half of whom are from China and half from Australia.
It is the first time Perth has hosted the bi-annual summit which aims to develop participants’ professional skills and their understanding of bilateral interests as well as help them to build person to person connections.
China has been WA’s biggest export market since 2007, with annual exports having grown from $11.7 billion in 2006-07 to $68.4 billion in 2018 and China is WA’s largest market for mineral exports and for agricultural and food products.
In addition Chinese investment in WA now totals more than $30 billion with more than 70 Chinese companies with a presence in, or an interest in projects, around the State.
China is also WA’s biggest source of international student enrolments, with 8,452 Chinese students – an increasingly important source of tourists – enrolled in WA institutions in 2018.
As well as international trade, today’s summit considered issues including diplomacy, entrepreneurship, mining innovation and healthcare.
As stated by Asian Engagement and Youth Minister Peter Tinley:
“Events such as the Summit showcase WA as a destination in itself but also as a source of expertise, skills, and innovation, and of course a vast diversity of quality mineral, energy and agricultural products.
“The friendships and connections these young people make here will be vital in building and deepening future engagement between WA and China and the broader Indo-Pacific.”