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Trade Minister to visit China.

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Media release

6 August 2008

Trade Minister Visit to China Minister for Trade, Simon Crean, will visit Beijing and Guangzhou 7-13 August to host "Business Club Australia" events, the Australian Government’s trade and investment promotion program for the Olympic Games and to lead a Clean Energy business delegation.

"Business Club Australia (BCA) will bring more than 3000 Australian, Chinese and other international businesspeople together at targeted business matching events covering sectors such as financial services, the sports and events industry and environmental services," Mr Crean said.

"Reflecting their world recognised sports facility design, construction and management expertise, Australian companies have already been successful in winning a number of contracts for the 2012 London Olympics.

"The Beijing networking event will provide Australian business with the opportunity to showcase their expertise for future international sporting events including the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou, the 2010 Commonwealth Games in New Delhi and other opportunities at the 2012 London Olympics," said Mr Crean.

"Austrade’s Clean Energy mission will promote Australia’s clean energy capabilities to key Chinese energy sector representatives in Beijing and Guangzhou."

The mission includes world leaders in clean energy, such as wind energy developer Roaring 40s from Tasmania, and the University of NSW, which is developing partnerships with Chinese institutions on photovoltaic solar cells.

In Beijing, Mr Crean will also meet Commerce Minister Chen Deming and other senior Chinese officials to investigate options for concluding the WTO Doha Round, and to reinforce Australia's commitment to intensifying negotiations for a high-quality, comprehensive Free Trade Agreement with China.

"This meeting will build on the agreement reached during the Prime Minister’s and my visit to Beijing in April to unfreeze the FTA negotiations, and will follow a number of highly constructive discussions I held with Minister Chen in Geneva late last month on the WTO

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Doha Round of trade negotiations."

Mr Crean’s visit to Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong Province in southern China, will provide opportunities for dialogue with key provincial leaders on Australian commercial and trade interests in one of the fastest growing economic regions of the world. In 2007,

southern China took 20 per cent of Australia’s exports to China, equivalent to Australia’s 9th largest export market.

Mr Crean will promote Australia’s clean energy capabilities through a keynote address to key Chinese government officials and representatives of leading Chinese energy companies at a high-level Clean Energy seminar.

China is Australia’s largest overall trading partner, our second largest export market for goods, and our third largest market for services. It is also the largest source of overseas students studying in Australia. Two-way trade in goods and services grew 15% in 2007 to reach $58 billion.

Media Inquiries: Mr Crean's office 02 6277 7420 - Departmental Media Liaison 02 6261 1555

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