Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen.
I’m delighted to be here today at Austcham West China’s networking lunch for Austrade’s 2018 Australian Dairy Mission.
很高兴 出席 澳大利亚商会 华西分会 举办的 澳大利亚 奶牧业 午宴。
The importance of the dairy industry to Australian agriculture cannot be overstated. It is one of our agricultural economy’s key sectors, ranking third in value behind beef and wheat.
We are a dairy exporting powerhouse, ranking fourth globally in terms of world trade share. Of course, China is now an increasingly important part of that story.
Greater China is now our largest export market, at almost AUD1 billion or one-third of our total exports. The reasons for this are well-known.
The Australian dairy industry offers a largely pasture-based, free range, production system that ensures a consistently high-standard product. Our quality and food safety processes are amongst the best in the world, with traceability throughout the entire supply chain. And we provide a breadth of processing capacity and flexibility that offers real choice for Chinese customers.
That is why it is so important for Australian companies to visit here and see the opportunities with their own eyes.
Taking southwest China as an example, the region as a whole had an average GDP growth rate of 9.5 per cent last year, against a nationwide average of 6.9 per cent. Meanwhile, average per capita income growth stood at nearly 10 per cent.
以中国西南地区为例：去年，中国的 GDP 增速为 6.9%，而西南地区 GDP 平均 增速达到了 9.5%。 同时，人均收入也增长了差不多10%。
Southwest China – as with the rest of the country - is therefore in the midst of a consumer boom, with a rapidly expanding middle class eager for the types of high-quality agricultural produce the Australian dairy industry is well-placed to provide.
中国正经历着一轮消费升级，西南地区也不例外。快速增长的中产阶级群体愿意消费 高品质的农产品， 澳大利亚奶牧业正好能满足这样的需求。
As a government, Australia’s active engagement locally means we are genuinely seen as a heavy hitter here, with a competitive advantage that we don’t always enjoy in the eastern provinces. This, combined lower tariffs because of the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement, means you could not have picked a more opportune time to visit the southwest.
But perhaps the most important part of the Australia-China dairy partnership is the mutually beneficial cooperation that’s been nurtured over the years.
Take the example of Burra Foods, one of Australia’s key dairy bulk ingredient suppliers. In 2016, Fuyuan Farming Co, one of China’s largest dairy consortiums, invested over AUD300 million in the dairy processor. This allowed Burra in 2017 to announce an AUD24.5 million expansion into infant formula.
举个例子， Burra食品是澳大利亚的重要奶源供应商。2016年，中国乳业巨头富源牧业向Burra 投资 3亿多澳元，让Burra有实力于次年斥资 2,450万澳元进军婴幼儿奶粉市场。
The partnership has therefore allowed Burra to move up into a higher value-added supply chain, while at the same time allowing Fuyuan to secure a stable source of high quality Australian product.
I look forward to seeing similar success stories in the future among those of you gathered here today.
On that note, let me emphasise that the Australian Consulate-General in Chengdu, through both DFAT and Austrade, stands ready to assist you in whatever way possible as you explore opportunities in the southwest.
I wish you all the best for the rest of your visit.