China is Victoria's strongest market for export growth. Home to the world's largest population and a booming middle-class, an increasing demand for premium goods, services, ideas and knowledge have opened up key opportunities for Victorian businesses to establish valuable trade partnerships with China.
Opportunities for Victorian businesses looking to do business with China
Food & fibre
Victoria is Australia's largest supplier of food and fibre products to China. Since the China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) took force in 2015, significant export barriers have been removed, and Victoria's agribusiness is well placed to boost sales to China by exporting their premium food products and beverages.
International education is one of Victoria's major service-based exports. Our leading educational institutions, together with a reputation as one of the world's most liveable cities rank highly as an option for Chinese families and students, who will continue to seek the globally recognised education opportunities that Victoria offers.
Medtech, pharma & healthcare
With an ageing population and the implementation of healthcare reform, China's high demand for healthcare services provides key opportunities for Victoria's medical pharmaceutical and biotechnology businesses.
Victoria's reputation as world leaders in the Medical technologies and pharmaceutical industries places businesses in a strong position to address China's healthcare needs by exporting innovative products, knowledge and supply-chain solutions.
With nine airlines offering direct flights to Melbourne from China, the number of Chinese tourists visiting our shores has increased by record numbers. Victoria's tourism and hospitality businesses are provided with a large potential customer base seeking to access Melbourne and regional Victoria's distinct visitor experiences.
Transport, defence & construction technologies
China is seeking to develop its hi-tech and innovation industries. Victorian businesses with expert knowledge and skills in building high-quality, innovative infrastructure are provided substantial export opportunities in defence, engineering, specialist design and the advanced materials industries to meet China's infrastructure requirements.
Belt and Road Initiative
China's Belt and Road Initiative is one of the world’s largest and most ambitious trade and infrastructure plans to revive the Silk Road by creating two modern transit and trade corridors between China and Europe:
Victoria is the first and only Australian state to reach an MoU agreement on the Belt and Road Initiative with the Chinese government and marks an important step forward in China’s and Victoria’s relationship.
The MoU will provide support for Victorian businesses to unlock significant trade and investment opportunities in China.
- China’s total goods and services imports have grown by 241 per cent from 2005 until 2017.1
- The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA) makes it easier for Victorian businesses to export to China.
- Food and fibre products account for 65 per cent of Victoria's goods exports to China.2
- In 2017, 30 per cent of international students who commenced their studies in Victoria came from China3
- World Bank: weblink - https://data.worldbank.org/indicator/BM.GSR.GNFS.CD?contextual=default&end=2017&locations=CN&name_desc=false&start=2005&view=chart
- DFAT STARS Database, based on ABS Cat No 5368.0, June 2016 data
- Basic Pivot Table 2014 - 2017 - weblink https://internationaleducation.gov.au/research/International-Student-Data/Pages/InternationalStudentData2017.aspx#Pivot_Table
Victoria's China Strategy: Partnerships for Prosperity
In 2016, the Victorian Government launched Victoria's new China Strategy: Partnerships for Prosperity. The Strategy provided a forward plan to support economic growth in Victoria and in China, while deepening our understanding of each other's people and culture.
The Strategy set four ambitious ten year targets from 2016 to 2026, across trade, investment, visitors and students.
Discover how your business can export to China
- Asialink Business' China Country Starter Pack provides a comprehensive guide to conducting business in China.
- The Victorian Government Trade and Investment (VGTI) offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Nanjing, Chengdu and Hong Kong provide tailored market intelligence, insights and guidance for your export business. They can also connect you with overseas buyers and industry partners in China.
- Austrade's China Market Profile provides further detail and facts about the Chinese market.
- Victorian Government, through Business Victoria provides support through a range of grants, vouchers and assistance programs.
- The International Chamber House (ICH) in Melbourne's city centre is a business networking hub for international bilateral chambers and business associations. It provides members access to meeting rooms with video-conferencing, flexible work spaces and a function space for international business development events.
- Built around three themes that will guide the development of the 2016 China-Victoria relationship, the China Strategy: Partnerships for Prosperity PDF, 2.5 MB sets out a blueprint to increase exports to China by more than $5 billion over the next 10 years.
- Visit our regional insights page and read seasonal updates from our Regional Specialists