Chinese Club of Queensland Chinese New Year Dinner 2017 (Year of the Rooster)
President, Patron, our Premier, members of the Executive Council, Your Honours, Leader of the Opposition, Consul General, many distinguished guests, including the Police Commissioner, ladies and gentlemen.
You would not be surprised that Kaye and I always look forward with eager anticipation to the Chinese Club’s annual Chinese New Year dinner.
The occasion is always marked by fervent energy and conviviality, and this is consistent with the spirit of celebration and renewal which denotes the commencement of the Lunar Year.
And the company on these occasions is invariably wonderful – and distinguished, too, such is the reach and influence of the Chinese Club of Queensland and its proud membership.
Tonight, following tradition, I offer special congratulations and best wishes to all those born in the Year of the Rooster, particularly those youngsters born 60 years ago during the last year of the Fire Rooster.
We have heard from our previous speaker elucidation of these features. I will not add to that, beyond noting that the characteristic of punctuality is confirmed to me every morning at 5am by the roosters of Paddington! And as to the Fire Rooster, the brilliance, passion and warmth of that element of fire, augurs well, I am told, for those willing to work hard – so well exemplified in our Chinese co-citizens!
And so tonight we acknowledge the hard work of the Chinese community in our wonderful State, service over many decades – centuries even – leading to immense contributions to business, politics, education, the sciences and the arts – indeed to all facets of Queensland life.
And it is reassuring to see these contributions receive wider public acclamation, such as through the announcement on Australia Day last week that Professor Max Lu, former Vice-President of The University of Queensland who is currently the University of Surrey’s Vice-Chancellor, became an Officer of the Order of Australia, and that is partly for his service to Australian-Chinese relations.
Events like tonight’s also give further strength and substance to the Queensland-China and Australia-China relationships, relationships Kaye and I were honoured to acknowledge last year when our Consul-General joined us at a formal dinner at Fernberg.
I wholeheartedly thank the Chinese Club of Queensland – particularly our Patron, Mr Peter Liu – for the typically warm and generous hospitality on offer tonight.
It is the opportunity for face-to-face, personal interaction which gives the Queensland-China relationship such depth and strength, and it is Kaye’s and my great honour to support that through our being here with you tonight. We wish you a rewarding and invigorating year ahead. Thank you all very much indeed. Gong Xi Fa Cai.