Australia China Business Council Queensland Branch Chinese New Year Dinner 2021
Treasurer; Lord Mayor; Members of Parliament; Australia-China Business Council Queensland President, Mr Stephen Abbott and Members of the Board; distinguished guests; ladies and gentlemen.
I am delighted to join you once more for the celebration of the Spring Festival and in particular of Chinese New Year.
I at once acknowledge the traditional Indigenous owners of these lands and extend respectful greetings to Elders and emerging leaders.
I need not dwell on the difficult challenges faced by communities everywhere as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic this past 12 months.
But I am keen to highlight the resilience, sacrifice and hard work, innovation and agility with which communities responded.
The business sector has shown all of these qualities many times over in striving to meet community needs, despite the circumstances.
Though we in Australia have been relatively fortunate, clearly COVID-related challenges are not yet behind us. Nevertheless, we have good reason to look to the future with more optimism.
The key Chinese zodiac figure for the important year ahead, the Ox, gives us an important model to follow.
The Ox is characterised by hard work, positivity, and dedication. All of these will be needed as we continue to move further out of the shadow of COVID-19 and closer to the ‘new normal’.
Of course, COVID-19’s impact has not been restricted to our domestic sphere. The global pandemic has resulted in severe restrictions on international travel and has substantially affected the normal rhythm of our international relations, including our trade and investment links.
The positivity, dedication and hard work associated with the Year of the Ox will help us in this sphere too.
Along with goodwill, these characteristics will encourage us to meet current challenges and look to the future in a positive way.
Over many decades since its establishment, the Australia-China Business Council Queensland Branch, with its strong and extensive network of business links in Queensland and in China, has been ideally placed to play an important role in the bilateral relationship.
The fundamentals of the Queensland-China and Australia-China relationship remain sound and solid. The relationship continues to generate benefits to communities in both countries.
On that note of Year-of the Ox positivity, and as Governor and Patron, I thank and congratulate the Australia China Business Council and its partner organisations for their on-going work in promoting and encouraging Queensland-China business links.
And it is my great pleasure to wish all of those associated with the Council, and all those in the Chinese community in our State, a positive, productive and successful year of the Ox, 2021.