World-class academics will spotlight Cairns’ budding link with China next week at a major economic conference.
About 120 delegates are expected to attend the 28th annual conference of the Chinese Economics Society Australia, which will be held at the Cairns Institute from Sunday to Tuesday.
The public from the Far North is invited to register for the event, which will include a forum on strategies to attract more Chinese tourists to the region.
Speakers will include Dr George Chen of Tourism Research Australia and Philip Pearce, Professor of Tourism at James Cook University.
Cairns Institute project manager Jennifer McHugh said the event was a “feather in the Cairns cap” and a rare opportunity for local tourism operators.
“This is an opportunity for the Far North business community to bond with academics and other distinguished Chinese guests,” she said.
“The fact that CESA chose to host the event here is incredible and reflects the continuing ties the High North has with China.
“The Cairns Institute is all about creating conversations, and that’s an important dialogue to have.”
With delegates expected to spend several days in the area, McHugh said the conference would also boost the local economy.
The event comes as the number of Chinese visitors to the Far North is experiencing strong growth.
CESA President and JCU Economics Lecturer Sizhong Sun said Cairns was well positioned to take advantage of China’s growing middle class.
“The bond between Australia and China is growing stronger and Cairns has a competitive advantage due to its tourism industry,” he said.
“The growing middle class in China will be a huge market for tourism, education and agriculture.”
Mr. Sun encouraged the Far North business community to register for the public forums, which he called “great networking events.”
“All of this information should help people in the local industry make key decisions about the future of their businesses. “
Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt will open the conference.
The two public forums – on tourism and Chinese politics respectively – cost $ 99 and will be held Tuesday from 1 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
The Cairns Institute is based on the JCU campus.
To register, visit www.cairnsinstitute.jcu.edu.au or call 4232 1888.