Our relationship with China

The Queensland-China relationship has come a long way since Australia-China diplomatic relations began in 1972. Drawing on a more than 30 years sister-state relationship with Shanghai, we have forged close trade, business, science and research, education and cultural ties. Not only are our two economies complimentary, we also enjoy strong people-to-people links.

Queensland is home to an active and thriving Chinese business community encompassing a diverse range of industries, products and services. Through organisations such as the Queensland Chinese Association of Scientists and Engineers, the community plays a key role in initiating and maintaining industry and academic links.

China has become one of our most important knowledge partners, with a number of ‘firsts’ between us. For example, Queensland was the first Australian state government to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Chinese Ministry of Science and Technology. Queensland is the only state Government to have a joint funding program with the Chinese Academy of Sciences—China’s leading research agency, think tank and advisory to government on science and technology.

Facts and figures

  • China is Queensland’s largest merchandise export market worth $15.3 billion in 2021, or about 19.3% of the state’s total merchandise export.
  • China is the largest and most valuable international visitor market for the state and in the year ending March 2020, 397,000 Chinese visitors spent almost $1.3 billion in Queensland.