NSW Premier Mike Baird today attended a tree planting ceremony with the Governor of Guangdong, His Excellency Zhu Xiaodan, at the Chinese Garden of Friendship in Sydney.
Governor Zhu visited Sydney to attend the Joint Economic Meeting to progress in initiatives as part of the NSW-Guangdong Sister State relationship.
This year marks the 35th anniversary of the Sister State relationship, which was the first of its kind to be signed between an Australian State and Chinese province.
Mr Baird said he was pleased to join Governor Zhu to plant a lychee tree, iconic to Guangdong, in the Chinese Garden of Friendship in Darling Harbour, Sydney.
“The planting of the iconic lychee tree reflects the strength and growing relationship between our State and Guangdong province,” Mr Baird said.
“Guangdong is the economic powerhouse of China, just as NSW is the engine room of the Australian economy. The friendship that has been fostered over the past 35 years has placed our states at an economic advantage in each of our respective nations.
“Our Sister State relationship has prospered over the past 35 years and the NSW Government is committed to further strengthening it in the years to come,” Mr Baird said.
Minister for Citizenship and Communities Victor Dominello witnessed the tree planting and said NSW had benefited from the contributions of generations of Chinese Australians.
“This State is home to 400,000 people who were born in China or have Chinese ancestry, many who can trace their roots back to Guangdong,” Mr Dominello said.
“We have enjoyed strong people-to-people links with Guangdong for more than a century and the Chinese Gardens were opened in 1988 as a tribute to the friendship between the cities of Sydney and Guangzhou.
“The garden is located near Sydney’s Chinatown, a symbol of the connection between the people of China and NSW, dating back to the arrival of the first Chinese migrants in 1818.
“Our partnership has evolved rapidly over the past 35 years through education, trade and migration and we look forward to this continuing into the future,” Mr Dominello said.