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Sister-Cities' Leaders Guest Chinese Consulate-General

2008-06-04

At the invitation of Consul-General Qiu Shaofang, thirteen leaders and representatives from the councils of ten China's sister-cities guested Mr. Qiu's official residence on 3 June for a dinner.

Consul-General Qiu welcomed the guests by pay tribute to the great and constructive efforts they have invested in developing sister-city friendship with China. "The China-Australia relationship has grown from strength to strength" he said, "yet the huge volume of people-to-people exchanges, which embodies the massive support from the grassroots of both countries, is the most exciting part of this bilateral relationship. Only the people-to-people friendship is the China-Australia relationship in real fundamental terms. Most of the credit goes to the blossoming sister-city relationships between the two countries"

Consul-General Qiu noted "most of the sister-city relationships are relatively young compared to the 36-year history of China-Australia bilateral relationship…which means we just barely start citizen diplomacy, with much left to be desired by both Chinese and Australians".

During the banquet(Consul General QIU Shaofang is on the right side in the picture, the fourth from nearest to farest)

In conclusion, Consul-General pledged to render the support of himself and the Chinese Consulate-General to the development of your sister-city relationship "any time, any how".

On behalf of the guests, Deputy Lord Mayor of Sydney Councilor Tony Pooley, responded Consul-General Qiu's speech. He echoed Consul-General Qiu's remarks that "only the people-to-people friendship is the China-Australia relationship in real fundamental terms".

"The reason why we could have done so much is because we enjoy great support from the people for the development of these sister-city relationships". Councilor Pooley commented, "and with this massive support, we will continue our efforts in promoting that development".

At the dinner table, the councilors present also exchanged ideas about how to develop sister-city relationship with China. Deputy Mayor of Burwood Councilor Ernest Wong proposed to establish a platform, such as Australia-China Sister-Cities Association, to further network the sister cities between the two countries. This idea was widely applauded and unanimously agreed to.

Hosts and guests posed for the photo after the banquet

The visiting guests were Deputy Lord Mayor Tony Pooley of Sydney, Mayor, Mayor Greg Davies and General Manager Alan Travers of Penrith, Mayor Nick Katris of Kogarah, Mayor Pat Reilly of Willoughby, Mayor Vince Badalati of Hurstville, Mayor Le Lam of Auburn, Councilor Shaokuett Moselmane of Rockdale, Deputy Mayor Ernest Wong and Councilor Chris Christogeorge of Burwood, General Manager Ron Moore of Blacktown and Mr. & Mrs Murray Block, Representative from the Council of Mosman.

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