By CGTN’s Cheng Lei
Halfway through another strong year for bilateral trade and investments, the Australia-China Business Awards were handed out on Thursday. This event used to be dominated by expatriates. Now it's a mix of Aussie and Chinese faces. The record number and width of submissions show how the business relationship has expanded and diversified.
China-Aussie business is more about how the business gets done. The George Institute is an example, working with Chinese health providers, its innovative model has helped lift the standard of research and preventative policies in China.
Its executive director Craig Anderson said it got funding from government, research organizations, and also industry. And its partnership with academics, public health and clinicians help it to do the best research and business in China.
A four-time winner and past judge reflects on what's new about China-Aussie business. Changes in categories are obvious over the past decade, from “mining to food to education, now healthcare and tourism,” according to Susan Heffernan, the CEO of Aussie design-led production company Soozar.
Another trend is more small and medium enterprises investing both ways. Melbourne-based Evolution Health has become China's best-selling international probiotics brand after just two years. Its managing director Ben Mcharg said the success is thanks to its own innovative products and accurate marketing through Chinese social media.
Meanwhile, overseas integrations have become the latest “fashion” between Chinese and Aussie companies, the fastest way to optimize the resources and maximize the benefits. After acquiring Aussie Rio Tinto, the subsidiary of China’s Yancoal is the largest coal producer in Australia, and its general manager Wu Xiangqian owed the success to integration.
“We've gone for a mix of Australian and Chinese cultures. In terms of management, we use Australian management systems. Chinese companies going abroad must know local regulations well and also respect workers' rights,” Wu noted.
Winning advice for other businesses is to look for bilateral opportunities. While Heffernan stressed more “flexibility” when doing business bilaterally, Mcharg suggested focusing on “unique” opportunities and investing more in marketing.
Be it wind and solar farms in Australia or retirement homes in China, as the China-Aussie business relationship diversifies the winning formulas for business are becoming just as varied.