Victorian NBL and AFL teams will be on show in China this week headlining a major trade mission led by the Andrews Labor Government to promote the state’s sporting capabilities.
Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula is leading the week-long mission, which is taking more than 20 delegates from 16 companies and organisations, including La Trobe University and the University of Melbourne, to meet with potential investors in the huge market of China.
China is undertaking a five-year national plan to grow its sports sector to around $900 billion by building thousands of new sporting facilities and developing innovative sports technologies for its athletes.
Victoria is home to many sport technology, science and infrastructure companies as well as elite teams and leagues with the skills needed to deliver on China’s big ambitions.
By connecting Victorian companies to opportunities in China, the Labor Government is helping them attract the investment they need to grow and create jobs for Victorians.
The Victorian sports sector currently employs more than 65,000 full time jobs across the state.
NBL newcomers South East Melbourne Phoenix is playing their first ever game in Nanjing against the Jiangsu Dragons as part of the 40th anniversary celebrations of the Jiangsu-Victoria Sister State relations. They will also play basketball legend Yao Ming’s former team the Shanghai Sharks.
St Kilda FC will play Port Adelaide in Shanghai in Round 11 of the 2019 AFL season, the first time a Victorian team will be involved in a match for Premiership points in China.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula
“This is a landmark opportunity to promote the great relationship Victoria has with China and gives us a unique opportunity to showcase Aussie Rules to an estimated four million viewers.”
“Through our trade mission, we’re aiming to deepen our partnership with China through sport – something that Victoria is well-known for and has amazing capabilities in.”
“Victoria is the sporting capital of Australia, not only because we host world famous events like the Australian Open tennis and the Formula One Grand Prix, but also because we are home to companies like Catapult and POD Active, which are revolutionising sport.”