Bendigo councillors will consider a recommendation that they endorse a proposed visit to China next month by mayor Margaret O’Rourke and fellow councillor James Williams at Wednesday night’s regular council meeting.
The City of Greater Bendigo said in a statement the mayor would use the mooted trip to promote the city’s “strong, diverse and innovative local economy”.
The opportunities for Bendigo are endless on an international scale.Jayson Tayeh
The statement said Cr O’Rourke’s travel expenses would come at a total cost of $3014, which would be accommodated within the current budget, while Cr Williams would pay his own way.
If given the green light, the councillors would travel with a delegation of central Victorian business and community leaders and meet with key dignitaries, and explore cities and activities in China, “so they can learn about the best ways to engage with China’s business community, aim to secure trade opportunities and build greater cultural understanding”.
Bendigo Business Council engagement manager Jayson Tayeh said the delegation to China would “identify key opportunities in education and health education export from Bendigo”.
“We aim to build awareness of the breadth and diversity of goods and services currently exported from central and north-western Victoria to Asian markets and to generate a sense of excitement and curiosity among our local entrepreneurs – the opportunities for Bendigo are endless on an international scale,” he said.
Mr Tayeh said the BBC would also seek to further advance Bendigo’s Smart Cities bid with the federal government by learning and exploring other key smart city destinations, in Beijing and Nanjing.
“The BBC seeks to translate the existing goodwill developed by the sister city connections into trade outcomes for the Bendigo region,” he said.
“For Bendigo to be positioned as the most liveable regional city in Australia, Bendigo must be trade ready.”
Cr O’Rourke was unavailable for comment on Monday.