Dan confirms surprise China trip

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Daniel Andrews is set to visit China for the first time since his government’s controversial infrastructure deal with Beijing was torn up.

The four-day visit, slated for this week, will involve the Victorian Premier meeting with senior officials from the Ministry of Education and Beijing Government.

He is expected to discuss trade and cultural ties, and the return of Chinese students to Victoria after pandemic-induced border closures.

It will mark the first visit by a state leader since the pandemic began.

The Premier will also travel to Jiangsu and Sichuan to meet with key senior officials from Victoria’s sister states.

He told reporters on Sunday the trip is “all about the future” and slapped down suggestions the announcement was purposely not revealed with advanced notice.

“We don’t we don’t have plans that are finalised a week ago or a month ago,” Mr Andrews said.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will visit China this week. Picture: Twitter: Lisa TuckerVictorian Premier Daniel Andrews will visit China this week. Picture: Twitter: Lisa Tucker

“You’ve got you do the planning and then you make an announcement when it is appropriate to do so.”

There are 42,000 Chinese students are currently enrolled with Victorian providers across the state.

The trip will be Mr Andrews seventh to China since becoming Premier with previous visits held in 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and two in 2019.

During his last visit in October 2019, the Victorian premier signed a framework agreement with China’s controversial Belt and Road initiative.

It was later made null and void by the Morrison government under new laws that allowed the Commonwealth to cancel deals between states and foreign powers.

Western Australia’s Premier Mark McGowan earlier this month confirmed plans to visit Beijing in late April to discuss trade relations.

He is also slated visit Guangzhou to address the resumption of direct flights between Perth and the port city powerhouse.

Western Australia exported $136 billion worth of goods to China in the 2022 financial year

Foreign Minister Penny Wong travelled to China in December which marked the first visit by a federal government minister since 2019.

Read related topics:China

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