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ACBW – Pathway to China Forum

31 July 2019 RACV City Club Melbourne



2.20 – 2.30 PM

David Thomas

Opening Address – China Bites

In a volatile and uncertain world, only two predictions can be made with any confidence. Firstly, China’s economy will double in size in the next 10 years and, secondly, China’s middle class will double from 300m to at least 600m people by 2030. These two facts alone place China firmly in the driving seat of global growth in the next decade, an opportunity for investors, entrepreneurs and business leaders which can’t be ignored.


With unprecedented economic growth over the past decade, the extraordinary rise of China is well underway. Chinese influence on how business gets done will continue to disrupt many industries, and the next decade will be pivotal to all western organisations seeking new opportunities for growth. China represents a unique opportunity to the rest of the world driving wealth and prosperity across the globe, and simply cannot be ignored. How will you and your organisation embrace a view to China?

David Thomas, Chair ACBW Forum – CEO Think Global

2.30 – 2.50 PM

Peter Nathan

A2 Journey in China

A2 Milk is now ranked in the top five Australia-New Zealand corporations, who have had great success and impact on the China market. Peter Nathan has driven the China road as CEO of A2 Asia Pacific in this $8 billion dollar company.

Peter Nathan, CEO Asia Pacific A2 Milk – Keynote

2.50 – 3.15 PM

China Inbound Opportunity

The movement of capital, people and resources from “inside this circle to outside it” is one of the most confronting and exciting opportunities, challenges and risks of the 21st century and will have an impact on every aspect of our lives.


In the long term, this movement creates unprecedented challenges for politicians, economists, historians and sociologists who will all have to grapple with the impact of a new aspirant middle class disrupting the old world order and exporting their cultures, wealth and ambition to other countries. We’re already seeing some early signs of what lies ahead.


In the short term, smart businesses and entrepreneurs with a will to adapt and prosper will find countless opportunities to benefit from this wave of cashed up consumers, aspirational families, hard-working millennials and savvy investors if they take the plunge and open their minds.

David Thomas, Chair ACBW Forum

3.15 – 3.35 PM

Victorian Government Commitment to the China Relationship

From the recent One Belt One Road MOU to Victoria’s position as the major trade & business destination in Australia with China


3.35 – 4.05 PM

Panel Discussion – Building Relationship in China


Ben Sun, Co-Founder CEO Think China
Dr. Irene Deng, International Business RMIT University

Steven Foo, MD Foo Consulting

4.05 – 4.20 PM

Afternoon Tea

4.20 – 4.40 PM

Case Study – China Journey a SME Perspective

4.40 – 5.05 PM

Ben Sun

The Power and Growth of China Digital

Ben Sun, Co-Founder CEO Think China

5.05 – 5.30 PM

David Thomas

Wrap Up – Q&A

David Thomas recaps on the Forum’s key points with Q&A

How SMEs can delve into Australia’s largest export market

China is our largest trading partner, largest export market and greatest source of import, but there is still a lot the Australian business community could do better when it comes to our relationship with China.


China is also Australia’s largest market for trade in service, and the largest source of tourism and inbounded education revenue.


China needs secure sources of high-quality food and reliable supplies of minerals and fuels for its industries. To capitalise on this opportunity, Australia must increase access to the Chinese market for Australian businesses in agriculture, tourism, education, financial services and manufacturing.


Pathways to China Forum is a chance for Australian industries to share insights into the latest opportunities for Australian companies to expand further or enter China.


Now in its eleventh year the program presented: Wednesday 31st July RACV City Club is an excellent opportunity to develop and refine your China strategy.


Delegates will hear from China experts on the current trading and engagement with China, and the impact and opportunities for Australian SMEs.


Pathways to China Forum will bring together speakers from China, ASEAN and Australia to deliver up-to-date insights on the key issues for China-active Australian SMEs.


For delegates the Forum focuses on how Australian SMEs can position and develop brands to China. Key themes include current trends and export opportunities, Australian industry case studies, challenges, evaluation and analysis and the transformation of Australian business through technology and innovation.


Early-stage China-active SMEs will hear dynamic presentations by China specialists in key areas such as market entry strategy, marketing, bridging the language gap and inter-cultural effectiveness.


Pathways to China Forum delegates can look forward to keynotes, panel discussions and case studies by Australia-China thought leaders.


Pathways to China Forum will be presented following the Australia-China Business Leaders Luncheon which is included in the Delegate Registration.


David Thomas

CEO – Think Global
Consulting Chair ACSME


China Business and Keynote Speaker, Thought Leader and Business Futurist, David Thomas is well known throughout the Asia Pacific for his experience, credibility and deep understanding of China and Asia. In essence, David is a bridge-builder providing a solid foundation for the west to do business with China in the Asia Pacific and all over the world. Over the past 15 years, David has led and organised many delegations to China which, in addition to enhancing his reputation and standing within the region, have provided him with a unique opportunity to stay ahead of the trends that are redefining business between China and the rest of the world. This experience further solidifies David’s credibility and mastery as China expert speaker for business leaders, entrepreneurs and investors looking for success in a new and abundant marketplace.