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Sydney is Australia's gateway to Asia and the destination of choice for international corporations, business leaders, tourists and students.

Global Sydney

Strengthening ties with China

The Sydney-Guangzhou sister city relationship is one of the City’s most important and enduring partnerships. Founded on 12 May 1986 this partnership is mutually beneficial across civic, cultural, social, economic and trade relations.

Guangzhou is southern China’s largest city, China’s third largest city and a major transportation hub and trading port, making Sydney a natural partner. Both are economically dynamic port cities and financial centres with thriving service and innovation sectors.

Over the past 30 years there have been many successful visits between the 2 cities, furthering our economic and cultural relations. In May 2014, a memorandum of understanding was signed by Lord Mayor Clover Moore and former Mayor of Guangzhou Chen Jianhua, further strengthening ties and collaboration on education, trade, culture, business and sustainability.

NSW is also a sister state to Guangdong Province. Signed in 1979, the NSW-Guangdong relationship is underpinned by yearly meetings promoting economic collaboration between the 2 thriving economies. As Australia-China relations grow from strength to strength, Sydney and Guangzhou work collaboratively with their province or state to further relations.

Within the City of Sydney 7.5% of residents were born in China while over 13% have Chinese ancestry. The last census found that more than 14% of new international migrants to the city came from China.

The City of Guangzhou and Guangdong Province gifted the Chinese Garden of Friendship at Darling Harbour to the city for Australia’s bicentennial celebrations in 1988. It endures as a symbol of a longstanding history and prosperous future.

30th anniversary celebrations

A City of Sydney delegation with 100 representatives from local businesses, universities and cultural institutions travelled to Guangzhou in southern China for a 3-day program of events from 30 May to 1 June 2016.

Headed by Lord Mayor Clover Moore, it was the first time the City has led an overseas delegation.

The program included:

  • A performance by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, which also conducted a musical workshop with students from the Xinghai Conservatory of Music.
  • The University of Sydney, the University of New South Wales and the University of Technology Sydney delivered a 1-day sustainability symposium.
  • Sydney’s 6 leading universities combined to host a special alumni reception – the first Australian alumni event to take place in Guangzhou.
  • The Australia China Business Council presented a business conference, hosting around 100 attendees from both cities.
  • Sydney’s 4A Centre for Contemporary Asian Art and Guangzhou’s Observation Society presented an art work by Australian artist Lucas Ihlein and Chinese artist Trevor Yeung that will also be exhibited in Sydney. 

The City’s visit to Guangzhou followed a 2-day visit of 97 delegates from Guangzhou led by Vice Mayor Mr Wang Dong in May 2016 – the largest delegation to visit Sydney from Guangzhou.

The visit saw the signing of business and library memorandums of understanding between the 2 cities, a business networking event, photo exhibition and a Guangzhou variety performance.

Celebrating 30 years of the Sydney Guangzhou sister city relationship. City of Sydney 2030. Guangzhou China. Principal partner: Westpac

Last updated: Tuesday, 15 November 2016