Australian Writers' Week,  A Very Large Aquarium Window,  International Women's Day & More
Edition 24, March 4, 2015
Ma La Koala - Newsletter of the Australian Consulate-General in Chengdu


Australian Writers' Week at the Bookworm 

The eighth annual Australian Writers Week will soon kick off with a number of Chengdu events as part of the Bookworm Literary Festival. This year in Chengdu we have a beat poet, a teenage fiction writer and an adventure travel writer who will come together to give us a taste of the unique and diverse voices in contemporary Australian writing.  On March 20th nomadic artist Zohab Zee Khan will give a lively performance of beat poetry. Winner of the Australian Slam Poetry competition in 2014, Khan is Australia’s leading advocate of guerrilla poetry - the writing and performing poetry in unconventional ways.

On March 21st author, teacher and public speaker AJ Betts will discuss her third novel for young adults, Zac & Mia.  The text was inspired by her work teaching at a hospital in her hometown of Perth. Zac & Mia was winner of the 2014 Ethel Turner Prize. On March 23rd award-winning Australian adventurer and filmmaker Tim Cope will discuss his book and documentary, On the Trail of Genghis Khan: An Epic Journey through the Lands of the Nomads. Cope will hold a separate travel writing master class at the bookworm on March 22nd where he will discuss the art of travel journaling.  View the full program here.

Forging stronger ties – Australia and Chongqing

From the highest levels of government right down to the grass roots, Australians and Chongqingers are becoming the best of friends.  Chongqing Mayor Huang Qifan visited Australia with President Xi Jingping in November last year, capping off a year where the number of visitors from Chongqing to Australia doubled. Following up on Mayor Huang’s visit, Australian Ambassador Frances Adamson called on Chongqing Party Secretary Sun Zhengcai in early February to discuss how we could build on our already healthy friendship.  The two leaders discussed practical ways to bring the benefits of the newly finalised China-Australia Free Trade Agreement to people of both countries.

Landlubbers see the Sea  

Spring Festival saw the launch of southwest China’s new “Cube Oceanarium” designed by Australian company Advanced Aquarium Technologies. The 10,000,000 litre exhibition tank has a 40 metre by 8 metre aquarium window which looks over shoppers at Chengdu’s “Seaside City” shopping mall. Huge crowds from landlocked Sichuan enjoyed the more than 10,000 different marine species on display over the Chinese New Year (pictured).

The aquarium window has been recognised by the Guinness Book of World Records as both the largest acrylic window and the largest aquarium window in the world.   Advanced Aquarium Technologies designed, built, and installed the aquarium, including the massive acrylic viewing panels and specialist lighting. Learn more

Chinese New Year Brings Tourists to Tassie

Xi Jinping has left a distinct legacy in Tasmania: tourists. The number of Chinese visitors to the apple isle is set to exceed last year’s record tally of 35,000. Destination Southern Tasmania chief executive Melinda Anderson told the Hobart Mercury that she expected 2015 would be Tasmania’s busiest year yet, adding that China was now Tasmania’s number one international market. Xi Jinping visited Tasmania as part of his state visit to Australia in November 2014. (Pictured: Aussie Expat Chris Lethbridge catches up with some Chinese Holidaymakers in Tasmania).

Celebrating Twenty Years of Action: International Women’s Day 2015

International Women’s Day is observed annually on March 8th to commemorate the economic, political and social achievements of women. This year, Australian Ambassador Frances Adamson will visit Chengdu to talk to students at Sichuan University about the contribution of women to the Australia China relationship, and to meet women who have contributed to the Sichuan-Australia relationship.

International Women’s Day 2015 will also celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action and the tremendous progress that has been made.  Twenty years ago, at the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, the nations of the world promised to remove all obstacles to gender equality and the empowerment of women. This promise was made through the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action – a visionary roadmap for advancing women’s rights and equality between men and women.  Learn more

Chongqing Community Corner

Chongqing’s Australian community met recently at the InterContinental Chonqging to enjoy Aussie Pavlova and a few drinks. Are you an Aussie in Chonqging?
drop us a line
Upcoming Events

March 8
International Women’s Day

March 20
Zohan Zee Khan Performance at the
Bookworm Chengdu, 9pm

March 21
AJ Betts discusses Zac and Mia at the
Bookworm Chengdu,  11am

March 22
Tim Cope leads a Travel Writing Workshop at the
Bookworm Chengdu,  2pm

March 23
"Riding Alone Thousands of Miles": a sideshow and talk by Tim Cope at the
Bookworm Chengdu, 7:30pm

March 27
Aussie Bar Night, The Keg King, 2F Raffles City, No. 3, Section 4, South Remin Road, Wuhou District, Chengdu 6:30pm

March 29
International Cricket Cup 2015 Final (Melbourne)

April 11  
Southwest China AFL round robin (Chengdu)
小吃   Little Bites

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