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Event aims to build bridge to China’s 240 million seniors

A first-of-its-kind forum aims to connect Australian and Chinese aged care stakeholders to facilitate improved business opportunities between the two countries.

Next month’s Australia–China Aged Care Industry Development Forum in Sydney will bring Chinese aged care experts, investors and business leaders to meet Australian providers, consultants and vendors.

The event is being hosted by CCIA Business Holdings, a Sydney-based company formed earlier this year by a group of business people experienced in trading and consulting in both China and in Australia.

CCIA Business Holdings managing director Ivy Lee said China was demanding mature aged care experience from overseas and the Chinese-Australia Free Trade Agreement provided an advantage for Australia’s aged care and hospital sectors.

Ivy Lee

“The China market is massive but it’s complicated. The right channel and platform can reduce risks for Australian aged care providers,” Ms Lee told Australian Ageing Agenda.

The forum aims to facilitate open and transparent communication between Australian and Chinese aged care stakeholders to help build the right resources to facilitate business between the two countries, she said.

“It will be an ongoing platform with a business vision to help Australian aged care providers connect with more and more Chinese projects in China.”

The Chinese government marked the aged care system as a priority sector earlier this year, and the biggest fund and development companies in China are now investing or preparing to invest in the sector, she said.

This along with the 240 million people aged over 60, China’s former single-child policy, the growth of the middle class and the increase of people in their 50s and 60s with money, make it the right time for Australian providers to start learning about the Chinese aged care market, Ms Lee said.

Cynthia Payne

Australian presenters include the CEO of NSW provider SummitCare, Cynthia Payne.

China, which has not focused on aged care policy at a national level until now, is interested in Australia’s world-class system, Ms Payne said.

“They are looking for leadership, capability and knowledge transfer,” Ms Payne told AAA.

She said this forum was an important opportunity to connect the visiting delegation with the right people in Australia.

“We won’t be able to help other providers engage in this if we don’t create the forums in which the dialogue can unfold,” she said.

As SummitCare is not interested in the Chinese market, Ms Payne, who is chair of the Leading Age Services Australia NSW/ACT member advisory group, said her role was as collaborator, networker and influencer.

Ms Payne will also offer the Chinese delegation insight into the Australian aged care sector at the forum and into SummitCare’s business model during a study tour to its new facility in Baulkham Hills.

“I come with an Australian context to share a provider’s insight as to how we are evolving our business model; what our new asset looks like; what our product mix looks like; and how we are working within where the Australian setting is evolving to.”

The forum will also look at the needs of the ageing Chinese population in Australia in a bid to unlock the opportunity of demand for new and high-end aged care facilities.

The Australia – China Aged Care Industry Development Forum 2017 takes place on 13 November at NSW Parliament House in Sydney.

Australian Ageing Agenda is a media partner for the event.

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