Chinese President invited to renew Tasmanian links Wed 12 December 2012 Lara Giddings Premier The newly appointed Chinese President Xi Jinping has been invited to visit Tasmania to rekindle his past relationship with the state. The Premier, Lara Giddings, said she had written to Mr Xi as part of the Tasmanian Government's efforts to engage with Asia. "Xi Jinping has an historical connection with Tasmania as a previous Governor of our Chinese sister state Fujian Province," Ms Giddings said. "Former Premier Jim Bacon was a regular visitor to Fujian and was bestowed with honorary citizenship by Mr Jinping during a ceremony to mark the 20th anniversary of the relationship in 2001. "I would very much welcome the opportunity to return the gesture if Mr Xi was to visit Tasmania." Ms Giddings today hosted a breakfast for the delegates who attended the recent Asian Trade Mission in September. The breakfast was appropriately held at the Mercure Hotel, which has introduced initiatives to cater for Asian tourists. "The Trade Mission was only the start of our efforts to more effectively engage with Asia and realise the immense economic opportunities on offer in the region. "The breakfast is an opportunity to hear about the progress that has been made in tapping into new markets and building new relationships following the mission. "I have also encouraged the participants to submit their ideas and comments to incorporate in the Asian White Paper, which will be released in the New Year." Ms Giddings said a lot had already been achieved out of the trade mission, including a resupply visit by a Chinese Antarctic vessel, obtaining approval to export Tasmanian cherries to China, the signing of a share sale agreement with Gouhua Energy for a majority stake in the Musselroe Wind Farm and strong investor interest in Tasmanian agriculture and mining projects. "Tasmania is perfectly poised to take advantage of the jobs and opportunities on offer in the Asian Century," Ms Giddings said.