The media have a key role to play in promoting understanding and friendship between China and Australia, a gathering of officials and representatives of mainstream outlets was told on Aug 25.
Cai Mingzhao, minister for China’s State Council Information Office, made the remark at the opening of the third China-Australia Media Forum in Sydney.
The event is co-hosted by China’s State Council Information Office and the Australian News Channel, and will focus on the media’s role in promoting relations between China and Australia.
Cai said the relationship between the countries is one of the most important in the Asia-Pacific region.
The media should continue to improve exchanges, strengthen cooperation in the field of emerging media such as the Internet, and actively support bilateral relations.
Ma Zhaoxu, China’s ambassador to Australia, said the level of communication and mutual understanding between China and Australia is unprecedented — but differences remain. Therefore the media should shoulder its responsibilities and promote bilateral relations.
Ma said he hopes the Chinese and Australian media will continue to play a constructive role in the process and provide a platform for a mature and informed public debate that truly reflects the countries.
Paul Fletcher, the parliamentary secretary to Australia’s minister for communications, said the forum provides a great opportunity to exchange and share views.
“The media play a more and more critical role in the growing bilateral relations,” he added.
“I hope the media from China and Australia work more closely in future to further promote Sino-Australian ties.”
Topics discussed included the role of media in bilateral relations, how to build media exchanges between Chinese and Australian media organizations, how new media models are affecting traditional media, and the impact of technology on journalism.
The event was first held in Sydney in 2006, and the second gathering took place in Guangzhou in 2012.