Latest News

Back to Latest News back


Australian Government announces three-year backing for AFL’s annual fixture in China

Australian Government announces three-year backing for AFL’s annual fixture in China
April 1, 2019

The AFL premiership season match in China, first played in 2017, will now form part of a broader promotion of Australia in China.

Federal Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Simon Birmingham, today announced a three-year commitment to the AFL game in China, which in 2019 will form part of a new ‘Festival of Australia' promotion

A program of activity across 10 cities in China that will run from 20th May to 2nd June, the ‘Festival of Australia’ will highlight Australia’s premium food and wine, aged care, innovation, education, investment, culture, tourism and sport.

It will culminates in the AFL match between Port Adelaide and St Kilda at Shanghai's Jiangwan Stadium on 2nd June 2019.

Announcing the backing, Minister Birmingham stated “China and Australia have deep commercial and cultural ties, built over many years, but there is significant opportunity to grow exports of quality Australian products and services to the world’s biggest consumer market.

“As well as promoting premium Australian food and beverages, the Festival will highlight Australia’s capability in healthcare, culture, tourism, sports, education, financial services, business and innovation spheres.”

Minister Birmingham claimed "this is a new model of engagement between Australia and China, which transcends trade, tourism, investment as well as sport and culture, to promote Australia in China and enhance interactions between the peoples of both countries."

The AFL and Port Adelaide Football Club, which have a joint venture to organise the annual AFL match in China, welcome the decision.

Port Adelaide Chairman David Koch stated "today’s announcement is an incredible vote of confidence for what Port Adelaide is doing in China.

“When we first played an official game in China in 2017, people were pleasantly surprised at what had been achieved.

“Now, the annual match which is to a large extent the product of Port Adelaide’s vision and excellence is the anchor of a significant event for Australia in China.

“I encourage all businesses with a focus on China, and all footy supporters, to be there.

“With the announcement of this Festival of Australia, all roads lead to Shanghai; I can’t wait.”

AFL Chief Executive, Gillan McLachlan also welcomed the backing, stating "on behalf of the AFL, we thank the Government for their three-year commitment to support the Festival of Australia in China.

“This support will ensure our game becomes a marquee event in the Australia-China business calendar.

“Today’s announcement and the Government’s commitment certifies the momentum built on the first two Shanghai matches extends into the future both on and off the field in China.”

Related Articles

22nd March 2019 - Trade mission launched to showcase Victorian Sports Industry

8th March 2019 - AFL growth initiatives result in profit increase

15th February 2019 - News report suggests few Chinese sports venues are profitable

29th October 2018 - AFL makes ongoing commitment to Shanghai fixture

19th May 2018 - Victorian Government wants Melbourne club in future AFL fixtures in China

16th May 2018 - AFL Shanghai fixture part of wider sporting diplomacy

13th March 2018 - Hawthorn President Jeff Kennett slams AFL’s international expansion plans

12th January 2018 - Shanghai Municipality to build eight new professional sports stadia by 2035

4th June 2017 - Abel Sports supply goalposts for AFL’s Shanghai adventure

12th May 2017 - AFL secures last-minute Chinese broadcast deal for Shanghai game

27th October 2016 - AFL 2017 season to feature competitive match in Shanghai

Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.


supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

Supreme Heating

Supreme Heating is a proud Australian owned company specialising in the latest energy efficient heating solutions. Since 1990, Supreme Heating has designed and installed commercial pool heating…

read more

Aquatics / Environment / Recreation



Recreation Management Software for managing all your program registrations, facility bookings, membership pass sales and Point of Sale; including detailed reporting, automated customer communication…

read more

Access / Billing / Finance / Marketing / Technology


XBODY Australia Pty Ltd

PROVEN BUSINESS CONCEPTS WITH XBODY XBody’s goal is to see you and your EMS business succeed. That is why we don’t just sell equipment, we provide know-how, expert knowledge,…

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness



Myzone is the industry’s leading wearable technology solution. Myzone’s wearable products show and reward effort when you work out. It displays accurate real-time heart rate, calories, and…

read more

Fitness / Sport / Technology / Wellness


Anti Wave International

Anti Wave International is the original suppliers of top performance swim, aquatic sports, leisure and pool programming equipment. Founded in 1971, Anti Wave International is proud of its…

read more

Aquatics / Play / Sport



As of 2018, TicketServ operates as SeatGeek Asia Pacific Pty Limited, part of international ticketing platform SeatGeek. Click here to contact SeatGeek Asia Pacific via their entry in…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Events / Sport / Ticketing



Leisure Concepts brings the world’s leading fitness equipment brands to Australasia - these include True Fitness, Atlantis Strength, Merrithew (Stott Pilates), Intenza Fitness,…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Technology / Wellness



The Fitness Generation is now part of NovoFit - see

read more

Fitness / Technology / Wellness


get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business