Chinese language week celebrated

  • Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga
Ethnic Communities

Ethnic Communities Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has welcomed Chinese Language week, which starts today.

“China is one of New Zealand’s largest trading partners.  Our trade relationship with China has nearly tripled over the past decade to $23 million in the June 2016 year,” Mr Lotu-Iiga says.

“In order to build relationships with trading partners it is important that we better understand the culture and language. It is also important when you are trying to build social and political ties.”

“More New Zealanders should learn Mandarin or Cantonese so they can be part of the increasingly important Asian markets we trade with.”

“More than 172,000 ethnic Chinese now call New Zealand home.  It is crucial that we therefore celebrate the successes and achievements of Chinese New Zealanders from the first migrant gold miners to our most recent arrivals.”

“When you learn the basics of another language you start to build a relationship with that culture.  Chinese Language Week is held to encourage more New Zealanders to have a go at speaking Mandarin or Cantonese.”

New Zealand Chinese Language Week runs until Sunday 18 September.

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