FOR the first time the Chinese Consul General to WA Huang Qinguo plans to travel to the Ord-East Kimberley Development Project next week.
The Chinese company Shanghai Zhongfu, which trades in Australia as the Kimberley Agricultural Investment (KAI), leases the irrigated farmland under the Ord-East Kimberley Expansion Project and has recently been visited by officials, including Governor-General Sir Peter Cosgrove and Chinese representatives.
A three-day tour by the Chinese Consul General will cover the entire Kununurra-based project and include discussions with KAI chief executive officer Yin Jian-Zhong.
KAI general manager Jim Engelke said they are looking forward to the upcoming visit to the Ord.
"From KAI's perspective we are very pleased the Consul General is taking an interest in our project," Mr Engelke said.
"We are looking forward to introducing the Consul General to the East Kimberley and our project."
The Kununurra tour will be the first, but not the last, for Dr Huang.
A consulate spokesperson said he wanted to see all the agricultural projects within WA, including the Ord project.
"It's the first time we will visit the Ord," a spokesperson said.
"The main purpose of the trip is to learn more about the projects and the region.
"This time we will only be visiting the Ord, and we may have the opportunity to visit the region again with the Australia-China Business Council WA (ACBC WA)."
The Ord River Irrigation Area Stage two involves the development of irrigated farmland, mostly for growing sugar cane, the development of a sugar mill and storage facilities at the port of Wyndham.
The project has about 14,000 hectares of irrigated farmland already developed.
The Kimberley Ord stage two clearing work is still in progress, with about 4600ha of land to clear this year, compared to 2000ha cleared last year - for the Goomig Plains development.
KAI plans to grow the sorghum for its syrup, which is used as a base for beverages.
A sorghum trial, conducted by the Department of Agriculture and Food WA in conjunction with KAI, has been expanded to cover 3ha, from last year's trial on almost 1 ha.
This trip to the Ord is not part of Dr Huang's tours with the ACBC WA, he has been touring the State and recently returned from the Mid-West region.
The Pilbara, SouthWest, Kimberley and Mid West regional tours were designed by ACBC WA to help the recently appointed Dr Huang familiarise himself with opportunities to further trade and investment between China and the four key regions in WA.
The tour began last month and focused on seeing the State's developments and speaking with those involved.
The Mid West region tour included a visit to the Durack Institute of Technology in Geraldton, the Batavia Coast Maritime Institute, a Mandarin language and cultural class at Geraldton Grammar School, an inspection of the fishermen's co-op processing facility, meetings with the ACBC WA's Mid West Regional Committee, the Mid West Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Chamber of Commerce and Industry WA, a fly-over tour of the proposed Oakajee Port project and a tour of Geraldton Port.
The ACBC WA tours will continue into the Kimberley, South West and Pilbara regions from August until November.