A major international conference, focused on migration settlement and cultural diversity, will be coming to Sydney in 2018 in a major coup for the NSW economy, Minister for Multiculturalism John Ajaka today announced.

As part of a three-day visit to Japan, Mr Ajaka announced the NSW Government, and its partners Settlement Services International and the Australian Multicultural Foundation, will host the 2018 International Metropolis Conference in Sydney at the new International Convention Centre between 29 October and 2 November 2018.

Mr Ajaka also delivered a keynote address at the conference, which highlighted NSW’s excellent record on migrant and refugee resettlement and the importance of cultural cohesion, briefed high-ranking government officials on disability reform, and was briefed on NSW’s trade position by Austrade.

“Across the world, countries are grappling with how best to deal with issues like migration and the movement of people. Here in NSW, we have hard-earned experience and expertise in this area. We have been successful in creating the most multicultural society on earth. It is only right that we shared these insights and contribute to the global debate,” Mr Ajaka said.

“The International Metropolis Conference will bring close to a 1,000 visitors from around the world to our shores, who will sleep in our hotels, eat in our world-class restaurants and spend their time in our great city.

“Importantly, as the first NSW Government Minister to meet with the newly-elected Tokyo Metropolitan Government, I reinforced just how important our relationship with Japan is.”

Executive Head of the Metropolis Project Dr Howard Duncan said “Australia is a founding member for Metropolis. The appeal of coming to the multicultural city of Sydney is very high. We hope this can enable the rest of the world to take lessons from Australia’s experiences in integrating migrant communities.”

Executive Director of the Australian Multicultural Foundation Dr Hass Dellal AO said “Sydney is a natural cosmopolitan home for such a great conference, and I am proud to be a co-host of Metropolis Sydney 2018.”

Chief Executive Officer of Settlement Services International Violet Roumeliotis said “As an organisation at the coalface, we value the opportunity to showcase the extraordinary diversity of Sydney’s local neighbourhoods to such a global audience via the Metropolis Conference.”

Chief Executive Officer of Multicultural NSW Hakan Harman said “Co-hosting Metropolis 2018 is a tremendous opportunity to showcase the world-class work of our agency in promoting social cohesion and best practice in migration and settlement services to the international community.”

The 2016 International Metropolis Conference brings together academics, public servants and the private sector to discuss the key issues in migration settlement and cultural diversity. This year’s theme was Creating Trust Through Wisdom on Migration and Integration.

Japan, the world’s third largest economy and NSW largest export market, has been identified as a priority country under the NSW Government’s International Engagement Strategy.