In the last forty years, the population of Chinese migrants and Chinese Australians settling in Queensland has increased substantially. During the same time, over forty community associations and organisations have been formed within different sectors of the Chinese community looking after the interests and welfare of their members.

In spite of their varied objectives and activities, the majority of the Chinese community associations support the idea that there should be a body representing the Chinese community when important issues affecting the whole community arise and need to be addressed. Resources and energy can also be pooled and channelled effectively for activities and initiatives benefiting all members of the Chinese community.

The Council of Chinese Organisations of Queensland was first proposed in 1984 by several Chinese ethnic community leaders and an interim committee was set up as the preparatory group. This was in response to a nation-wide controversy on Asian immigration during the Hawke Labor Government.

The Council was renamed the Liaison Committee of Chinese Organisations of Queensland in 1987; and later as the Queensland Chinese Forum (the Forum, QCF) when it was formally constituted in 1994 with seven member associations (Cathay Community Association, Chinese Business and Professional Association Qld, Chinese Ethnic Broadcasting Association of Qld, Chinese Fraternity Association of Qld, Hong Kong Business & Professional Association of Qld, Qld Chinese Food and Beverage Hospitality Association, Taiwan Friendship Association Qld, and was incorporated in January 1995.