On the evening of September 27, 2018, a grand reception celebrating the 69th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China was held at the brightly-lit Landmark London. H.E. Ambassador Liu Xiaoming and Madam Hu Pinghuan hosted about 500 people at the event, including the Rt Hon. Brandon Lewis MP, Minister without Portfolio and Chairman of the Conservative Party, SUN Yu, Chairman of the China Chamber of Commerce in the UK (CCCUK); and representatives from British government, parliament, industry and business, science and education, culture and media sectors, members of the CCCUK as well as the members of London diplomatic corps,
Picture 1: Speech of H.E. Ambassador LIU Xiaoming
At the reception, Ambassador Liu delivered a warm speech.. He said that In the 69 years since its founding, New China has not only created a “Chinese miracle”, but has now become a stabiliser and powerhouse of the world economy. President XI Jinping’s visit to the UK in 2015 ushered in a “golden era” of China-UK cooperation that has brought tangible benefits to the people of both countries. The “China-UK Golden Fruits of the Golden Era”exhibition showcases the achievements of Chinese enterprises investing in the UK and provides the best opportunities for mutually beneficial cooperation in this “Golden Era” of China-UK relations. China and the UK are both at a critical stage of development. There is huge potential for further cooperation across the board between our two countries. To tap this potential, we need to match China’s policy of deeper reform and further opening up with the UK’s effort of building a “Global Britain”. China and the UK have every reason to keep up the momentum of the steady and sustained development of the China-UK “Golden Era”.
He pointed out that the two countries should uphold three principles. The first principle is mutual respect and trust, which is important in building the “Golden Era”. The two countries should respect each other’s core interests, major concern, national sovereignty and territorial integrity and never harm each other’s core interests or undermine their strategic trust. The second one is mutual benefit, which is important in gathering new impetus for common development. China and the UK should match their development strategies to deepen high-standard and high-quality cooperation on the Belt and Road Initiative to help translate their complementary advantages and development opportunities into concrete outcomes. The third one is following the trend of the times, which is important in contributing positive energy to international cooperation. In today’s world, unilateralism, protectionism and populism are surging and international economy and trade face severe challenges. China and the UK must join hands to safeguard the rule-based multilateral trade regime and make greater contribution to world peace and development. In closing, Ambassador Liu said, “China will continue to strive for national development and rejuvenation through reform and opening up. Meanwhile, China stands ready to work with the rest of the world, including the UK, to build a new type of international relations and a community with a shared future for mankind. Together, we can create a better future for the planet!”
Picture 2: Speech of Rt Hon. Brandon Lewis MP, Minister without Portfolio and Chairman of the Conservative Party
Rt Hon. Brandon Lewis MP, Minister without Portfolio and Chairman of the Conservative Party, gave a speech at the Reception. He began his speech by saying how honoured he was to attend the 2018 National Day Reception and mentioned that the UK’s post-Brexit commitment to build a “Global Britain” provides an opportunity for further development of bilateral relations between China and the UK. In the “Golden Era” of China-UK relations, the two countries have achieved remarkable results on cooperation in various fields in recent years, and China will be one of the largest investors of the UK by 2020. As one of the most open markets and the best investment destinations in the world, the UK is at the forefront of global financial innovation, while China is the fastest growing market. The two countries have broad prospects for cooperation. In the future, the UK is willing to strengthen cooperation with China in the areas of capital market connectivity, RMB internalization, trade and investment, and continue to cooperate closely on global and regional issues such as health, security, education, tourism, sports and climate change so as to contribute to world peace, stability and prosperity. In closing, he looked forward to a brighter future for cooperation of all sectors between China and the UK.
Picture 3: SUN Yu, Chairman of the CCCUK, Introducing the Fruitful Results of China-UK Cooperation
China’s economic strength and the influence of Chinese enterprises in the UK continue to expand as China-UK relations enter a “golden era”. At the reception, the CCCUK held the first China-UK Trade and Business Cooperation Exhibition- China-UK Golden Fruits of the Golden Era. Through vivid explanations of pictures and items, SUN Yu, Chairman of the CCCUK, elaborated the main achievements of Chinese enterprises in the UK in the four areas of finance, technology & manufacturing, energy & infrastructure and & social responsibility, demonstrating the quality brand image and development highlights of Chinese enterprises in the UK.
In the area of finance, with China-UK relations entering the “Golden Era”, Chinese financial institutions have become one of the most active forces in the City of London by combining localisation and internationalisation, promoting actively the development of an offshore RMB centre in London while providing quality and efficient financial services. Since Bank of China establishmented its the first overseas branch in London, , seven Chinese banks have set up branches in London. London has become the second largest RMB offshore market next to Hong Kong, with daily trading volume is over £60 billion. The Ministry of Finance of China, Agricultural Bank of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and China Development Bank have issued RMB sovereign bonds, green bonds and foreign exchange bonds in London, and 35 Chinese companies are listed on the London Stock Exchange.
In the area of technology and manufacturing, The UK’s advanced technology and innovation capabilities have attracted many Chinese companies to invest here. For example, HUAWEI has established research centers in Bristol, Cambridge and Ipswich, and ZTE has launched its first overseas joint innovation centre in London. BYD electric buses have been operating in London since December 2013, and GEELY’s factory in Coventry was officially put into operation in 2017, producing renewable energy vehicles for the European market. In the areas of energy & infrastructure, , Chinese companies have been increasingly investing in areas of British infrastructure. Examples of this include CGN’s investment in Hinkley Point C Project, China National Petroleum Corporation’s Grangemouth Refinery project in Scotland, AVIC International Holding Corporation’s Solar photovoltaic power station project and Beijing Construction Engineering Group’s Manchester Airport project. In April 2017, the Yiwu-London China Railway Express completed its pilot journey which was the first overland Sino-British trade rail transportation ever, marking the extension of the Belt and Road to the westernmost point of Europe.
In the area of social responsibility, Chinese-invested organisations have actively integrated into mainstream British society in recent years, taking the initiative to take social responsibility and making many contributions to the local community while achieving economic benefits. By the end of 2017, China’s accumulated non-financial direct investment in the UK amounted to US$19.14 billion. In 2017 alone, Chinese direct-invested enterprises paid $260 million in taxes in the UK and created tens of thousands of local employment opportunities. : Huawei has been a member of the Prince’s Trust since 2007. Bank of China has participated in City Giving Day for four consecutive years in the city of London. Over the past two years, China Taiping Insurance Group has sponsored British orchestras to visit China to promote cultural exchanges between the two countries.
Picture 4: At the National Day Reception
During the evening, guests praised the opportunities presented by the in-depth development of China-UK relations in recent years and said they looked forward to more “golden fruits” from China-UK cooperation. Afterwards, guests also attended the “Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention” and the “Belt and Road Photo Exhibition” at the reception, and tasted regional cuisines from across China.