USCBC Chair Andrew Liveris, chairman and CEO of the Dow Chemical Co., and USCBC President John Frisbie led a delegation of 12 USCBC board members to Beijing at the end of October. The delegation met with Vice Premier Wang Qishan, People’s Bank of China Governor Zhou Xiaochuan, and other senior officials from the National Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the China Council for the Promotion of International Trade (CCPIT). The meetings focused on the global financial and economic outlook, bilateral commercial relationship following the US elections, and concerns of US firms operating in China.
Apart from the government meetings, the delegation hosted a reception on October 29 to mark the 35th anniversary of the establishment of USCBC. The reception was attended by about 200 guests, including PRC government officials, customers and partners of the delegation companies, and USCBC member company executives. Liveris and CCPIT Chair Wan Jifei delivered remarks.
USCBC Hosts China Operations Conference in Shanghai
Following a successful conference in Beijing earlier this year, USCBC held its second China Operations Conference of 2008 in Shanghai on November 13. The event addressed several issues important to leaders of US businesses in China, including the US election, PRC regulatory developments, rising costs, and corporate social responsibility (CSR).
The conference’s keynote speaker Zhao Xiaoping, deputy director of China’s new National Energy Administration, opened the conference by outlining China’s macro-energy policy. Goldman Sachs Chief China Economist Hong Liang spoke on China’s economic prospects. The conference also covered major political developments, with speakers on US and Chinese perspectives on the recent US elections.
In addition, panelists addressed emerging regulatory issues including high and new- tech enterprise preferential tax status approval, the Ministry of Commerce mergers and acquisitions filing process and related Antimonopoly Law considerations, and strategies for engaging China’s numerous industrial standards-setting bodies. The impacts of rising costs in the Asia-Pacific region were analyzed from property, human resources, and supply chain perspectives, as were strategies for dealing with labor disputes in the PRC and recent developments in China’s increasingly active labor unions.
CSR also received attention during the conference, with presentations from leading environmentalist Ma Jun, director of the Chinese nongovernmental organization (NGO) Institute of Public and Environmental Affairs, and Albert Tsang, China CEO of the US-based NGO Habitat for Humanity International, which is leading major projects related to the May 12 Sichuan earthquake rebuilding efforts.
USCBC Members Sponsor CereCare Wellness Center Shanghai
Contributions from USCBC member companies who attended Gala 2007 allowed USCBC to donate $15,000 to the Shanghai-based charitable organization CereCare Wellness Center in late 2007. The funds were primarily used to construct a new playground for CereCare’s students. In November 2008, the center held a ceremony celebrating its fifth anniversary. During the ceremony, the center commemorated USCBC’s donation and opened the refurbished playground.
CereCare Wellness Center is a residential facility that offers therapy and education to young children who suffer from cerebral palsy. Its mission is to help children with cerebral palsy to live productive and independent lives. CereCare’s founder is a Shanghainese woman named Lu Shunling, who herself has cerebral palsy. More information about CereCare may be found at www.cerecare.net.