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  • CHINALUX 2017 Advisory Board Meeting
    CHINALUX 2017 Advisory Board Meeting

    The 2017 CHINALUX Advisory Board meeting took place on the 6th December 2017 at the Chamber of Commerce Luxembourg. 

    We wish to thank all of the Board Members for a very productive meeting and discussions on the CHINALUX 2018 strategy and plan. Thank you also to our Executive Board leaders for attending the meeting and presenting the latest updates and planning.

    We look forward to the start of 2018, and to implementing the suggestions and guidance of the CHINALUX Advisory Board.  

     

    Written on Friday, 08 December 2017 18:00 Read 74 times
  • An Ambitious Initiative for Generations to Come: Understanding the Width and Depth of China’s Belt & Road Initiative
    An Ambitious Initiative for Generations to Come: Understanding the Width and Depth of China’s Belt & Road Initiative


    On 10 November 2017, the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the China-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce (CHINALUX) held the fourth and final event in their co-hosted event series on China’s Belt & Road Initiative (BRI)*.  The BRI is an economic and foreign policy initiative, through which China endeavours to establish a network of intercontinental trade and infrastructure projects, with an aim to forge new economic corridors between China, Eurasia, and beyond. Entitled “What does China’s BRI mean for Luxembourg?”, the seminar focused on the opportunities for the finance sector in Luxembourg under the BRI, and emphasised the importance of grasping the ambition, width, and depth of the initiative.

     

    In his welcoming speech, Jeannot Erpelding, Director of International Affairs at the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, noted the on-going promotion of the BRI amongst the Luxembourg business community, and outlined the key China-Luxembourg government and business exchanges thus far in 2017. Most notably, he mentioned the visit to China by Xavier Bettel, Luxembourg Prime Minister, accompanied by Pierre Gramegna, Minister for Finance, and François Bausch, Minister of Sustainable Development and Infrastructure, in June this year on the occasion of the 45th anniversary of diplomatic relations between China and Luxembourg.

     

    Continuing the welcome remarks, Dirk Dewitte, CHINALUX, President, outlined the previous seminars of the event series, noting that it’s been a challenging task to define the BRI throughout the series, as it has continued to develop and increase in scope since its launch in 2013 by Chinese President Xi Jinping. He stated that despite any confusions on the definition and scope, what has been clear throughout the event series is the BRI is a very ambitious initiative.

     

    Next, Bo Ji, Assistant Dean of Global Executive Education & Chief Representative for Europe at Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB), delivered his presentation on the topic of the impact of the BRI to European financial sectors.** He reiterated Dirk Dewitte’s comment about the BRI’s definition, and argued the BRI could become the largest infrastructure project to date. Moreover, he discussed the importance of understanding one element of the BRI in particular, that is, “connectivity”, noting that the BRI currently involves over 65 countries, which account for 29% of global GDP. Additionally, the Chinese government anticipates its trade with the countries along the BRI routes will exceed US[103].5 trillion per year within the next decade.

     

    A second key message in Bo Ji’s presentation was understanding the importance of the BRI for the Chinese government, as highlighted at China’s 19th NPC National Congress last month. More specifically, the BRI is strategically important for the Chinese government from a geopolitical and global leadership perceptive. Bo Ji then presented his thoughts on Luxembourg’s role under the BRI, within the context of the potential impacts to Europe more generally, namely for commercial banks, private banks, the fund industry, and the stock exchange.

     

    Following Bo Ji’s presentation, Sascha Bremer, Luxembourg for Finance, Market Intelligence Advisor, led the panel discussion, and brought the views of senior representatives and industry players in the Luxembourg banking, fund, stock exchange, and FinTech sectors on the potential opportunities under the BRI to the forefront.

     

    Lyu Ke, Bank of China Luxembourg, Deputy Head of Corporate Banking & Director of Chinese Corporate and Acquisition Finance Division, noted the support of and for Chinese banking in Luxembourg within the context of BRI cooperation. Similarly, Yves Maas, Luxembourg Bankers' Association (ABBL), Chairman, noted that Luxembourg offers a complete ecosystem for financial services, and as such is the ideal hub for Chinese banks to enter the European market and beyond.

     

    Michael Pechner, Luxembourg Stock Exchange, Chief Commercial Officer, expressed that Luxembourg and the Luxembourg Stock Exchange can potentially boost BRI finance, for example, by offering access to investors, credibility, transparency and reliability. He noted that given the track-record of Luxembourg, for example in the supporting of the internationalisation of the RMB, it’s clear Luxembourg can play an important role for the BRI. Similarly, Camille Thommes, Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry (ALFI), Director General, noted that Luxembourg has been a front runner in supporting many initiatives. He also echoed Bo Ji’s reference to “connectivity”, stating that Luxembourg connects the world, and indeed has an interest to act as a connecting hub.

     

    Turning the focus to FinTech, Ning Wang, PingPong Europe, Co-CEO & PingPong Financial Group Companies, President, explored the importance of FinTech for the BRI, and called for Luxembourg to be the next Hangzhou. When asked whether he views Luxembourg, or his company and other companies in Luxembourg, as playing a role in the BRI, he responded, “yes, absolutely, that’s why I’m here.”

     

    Delivering a concluding speech, Pierre Gramegna, Minister for Finance, expressed that we are still not fully understanding the width and depth of the BRI. He presented the long-term approach for the BRI, and added that the logistics, ICT and finance sectors will be key to the success of the initiative. Most importantly, the Minister noted that the importance of the BRI for the Chinese government was illustrated when the initiative was written in the constitution of the Communist Party of China at the National Congress last month. The BRI is a “generational matter”, and is here stay for the long-term.

     

    The Minister also outlined that Luxembourg have a strong relationship with China, and a long-time friendship, noting his visits to China this year. He shared key insight into his engagement with the Chinese Finance Ministry, who have expressed they are eager to deepen cooperation in the implementation of the BRI, and that there will be continuing exchanges on the initiative. It was within this context that the Minister summarised that it is clear that Luxembourg will play an important role in the future success of the BRI, “not only for China and not only on the silk road, but also in Europe and in particular Luxembourg.”

     

    The seminar concluded with a networking lunch, bringing together the speakers and participants, and offering an opportunity to continue discussions in an informal setting.

     

    Press Articles:

    Press Articles:   Le Quotidien: La Voix d'un Développement Ambitieux

    Lëtzebuerger Journal: Une route, des ambitions 

    Luxembourg Wort: China's Belt and Road Initiative and Luxembourg's financial centre

     

    * Full Event Series: Throughout the course of the China's Belt & Road Initiative (BRI) Event Series (formerly referred to under the now less commonly used English translation of "One Belt One Road"), CHINALUX and the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg have endeavored to introduce and explore the opportunities for Luxembourg under the initiative, with events following the launch highlighting opportunities and experiences in the Luxembourg logistics, ICT and finance sectors.  

     

    **Presentation Slides: Please email Bo Ji to request a copy of the slides for his presentation “Impact of Belt & Road Initiative to European Financial Sectors”: boji2025(at)gmail.com 

     

    2017-11-10-OBOR-ChinaLux-PG-2 

    Jeannot Erpelding, Director of International Affairs at the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, delivers his welcome speech.

    Copyright: Chamber of Commerceof the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

     

    2017-11-10-OBOR-ChinaLux-PG-14

    Pierre Gramegna, Minister for Finance, delivers the concluding speech.

    Copyright: Chamber of Commerceof the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

     

    2017-11-10-OBOR-ChinaLux-PG-8

    Panel Discussion - left to right: Sascha Bremer, Luxembourg for Finance, Market Intelligence Advisor; Lyu Ke, Bank of China Luxembourg, Deputy Head of Corporate Banking & Director of Chinese Corporate and Acquisition Finance Division; Yves Maas, Luxembourg Bankers' Association (ABBL), Chairman; Ning Wang, PingPong Europe, Co-CEO & PingPong Financial Group Companies, President; Michael Pechner, Luxembourg Stock Exchange, Chief Commercial Officer; Camille Thommes, Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry (ALFI), Director General.

    Copyright: Chamber of Commerceof the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

     

    Bo Ji Minister Gramegna 

     

    Left to Right: Ms. Zhujun Xie, CHINALUX, Vice-President; Amanda Yeung, CHINALUX, Vice-President; Bo Ji, Assistant Dean of Global Executive Education & Chief Representative for Europe at Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB); Pierre Gramegna, Minister for Finance; Jeannot Erpelding, Director of International Affairs at the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg; Dirk Dewitte, CHINALUX, President.

    Copyright: Chamber of Commerceof the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg

     

     

     

     

    Written on Monday, 13 November 2017 00:00 Read 150 times
  • What does China’s Belt & Road Initiative mean for Luxembourg? - Q&A with Amanda Yeung

     

    This week we sat down with Amanda Yeung, China-Luxembourg Chamber of Commerce (CHINALUX) Vice President, to discuss the upcoming seminar “What does China’s Belt & Road Initiative mean for Luxembourg?” taking place on the 10th of November, 10:00-13:30, at the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The seminar will be the fourth, and final, event in the China’s Belt & Road Initiative Event Series.

     

    What is the Belt & Road Initiative?

    China’s Belt and Road Initiative (“BRI”; also formerly referred to as One Belt, One Road (“OBOR”)) is an ambitious economic and foreign policy initiative. Through the BRI, China endeavours to establish a network of intercontinental trade and infrastructure projects, with an aim to forge new economic corridors between China, Eurasia, and beyond.  

    Launched in September 2013 by President Xi Jinping when he called for the development of a Silk Road Economic Belt and a 21st Century Maritime Silk Road, the BRI is arguably one of the most significant, and largest, development initiatives in modern history.

     

    What is the China’s Belt & Road Initiative Event Series?

    The China’s Belt & Road Initiative Event Series is run in partnership by the Chamber of Commerce of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and CHINALUX.

    Starting with a launch event almost exactly one year ago now, we began by introducing the aims and ambitions of the BRI. The launch kicked off with speeches by Mr. Carlo Thelen, Director General of the Chamber of Commerce, and the Honorable Huang Changqing, Chinese Ambassador to Luxembourg, followed by an introductory presentation to the BRI, and a panel discussion on the potential involvement of Luxembourg under the BRI with leading experts from the Luxembourg logistics, ICT and finance sectors.  

    Since, we have held “deep-dive” seminars on the BRI topic to identify the expectations and opportunities for Luxembourg, specifically those relevant to the logistics, ICT and finance sectors. The logistics and ICT focused seminars took place earlier this year, and on the 10th of November 2017 (full details here) we will hold the finance focused seminar.

     

    What questions are you hoping to address?

    During the seminar on the 10th of November, we will tackle the question of what does China’s BRI really mean for Luxembourg, specifically within the context of the opportunities for the finance industry.  

    Secondly, we wish to explore in more detail the role of various Luxembourg finance industry players under the BRI.

     

    Who have you invited to speak about the opportunities for the Luxembourg finance sector?

    We will hear views from senior representatives and industry players in the fund, stock exchange, banking and fintech sectors from Luxembourg on the potential opportunities during the panel discussion, which will be moderated by Sascha Bremer, Luxembourg for Finance, Market Intelligence Advisor. The panellists will be as follows:

    - Mr. Yves Maas, Luxembourg Bankers' Association ("ABBL"), Chairman            

    - Mr. Camille Thommes, Association of the Luxembourg Fund Industry ("ALFI"), Director General          

    - Dr. Lyu Ke, Bank of China Luxembourg, Deputy Head/Director Corporate Banking    

    - Mr. Michael Pechner, Luxembourg Stock Exchange, Chief Commercial Officer        

    - Mr. Ning Wang, PingPong Europe, Chief Business Officer & Chief Financial Officer

    We have also invited seasoned speaker and leading expert on the BRI, Mr. Bo Ji, Assistant Dean of Global Executive Education & Chief Representative for Europe at Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business (CKGSB). Mr. Ji will provide a presentation on the topic of the impact of the BRI to the European financial sectors, setting the context and scene for the discussions to follow, and no doubt raising and discussing some integral questions surrounding the BRI with the seminar participants.

     

    What key messages do you hope the seminar participants to take home?

    It’s our aim that the participants of this seminar will take home an understanding of the BRI, as well as its implications for Luxembourg, and what this means for the finance industry.

     

    What do you hope to learn from this seminar yourself?

    From an aid, development and infrastructure perspective, the connection between Luxembourg’s finance industry and the BRI are clear. Luxembourg was the first European founding member of the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), a development bank established in 2015 that was initiated by the Chinese government, and which is dedicated to supporting infrastructure projects in the Asia-Pacific. Indeed, at the launch event of this event series, Mr. Carlo Thelen expressed that Luxembourg has long been identified as a reliable partner of China, and through its AIIB membership will continue its commitment to aid and development mechanisms, in particular those in the Asia-Pacific region.

    Furthermore, in Europe we are also seeing developments, for example, the announcement of the China-EU Co-Investment Fund, a new strategic cooperation between the European Investment Fund and the Silk Road Fund - a Chinese state-owned investment fund dedicated to the BRI - earlier this year.  

    What isn’t as well-known or as clear is the potential flow-on of opportunities within the context of the growing investments as a result of the BRI, namely in infrastructure – from land, air and freight, to e-commerce and telecommunications. What does this mean for the key players in the finance industry in Luxembourg? What are the Luxembourg funds / stock exchange / banking / fintech players doing in relation to the BRI? What are we are already doing in Luxembourg, and what should we be looking to do? In particular, this is what I am looking forward to hearing the panel discuss on the 10th of November.  

    Finally, like my colleagues and friends at ChinaLux, I’m of course very eager to hear from Minister Gramegna on what the BRI means for Luxembourg in his concluding speech. No doubt it will be an excellent “wrap-up” to this BRI event series!

     

    Participation to this event is free of charge, however registration is compulsory. Please visit the CHINALUX website for more details.

     

    Written on Thursday, 02 November 2017 13:11 Read 214 times

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