Philly suburbs host bizz delegates

Updated: 2013-10-29 11:04

By Caroline Berg in New York (China Daily USA)

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Chester County, Pennsylvania, knows how to attract big name business, whether it's locally grown outfits like software manufacturer Bentley Systems or international corporations like Germany's engineering and electronics conglomerate Siemens.

On Monday, the county began its first ever Sino-American Regional Economic Business and Culture Exchange Summit to help establish and enhance economic cooperation and culture exchange particularly between the counties in the Greater Philadelphia Area and the city of Chongqing in southwest China.

China currently has nine direct deals and a total of $79 million invested in Pennsylvania-based business, according to the latest China Investment Monitor report published last Friday by the Rhodium Group. These investments exclude the agriculture and food industry, as well as the energy, information technology, and transport and construction sectors, Rhodium reported.

A delegation of 25 business people from China participated in a three-day tour of Chester County as part of the summit, according to the Chester County Economic Development Council (CCEDC).

The Chester County Commissioners, along with the CCEDC and Chester County Chamber of Business and Industry are hosting the summit. Chester County-based ABD International and the Main Line Chinese Culture Center (MLCCC) initiated a connection between Chester County and Chongqing, among other regions in China, according to the CCEDC.

ABD International helps connect local and regional governments in the US and China for economic and cultural exchanges, as well as for mutually beneficial business developments. MLCCC is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, nonpolitical organization that serves as a catalyst to increase understanding between the US and Chinese cultures.

Activities on Monday was based on a business and industry theme. Before lunch, there was a welcome by Chester County Commissioner Terence Farrell, a speech from a representative of the Chinese delegation, and an overview of council operations from Mike Grigalonis, Chief Operating Officer of the CCEDC.

After fueling up on lunch, the Chinese delegation was scheduled to visit the world's leading video and e-commerce retailer QVC, which recently launched a channel in China, before touring West Chester.

(China Daily USA 10/29/2013 page2)