New leader at China's Chamber
Updated: 2015-03-25 06:23
By CAI CHUNYING in Washington(China Daily USA)
Xu Chen (fourth from left), president and CEO of the Bank of China USA, speaks after his election as chairman of the China General Chamber of Commerce-USA (CGCC) during the chamber's 2015 meeting in Washington on Monday. On the head table with Xu are (from left) Yuan Ning, president of China Construction America and outgoing chairman of CGCC; Tian Deyou, minister counselor from the Chinese Embassy; Chen Yu, Sinochem Americas president; and Joe Han, China Telecom Americas president. [PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY]
With Chinese investment in the United States increasingly rising, an organization that represents Chinese companies' common interests is refining its services.
The China General Chamber of Commerce–USA (CGCC), the largest nonprofit organization representing Chinese enterprises in the US, held its annual meeting in Washington on Monday.
Yuan Ning, president of China Construction USA, who served as chairman of CGCC prior to this year's meeting, delivered the organization's annual report.
Under Yuan's four-year leadership, CGCC has grown and played an increasingly important role in bringing Chinese companies together and getting more recognition from American society.
This year's meeting, attended by 47 board directors and 14 general members, elected Xu Chen, president and CEO of Bank of China USA, as the new chairman.
"Xu will undoubtedly lead the organization with passion and intensity,” said Yuan. “CGCC is certain to achieve new milestones under his new leadership."
Xu started his banking career at the Bank of China head office in 1990. He was the general manager of the bank's Olympic affairs department, which was set up to provide service for the 2008 Beijing Olympics, as its sole bank partner. Xu became the head of the bank's US subsidiary earlier this year.
"CGCC has internally brought together all the major names of Chinese companies in the US,” Xu said. “Externally, CGCC has actively engaged with the American society through networking and public outreach and served as bridge and linkage between the US and China."
Xu told China Daily he plans to enhance CGCC's role by promoting the brand of Chinese companies collectively; protecting Chinese companies' legal rights; advocating for fairer regulations by US federal and local governments; and providing comprehensive information for new Chinese investors, especially middle- and small-sized businesses.
Xu said he also envisions CGCC serving as a bridge for American investors to enter China’s markets.
The meeting coincided with the Second Select USA Investment Summit, a high-level forum organized by the Commerce Department to attract investors worldwide.
To welcome the 150 investors from China attending the summit, CGCC hosted a reception on Monday evening at the Chinese Embassy, which allowed the newcomers to learn of the experiences of CGCC's current members.
Chinese Ambassador to the US Cui Tiankai stressed CGCC's role at the reception.
"CGCC has enjoyed 10 years of growth, and is the family for Chinese investors in the United States,” Cui said. “It is also the fire spark for Chinese investment.".
Cui also spoke highly of Yuan's service to CGCC.
"I know your company is building a lot of bridges in the United States, but I think one of the most important bridges you've helped to build is this general chamber of commerce, which is really a good bridge between the two business communities in both countries," Cui said.
US Deputy Secretary of Commerce Bruce Andrews also praised CGCC's contribution.
"We appreciate the active role that CGCC and its members have played in supporting high-level engagements between the US and Chinese governments – such as the US-China Joint Commission on Commerce and Trade and the Strategic and Economic Dialogue," Andrews said.
"I understand that CGCC members come from all over China," he said. "As our bilateral economic ties deepen, we would like to take advantage of your connections to further our engagement at the subnational level, reaching out beyond the coastal regions."
Established in 2015, CGCC has six regional chapters across the US: Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco and Washington.
It also has a growing number of industrial committees in the automotive, energy, chemical financial, information technology, real estate, transportation and logistics industries. Thirty-eight CGCC members are from Fortune 500 companies.
The organization's annual gala last year attracted more than 300 guests, including Cui, US Department of Commerce Undersecretary Stefan Selig, US Senator Robert Menendez, who is also chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.