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Auckland branch welcomes high-level delegation from Beijing

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Auckland branch had the honour of welcoming a high-level delegation from Beijing at a dinner on Tuesday, September 4th 2011.  The delegation was lead by Mr Liao Hui, Vice-Chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) [the Chinese equivalent of the US Senate] and also President of the China-Oceania Friendship Assoc. (COFA).

Auckland President George Andrews stood in for National President Eric Livingstone who had issued the formal invitation for the delegation to visit New Zealand. 

George had also invited leading members of Auckland Council and the Director of MFAT’s Auckland office, as well as Mme Liao the Consul-General and Mme Long Yanping, the Cultural Consul (see table below for all the guests).

George warmly welcomed Mr Liao and his delegation.  He recalled that back in 1952 the Society’s initial aim was for New Zealand to give diplomatic recognition to China.  This reflected Rewi Alley’s philosophy.  He underlined that next year the Society would be celebrating the 40th year since this was achieved, as well as the Society’s 60th anniversary.  He expressed the hope that Auckland Council would come on board for both occasions.

 

In reply, Mr Liao pointed out that 60 + 40 made a really auspicious number and he wished us and Auckland all the best for our celebrations next year.  He recounted that, as a youth, he had met Rewi Alley, but, at the time, he hadn’t realised how important Rewi was.  He said that, hopefully, his wife, who is President of the Chinese Dancers  Association (and also present in his delegation), would be able to arrange for a leading dance group to come for the celebrations next year.

Councillor Penny Webster said that fostering international connections is seen by the City Council as an important part of making Auckland a more internationally competitive and innovative city and that the evening’s event highlighted the importance of these connections.

She emphasised that visits are planned by Mayor Len Brown to China in November this year and in April 2012 and these visits will strengthen our mutual friendship and international business links.

The Council looks forward to growing their connections with China, over and above existing partner-city relationships with Guangzhou, Qingdao, and Ningbo, and to working together to build a mutually beneficial, harmonious and prosperous future.

The food and company were excellent – many toasts were proposed including one by NZCFS National Secretary, Heiko Lade, in Mandarin.  Both went down very well!! 

It should be noted that the delegation was certainly high-powered, counting among its members Mr Liu Beixian, President of China News Service, (the Chinese equivalent of Reuters).  Having a staff of 2000 reporters, he is responsible for the distribution of Chinese national news internationally, and vice versa.

The occasion proved to be a great opportunity to promote Auckland branch’s activities in celebration of the Society’s 60th anniversary, planned for May next year.

The dinner was a great success in introducing to Auckland Council the fact that our small Society has such influence in high places in China, and we look forward to fruitful co-operation with them in future, especially for the 40th anniversary of NZ according diplomatic relations to China.

Guests at Auckland branch Dinner, Sep 6, 2011

PRC Delegation

Mr Liao Hui

Vice-Chairman of the 10th National Committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC). 

President China-Oceania Friendship Assoc. (COFA)

Ms Zhao Ruheng

Chairman of Chinese Dancers Assoc., COFA Council Member

Mr Wu Wei

Secretary of Mr Liao Hui, COFA Council Member

Mr Zhang Jinpu

Security guard to Mr Liao Hui COFA Council member

Mr Qing Boming

Deputy Director General, Dept. of American and Oceanian Affairs of CPAFFC (Youxie), Secretary Genl. of COFA

Mr Liu Beixian

President of China News Service, COFA Council Member

Mr Liu Chang Le

Chairman of Board and CEO of Phoenix TV, KOFA Council Member

Mr Qin Xiaohau

Manager of Sinopec Corp. Service Centre and KOFA Council Member

Mr Wong Wai Ming

President of Ningbo Delson Green World Golf Club, KOFA Council Member

Ms Wong Miao

Editor in Chief of Hong Kong Press (HKCTP)

Ms Song Yngkun

Director of CEO’s Office of Phoenix TV, Exec. Asst to Mr Liu Chang Le

Mr Shu Fenghua

Director, Division Canadian and Oceanian Affairs, Dept. of American and Oceanian Affairs, CPAFFC

Ms Wong Lidan

Staff, Division Canadian and Oceanian Affairs, Dept. of American and Oceanian Affairs, CPAFFC

Ms Ye Zi

Staff, Division Canadian and Oceanian Affairs, Dept. of American and Oceanian Affairs, CPAFFC

PRC Consulate Auckland

Mme Liao Juhua

PRC Consul-General Auckland

Mme Long Yanping

PRC Cultural Consul

Auckland Council:

Ms Penny Webster  

Councillor, Chair Finance & Strategy Committee

Mr Doug McKay

Chief Executive Officer

Ms Tara Pradhan

Head of International Relations

MFAT

Mr Warwick Hawker

Director Auckland Office Minstry of Foreign Affairs and Trade

NZCFS Auckland

Ms Cecil Fowler

Past President:

Mr George Andrews

President

Ms Estella Lee

Member

NZCFS

Mr Heiko Lade

National Secretary

Mr Duncan France

President Hibiscus branch