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NZCFS Wellington Branch April 2011 Newsletter

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At our next Branch Meeting

Associate Professor Val Lindsay

will speak on

“Service Success in Asia: Spotlight on China”

 

Associate Professor Val LindsayDr Val Lindsay is an Associate Professor in International Business and former Head of the School of Marketing and International Business at Victoria University of Wellington. She has a keen interest in teaching and research in the areas of international strategy, exporting, services internationalization, and small and medium-sized enterprises. She has recently led a major research project on the internationalization of service firms into China and India. Val has held previous academic positions at the University of Auckland and the University of Warwick, UK. Val also has extensive experience working in government organizations and in industry, having roles with the Tertiary Education Commission, the New Zealand Trade Development Board, and with the pharmaceutical companies, ICI Ltd, and Ciba-Geigy Ltd., following an earlier career in medical research. Val has consulted widely in the areas of strategic management and international business for organizations in New Zealand and the UK.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011, at 5.45 pmConnolly Hall Location

Connolly Hall

Guildford Terrace, off Hill Street, Thorndon, Wellington.

(Car park up Guildford Tce beside Hall)

 

An optional Chinese buffet meal, supplied by the Fujiyama Café, will follow the meeting at 7 pm. Orders for the $11.00 meal (please pay at the door) will be taken up till 6 pm. If you think you may be arriving late, please let the Secretary know in advance.

NEW MEMBERS

A warm welcome to the following new members: Ana Baide, Ann Croy, Hongzhi Gao and Parley Reynolds.

SUBSCRIPTION RENEWALS

Subscriptions for 2011 are now due. Please use the form attached to the previous two newsletters. We prefer that you fill in all the details on the subscription form each year to confirm that we have your correct details

REPORT ON LAST MEETING (from Douglas Day)

HE David Huebner

An enlightening presentation by US Ambassador David Huebner preceded the AGM at our meeting on Wednesday March 16.

Choosing as his theme, “Managing a Law Firm in China Prior to Becoming Ambassador in New Zealand”, Ambassador Huebner presented a fascinating personal story of setting up and heading the operations of US law firm Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton in China.

Based in Shanghai, he and his team specialized in international arbitration and mediation, and handled a wide range of matters across the Pacific Rim region.

Ambassador Huebner captured a sense of adventure in his presentation of how he started in a modest way in a small office in his new country; and eventually moved on to 25 lawyers (mostly Chinese), with administrative staff as well, in substantial premises in downtown Shanghai.

Using no notes, he captured our attention completely, greatly adding to our cross-cultural understanding, to our perception of living and working in a new country, and to our knowledge of the challenges faced in a constantly evolving legal system such as exists in China today.

The presentation was an outstanding prelude to the AGM that followed.

The AGM resulted in the election of the following Officers and Committee for 2011/2012:

President: Bernie Richmond Vice President: Ray Brownrigg

Secretary: Bruce Asher Treasurer: Doreen Launder

Committee: Bing Fon, Elaine Richmond, Rosemary Jones, Ellen Yang, Gregory Ford, George Mills (new member) and Luke Qin (new member).

Douglas Day will continue in his role as Immediate Past President (a non-elected position).

A vote of thanks for the work of the Committee Members who have resigned, for the contribution over a significant number of years in a variety of spheres of Christine Strickland, and for the strong leadership of Bernie Richmond, was warmly endorsed.

MEETING DATES FOR 2011

May 18, Wednesday 5.45pm: Dr Paul McDonald, “Contrasting Leadership Styles in China”

May 27-29: National Conference, Wellington

June 15, Wednesday 5.45pm: The Aroha String Quartet, “Our Story and Our Music”

July 17, Sunday 2.30pm: Professor James Liu, “Chinese Indigenous Psychology”

August 17, Wednesday 5.45pm: Dr Han Xi, “Exciting Developments in the Study of Chinese in Schools”

September 21, Wednesday 5.45pm: HE Mr Xu Jianguo, PRC Ambassador (topic to be confirmed)

October 19, Wednesday 5.45pm: Mr Chris Elder, “Reflections on China”

November 16, Wednesday 5.45pm: Mr David Feickert, “Mine Safety in China: Lessons for New Zealand”

OPENING CEREMONY FOR CONFUCIUS INSTITUTE

Ambassador Xu Jianguo Speaks at the Confucius Institute opening

Compered by Director Dr Hui Luo, an impressive Opening Ceremony for the Confucius Institute at Victoria University of Wellington was held in the Hunter Council Chamber on the evening of Thursday March 24.

A reception preceded the formalities, which included a welcome by Professor Neil Quigley, Deputy Vice Chancellor of VUW, and speeches by Hon Steven Joyce Minister of Tertiary Education, Ambassador Xu Jianguo and Professor Wu Daguan of Xiamen University (which university is linked with VUW for the CI). The evening concluded with a wonderful concert (interspersed by poetry readings from the great dynasties of Chinese history) by the “New Purple Forbidden City Orchestra”, China’s finest ensemble of traditional instrumentalists.

Immediate Past President of our Branch, Douglas Day, has been invited to join the Board of the CIVUW and this association will mean that the Branch becomes closely linked with the activities of the institute.

Country/City/Home Film FestivalComing up in April, the Institute is presenting a Chinese Film Festival and a Photography Exhibition, both entitled “Country/City/Home”. The Film Festival presents 3 documentaries and 3 Feature Films from 8-10 April at the Paramount Theatre. The Photography Exhibition runs from 6 April to 6 May at the St James Theatre Gallery. There is an Opening Reception for both events at the St James Theatre Gallery at 5pm on Friday 8th April, at which everyone is welcome.

 

WASTEWATER: A significant negative by-product of economic expansion, tackled in part by additional positive economic activity (contributed by George Mills)

As is common in all developing economies, China’s rapid economic expansion over the past several decades has severally affected the country’s natural environment. One area of particular concern has been in the area of wastewater treatment, particularly as it indirectly affects China’s historic water scarcity. With China’s industry, agricultural sector, and multiple large municipalities producing huge and unsustainable amounts of wastewater, resulting in the pollution of China’s rivers, lakes, and nearby land, both the central and provisional governments have laboured intensely to control and manage this problem. This has entailed the planning for, and construction of, large numbers of wastewater treatment plants throughout the country, and separately, the introduction of regulatory and economic instruments (such as water usage and wastewater tariffs) which aim to induce users to use water more sustainably, and polluters to reduce waste emission. The former, construction, has benefited from generally robust funding and a favourable investment climate (cushioned by the Chinese government’s recent financial stimuli), but the latter tariff systems have often suffered from weak enforcement at the local level. In all this, a significant market for the know-how and technology necessary to tackle wastewater treatment has been growing in China, producing fierce competition amongst both local and foreign firms, with the local firms competitive on price, while the foreign firms are respected for their technology and expertise. Coming full circle, a new industry, aiming to reverse the environmental degradation of earlier periods of economic expansion, has emerged as another vibrant sector of China’s huge market.

MANDARIN CORNER 汉语角 3.15pm – 4.30pm Saturdays during school terms

Victoria University of Wellington, Seminar Room, 20 Kelburn Parade. Gold coin donation.

Open to all ages, all levels. One to one, or small groups.

Three sessions in April: 2 April, 9 April, 16 April.

Contact: Ellen Yang (04) 473-7558, [email protected]

CHINESE FILM + MANDARIN CORNER – New Venue with combined activities

Mezzanine Meeting Room, Wellington Central Library 6.00pm – 8.30pm

Friday 15 April

6.00pm – Mandarin Corner 汉语角 7.00pm – Documentaries: Dunhuang Flying Apsaras 敦煌飞天,Yangshuo – the global Village of China 阳朔 – 中国的地球村,Black Elves 黑精灵 (English version, in total 81 minutes). These 3 documentaries provide different aspects on China: cultural heritage, modern China, wildlife and environment protection.

Friday 29 April

6.00pm – Mandarin Corner 汉语角 6.50pm – Chinese feature film: A Bright Moon 一轮明月

The film is the biographic story of Li Shutong (Master Hongyi), a celebrity in modern Chinese culture. Born to a rich family in Tianjin in 1880, Li Shutong changed his dramatic life to become a great monk of the time, Master Hongyi. Excellent acting. More info in Chinese – http://www.szjt.org/bgs/xush/after0601/ghg.htm.

Starring: Pu Cunxi 濮存昕 Directors: Chen Jianlin陈家林, Lu Qi 路奇. English subtitle, 100 minutes.

Tea and biscuits provided. Donations are welcome.

Contact: Ellen Yang 杨川 (04) 473-7558, [email protected]

 

TAKING EXTRA CARE OF CHINA’S FOREIGN-BASED WORKERS (contributed by George Mills)

In late February, and early March of this year, China conducted what was probably one of the most successful evacuations of foreign-based nationals, when it worked with several regional countries to provide for the safe passage out of Libya of over 35,000 Chinese workers (besides several thousand nationals of other countries, as well). Relying on its diplomatic missions in Libya, as well as Egypt, Tunisia, Sudan, Greece, and Malta, and a massive coordination effort between several civilian and military bureaucracies in China, the PRC used both ship and air transport to move several thousand evacuees out of Libya per day, to safe locations in the region, and thereafter for a majority of the evacuees, back to China. This effort was lauded in Chinese media as a classic example of the PRC government’s “people-first” philosophy. That said, an arguably more insightful and pragmatic, though no less positive, take on the evacuations, was provided by an article in the People’s Liberation Army daily, which noted that “as China is increasingly integrating into the international community, it is relying heavily on overseas energy sources, as well as overseas markets, and therefore, its interests have expanded far beyond its traditional territory. China’s increasing globalization has also encouraged its citizens to work abroad. These non-resident Chinese create and maintain Chinese interests overseas and become an integral part of the country’s national security (italics added). Their security is, therefore, the country’s responsibility”. A strong confirmation of the PRC’s commitment to its ever growing overseas strategic investments, as well as to the thousand of non-resident Chinese who, with their presence in often uncertain, and even dangerous locations, make these investments possible.

2011 NZCFS NATIONAL CONFERENCE – WELLINGTON MAY 27-29

Full information was provided in Newsletter No 1102 and can also be accessed from the following website: nzchinasociety.org.nz/5386/nzcfs-2011-national-conference-wellington-27-29-may-3/

Speakers on the Saturday include the Chinese Ambassador HE Mr Xu Jianguo, Mr David Feickert, Ms Laytee George, Mr Stuart Fergusson, Dr Les Molloy, Mr Dave Bromwich, Dr Hui Luo and Hon Philip Burdon.

A Registration Form for the Conference is attached. Note that Members are welcome to attend just the Saturday Banquet, at which there will be some entertainment.

NZCFS PROJECTS AND TIBETAN COMMUNITIES TOUR, OCTOBER 2011

National Vice President Dave Bromwich has created a fascinating itinerary for this year’s NZCFS Projects and Tibetan Communities Tour in October, 2011 and this is now up on the website at:

nzchinasociety.org.nz/5335/nzcfs-projects-and-tibetan-communities-tour-2011/

The proposed dates are October 10 to October 31, but these may vary by 1-2 days as international travel options are finalised.

This tour will visit New Zealand China Friendship Society projects in the Baoji district of Shaanxi province, and then travel through Gansu, Qinghai and Yunnan provinces with a focus on Tibetan communities, as well as spending seven days in Tibet.

In Shaanxi, tour members will meet with our NZCFS project partners – the Shaanxi Women’s Federation, in Lanzhou they will dine with two of the NZCFS Kathleen Hall (He Ming Qing) scholars, and in Yunnan they will visit a New Zealand venture growing red pears.

The estimated price, depending on the exchange rate and final air fares available, is $7100, twin share, for 21 days in China. This is an all up cost, and includes all travel from a New Zealand home town airport and return. The only extra costs should be the Chinese visa and travel insurance costs.

The Projects Tours, so ably led by Dave Bromwich, have been a great success and it is likely that this one will fill up as quickly as all the others. The direct link to the latest flyer with the detailed itinerary is:

nzchinasociety.org.nz/wp-content/uploads/2011/03/NZCFSOct2011TourFlyer.pdf

For further information and expressions of interest please contact Dave Bromwich direct at: [email protected]

GENEROUS EARTHQUAKE DONATION FROM YOUXIE

Our sister organisation in China, the Chinese People’s Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries (CPAFFC or Youxie) responded very promptly to news about the earthquake in Christchurch and made an incredibly generous donation of Y100,000 (about $NZ20,000). This was presented to the New Zealand Embassy in Beijing the day after the ’quake.

BOOK CORNER (from Douglas Day)

Non Fiction

Ancestral Leaves: A Family Journey through Chinese History, by Joseph W Esherick, University of California Press, 2011

Ancestral Leaves follows one family through six hundred years of Chinese history and brings to life the epic narrative of the nation, from the fourteenth century through to the Cultural Revolution. The lives of the Ye family – “Ye” means leaf in Chinese – reveal the human side of the large-scale events that shaped modern China.

Fiction

The Last Empress by Anchee Min, Houghton Mifflin, 2007

This historical novel provides a sympathetic account of the life of Empress Dowager Cixi (referred to as Empress Orchid) from her rise to power as Empress Tzu-Hsi, until her death at 72 years of age.