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NZCFS Wellington Branch January/February 2011 Newsletter

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HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Xīn Nián Kuài Lè!

CHINESE NEW YEAR BANQUET

Come and join us to welcome in


2011 year of the rabbit
Xin Nian Kuai Le


Sunday, 13th February 2011 at 6.30 pm

Dragons Restaurant, 25 Tory St

The Programme will include our traditional Quiz Contest and Raffles

Ambassador Xu Jianguo and Mayor Celia Wade-Brown will be attending

The cost, including wine and juice, is:

$38 per person for non-members and $33 for financial members

Menu

Three Treasures Soup

Roast Duck with Plum Sauce

Crackling Roast Pork

Crispy Chicken

Sizzling Combination Seafood

Chicken Cashew Nuts in Basket

Orange Beef

Stir-fry Asian Greens

Fried Rice – Steamed Rice

Sweet Red Bean Soup

Fresh Fruits

Chinese Tea

To book, please send the attached form to the Treasurer by Friday, 4th February.

No last minute arrivals please.

MEETING DATES FOR 2011

Your committee has organised the following speakers for 2011.  Please mark these dates in your diary.

Wednesday 16 March: AGM, HE Mr David Huebner

US Ambassador

“Managing a Law Firm in China Prior to Becoming Ambassador in New Zealand”



Wednesday 20 April: Associate Professor Val Lindsay

Victoria University of Wellington

“Service Success in Asia: Spotlight on China”


Wednesday 18 May: Dr Paul McDonald

Victoria Management School

“Contrasting Leadership Styles in China”



Wednesday 15 June: The Aroha String Quartet

“Our Story and Our Music”


Sunday 17 July: Dr James Liu

Deputy Director, Centre for Applied Cross Cultural Research, Victoria University of Wellington

“Chinese Indigenous Psychology”



Wednesday 17 August: Dr Han Xi

Chinese Language Adviser for New Zealand

“Exciting Developments in the Study of Chinese”




Wednesday 21 September: HE Mr Xu Jianguo

PRC Ambassador to New Zealand

(title of presentation to be confirmed)



Wednesday 19 October: Mr Chris Elder

Director of the Europe Division, MFAT and NZ Ambassador to China (1994-1998)

“Reflections on China”


Wednesday 16 November: Mr David Feickert

Recipient of The China Friendship Award in 2009 and an international expert on coal mine safety

“Mine Safety in China: Lessons for New Zealand”


REPORT ON LAST MEETING – Douglas Day

To a substantial audience of sixty eight, member Michael Powles gave a scholarly and insightful presentation, “Perspectives on Human Rights in China”, to the final Branch meeting of the year on Wednesday 17 November, 2010.

Michael was New Zealand’s Ambassador to China from 1990 to 1993. Before then he had been high commissioner in Fiji and ambassador in Indonesia. In 1993 he was appointed Deputy Secretary of MFAT and from 1996 to 2001 was New Zealand’s ambassador to the United Nations. He served as a Human Rights Commissioner from 2002 to 2005 and lived in China from 2005 to 2008 while his wife was New Zealand Consul-General in Shanghai.

Michael began with the question, “Is there anything distinctive about New Zealand perspectives on human rights?” and briefly but skilfully answered that there was.

From there he proceeded to demonstrate the universality of human rights though clearly observing that this does not mean uniformity, or disregard of the different cultures or traditions of different societies. Then to reflect in carefully chosen detail on human rights in China; firstly economic and social rights, and secondly civil and political rights (the latter with reference to recent disturbing reported events in China).

Michael’s presentation challenged us to recognise the need for better understanding on both sides of the issue of human rights.

He concluded, convincingly, in this way: “On the goodwill (between China and the Western world) depends not only our future peace and prosperity, but also the prospect for New Zealanders, of the enormous enrichment of our own culture and way of life as we interact ever more closely with China and its people”.

Dame Laurie Salas gave the Vote of Thanks.

An electronic version of Michael’s text is available from Newsletter Coordinator Douglas Day at dwaday@xtra.co.nz

SUBSCRIPTION RENEWALS

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

NZCFS NEW WEBSITE UP AND RUNNING

The new NZCFS website (still at the original address https://nzchinasociety.org.nz) has been fully operational since just before Christmas. This website is the culmination of a project undertaken by the website committee comprising Dave Bromwich (North Island Vice-President) as the Chairman, with Christine Strickland, Duncan France and Ray Brownrigg.

The new site has been completely redesigned from the bottom up with a view to providing service to members, at the same time appealing to casual visitors. Much design effort has been put into creating a site which encourages branches to provide valuable information, and which interacts with the search engines, such as Google, to promote the site’s contents to anyone searching for relevant material.

NOTICE OF ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING – WEDNESDAY MARCH 16, 2011

This is the first notice for the Branch AGM which will be held on Wednesday, 16 March 2011 at 5.45pm at Connolly Hall.

Nominations are invited for President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and seven Committee members. Nomination forms will be available in the next issue of the Newsletter. Also in the next Newsletter, there will be information on current officers and committee members who are prepared to serve for another year.

Following the AGM there will be a presentation by US Ambassador HE Mr David Huebner (see 2011 program). Members please consider standing.

2011 NZCFS NATIONAL CONFERENCE

Wellington Branch will be hosting the National Conference of NZCFS Inc over the weekend of May 27-29, 2011. The venue will be the Wellington City Council Chambers. The theme of the Conference is China & NZ: The Next Decade, indicating an emphasis on looking forward to the future of the friendship between our two countries. The Conference will open at 6pm on Friday evening, with the formalities being followed by a guest speaker and refreshments. Then on Saturday 7 or 8 speakers will be followed by an evening banquet. Sunday morning will be occupied by the society Annual General Meeting, followed by a National Executive Meeting in the afternoon.

Further details, including registration costs and speaker details will be kept up to date on the website.

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

Mandarin Corner will resume on Saturday 12 February 2011

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 February:

12 February – Let’s chat about the Rabbit and its year 兔年说兔

19 February – Talking about the Lantern Festival 话说元宵

26 February – Di Zi Gui: Suitable for the Old and Young 老少咸宜《弟子规》

Contact: Ellen Yang (04) 473-7558,mandarin.corner@gmail.com。

CHINESE FILM + MANDARIN CORNER – Note new venue with combined activities

Venue: Mezzanine Meeting Room, Wellington Central Library

JANUARY 2011 Date: Tuesday 25 January Time: 6.00pm – 8.30pm

1. 6.00pm – Mandarin Corner 汉语角

2. 6.30pm – Documentary: China’s Celebration of the Spring Festival (春节里的中国)

3. 7.00pm – Chinese feature film: The Ring of Rainbow Flower (夏天有风吹过)

A beautiful, poetic film about two young university students, Banxia and Tianqing. In the face of the ruthless departure and choice, even the finest years would be filled with growth pains. Their youth footsteps are like the wind in summer which will only leave behind warm recollections after it has blown. English subtitle, 95 minutes.

FEBRUARY 2011 Date: Monday 28 February Time: 6.00pm – 8.30pm

1. 6.00pm – Mandarin Corner 汉语角

2. 6.30pm – Chinese feature film: Forever Enthralled 梅兰芳

Directed by Chen Kaige and starred by Leon Lai, Ziyi Zhang, Sun Honglei and Chen Hong, this film is a must see about the life of the world famous Peking Opera master, Mei Lanfang. English subtitle, 138 minutes.

Tea and biscuits provided. Donations are welcome.

Contact: Ellen Yang 杨川 (04) 473-7558,mandarin.corner@gmail.com

CHINESE NEW YEAR FESTIVAL – 5, 12 & 13 February Website: chinesenewyear.org.nz

2011 welcomes the Year of the Rabbit and the 10th Chinese New Year Festival in Wellington. Celebrate with a week of entertainment including a parade and fireworks, fashion show, Asian market and children’s activities.

12 noon – 3.00pm, 5 February, Capital E – Sin Nian Rabbit Magic

1.00pm – 3.00pm, 12 February, Queens Wharf – ‘New Clothes for the New Year’ Fashion Show

9.00pm, 12 February, Frank Kitts Park – Fireworks celebrating the festival’s 10th anniversary

10.00am – 4.00pm, 13 February, TSB Bank Arena – Asian Market

2.00pm – 3.00pm, 13 February, Courtenay Place – Street Parade

3.00pm – 4.30pm, 13 February, Frank Kitts Park – Cultural entertainment

MANAGING BUSINESS RELATIONSHIPS AND RISKS WITH CHINA – Dr Hongzhi Gao

The first ‘academic research matched by practice’ business symposium on China successfully took place in Auckland on the 3 December 2010. The symposium was jointly organised by the China Trade Association and the Contemporary China Research Centre, with generous support from NZTE, Victoria University, AUT and Cathay Pacific. The event attracted 77 participants from a wide range of public and business sectors including universities and research institutes, government agencies, trade associations, consulting, investment, design, food & beverage, tourism and logistics bodies, airlines, high tech, natural health and skin care, education, farm tech, animal products, equipment and manufacturing operations. The focal theme in the symposium was “managing business relationships risks in China”. The presentations and following panel sessions stimulated deep and insightful discussion on the key issues NZ firms have to address when doing business in China. Despite the fact that it was run for the first time, we have witnessed great success of getting academics and practitioners together and presenting issues and solutions in a complementary and interactive way. During and after the event, the organisers received some really positive feedback on the organising and content of the event.

VISITOR NUMBERS FROM CHINA MORE THAN DOUBLED

Statistics New Zealand has reported that visitor numbers from China have more than doubled in 2010 compared with 2009. A year ago tourist numbers from China, as from other countries in Asia, were down sharply because of the impact of the swine flu epidemic, but the region is now rebounding strongly.

Tourism New Zealand chief executive Kevin Bowler welcomed the greater numbers from China and said, “I think what we will see in China is a rapid maturing … from doing tours in a bus following a flag around, to very quickly becoming semi-independent travellers, getting out to more places in the country and staying a bit longer”.

In related news, China Southern Airlines (China’s largest airline) has announced a thrice-weekly direct Guangzhou-Auckland service, starting in April.

POSTCARDS FROM EXOTIC PLACES – A CHINESE NEW YEAR CONCERT

Wellington Michael Fowler Centre, Saturday 29 January, 8pm

Two dazzling young Chinese artists will star in the NZSO’s concert celebrating the Chinese New Year. Hong Kong-born conductor Perry So will lead the orchestra. Only in his twenties, he is already set to become a classical music megastar. He will be joined by 24 year-old violinist Tianwa Yang, whose performances in the US have excited both critics and audiences. A former child prodigy, Yang was described as “The Pride of China” when she was only 11 years old.

The concert opens with Chinese-American composer Bright Sheng’s Postcards, which draw a series of colourful pictures of a mystical, old-world Chinese landscape. It then moves through a newer China with arias from Jack Body’s opera Alley, based on the life of Rewi Alley, sung by Australian counter-tenor Jon Jackson. This musical odyssey comes to a magnificent conclusion in America with Dvorak’s thrilling Symphony No.9. NZSO is using the Chinese New Year as an opportunity to focus on China’s growing importance in the classical music world.

The concert is presented in association with Four Winds Foundation Limited. Book at Ticketek 0800 842 538 www.ticketek.co.nz

CHINA TOUR REPORT – Robin Halliday

The New Zealand China Friendship Society “Rural Project Tour” in October 2010 sounded a great opportunity for the Hallidays to understand better the “‘two Chinas” the World Bank identifies: one, part of the developed world and the other, firmly rooted in the developing world. This divide is recognised as causing tension and is being acknowledged and addressed in Beijing.

The tour led by Dave Bromwich, an experienced agricultural project manager with extensive experience in China, took us to the provincial towns, the autonomous regions, ethnic villages, and major tourist centres, but for me the most interesting of all were the small rural communities we visited. The projects were small scale and focused on diversifying crops, adding value through production techniques and livestock breeding programmes. They were mostly recently formed co-operatives that had in some cases grown out of Farmers Associations and allowed the small holdings to be amalgamated to provide work and increased income through joint marketing. These fit within the Government’s “Vegetable Basket” project and are increasing the income of farmers.

The projects we saw included dairy and sheep breeding cooperatives, vegetable hothouses, an egg cooperative, pear orchard, tourist fishing complex, walnut oil production, black date and Chinese hot peppers processing, tea crops and rabbit breeding.

Some of the highlights of the tour included the time spent in the Tibetan Autonomous Region of Sichuan and the high mountain passes. The Ancient Pengzhou Irrigation scheme, the Historic Theme Park in Kaifeng, Tibetan and Miao ethnic villages, the Sichuan Opera and the cruise down the Li River with the magnificent Sound and Light Show were all very special.

What can I say about the ‘two Chinas’? Like the wide concrete motorways that connect them, the rural communities and their economies do need continuous maintenance and steady growth if they are to develop and grow in strength. Small though they are, the projects we saw contribute to that so let us hope they can continue.

LOWER NORTH ISLAND REGIONAL MEETING, Saturday 29 January, 12:30pm

This meeting will be held in Palmerston North at the ETC Learning Centre, Broadway Avenue. It is a great opportunity for the five branches in the region to get together to exchange ideas and to be kept up to date on the Society’s activities, followed by a dinner at a Chinese restaurant. All members are welcome to attend. If you would like to take part, please contact Bruce Asher, Wellington Secretary.

SILK ROAD SONGS AND SHANGHAI JAZZ USHER IN CHINESE NEW YEAR 2011

ASKAR GREY WOLF BAND PERFORMS SONGS FROM THE OLD SILK ROAD, Wednesday, 23 February 8pm – San Francisco Bath House, Cuba Street – $15 door charge

China’s rock band sensation Askar Grey Wolf was born in Turkic-speaking Xinjiang province, at the heart of the old Silk Road.

The band will perform a special one-off show in Wellington, with local support acts, and is a highlight of the 2011 Auckland and Christchurch Lantern festival.

Lead singer Askar Mamat, an Uyghur by birth, fuses modern rock with a mix of Han Chinese and Xinjiang elements. Askar sings in both Mandarin and his own mother tongue, and his band members are drawn from both the Han and Uyghur ethnicities.

In addition to the electric guitar the band’s music features a variety of instruments, including the rawap (a plucked Uyghur instrument), the dap (an Uyghur hand drum), the long-necked stringed tambur and the round bodied fiddle ghijak.

In 2001 the band was invited to be the guest artist for the Three Tenors at their concert in the Forbidden City in Beijing. Askar Grey Wolf has released several albums and has travelled to many overseas countries, including a successful Australian tour in 2009.

SHANGHAI BAI YULAN (WHITE MAGNOLLIA) BAND, Thursday, 24 February 6pm – Illott Theatre

In the 1930s, foreigners and Chinese alike danced the night away to American-style jazz bands in the crowded nightclubs and dance halls of Shanghai, ‘the Paris of the Orient’. Today, new styles of jazz are once again drawing the crowds.

Founded in 1992, the band plays at a trendy new entertainment area in Shanghai called New Factories. Today White Magnolia and other new jazz bands are generally formed by graduates of the Shanghai Conservatory of Music like lead singer Zheng Bin and lead guitarist Duan Changwu – China’s only recognised flamenco musician.

The Wellington show is presented jointly with a local band Poppy Dust. Tickets are $15 each from Ticketek. For more details, see www.asianz.org.nz/our-work/arts-and-community/festivals/chinese-lantern-festival

NZCFS 2011 UNIQUE CHINA TOUR – 9 cities, 18 days, 13-30 April

This is an excellent compact tour with a broad range of activities. It includes visits to the famous sites – the Great Wall and Forbidden City in Beijing, the Terracotta Warriors in Xian, and the Yu Gardens of Shanghai – with equally amazing sites not generally covered in tours to China. For much more detail see https://nzchinasociety.org.nz/1260/discover-china-tour-april-2011/, or contact: andrewk@hot.co.nz 0800 80 80 25

BOOK CORNER (from Douglas Day)

Non-Fiction titles this time:

“Mao’s Great Famine: The History of China’s Most Devastating Catastrophe”, by Frank Dikotter, Bloomsbury, 2010

A masterly book of 448 pages length which outlines the devastating effect of China’s Great Leap Forward.

“Drink Water, but Remember the Source: Moral Discourse in a Chinese Village”, by Ellen Oxfeld, University of California Press, 2010

This study explores a key to understanding how rural Chinese experience and talk about their lives in the current period of rapid economic transformation in China. Oxfeld spent time in a village in southeast China’s Guangdong Province.

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