Welcome to the Washington State China Relations Council’s first “China Quarterly Report.” The intent of this communique is to provide timely and important information about U.S.-China relations, key developments of interest and relevance in China, and an update on the progress of local entities in their interactions with China. The Council – drawing upon its 42-year history, knowledge, and resources – is well positioned to track, analyze, and report on the Pacific Northwest’s important economic, cultural, and educational relationship with China. We hope this report, coupled with other works of the Council, provide key resources for industry leaders, government officials and their staff.
The U.S. China Business Council (USCBC), in coordination with the WSCRC, has interviewed a number of WSCRC member companies to understand the importance of the China market to these firms, as part of its “50 States, 50 Stories” initiative. The fourth of the Washington State story is with Seattle-based GX Architecture & Design Consulting Service, Inc. (GX). In the interview, Bob Ormond, Senior Vice President and COO of the company advised the readers to take the long(er) view when working with the Chinese based on his and his company’s experience working throughout Asia. Mr. Ormond also praised the role of state level U.S.-China trade groups like the WSCRC which helps companies like his with business transactions and policy and strategy advice.
Read the full article “Adding an American Touch to China’s Tech Headquarters“.
The U.S. China Business Council (USCBC), in coordination with the WSCRC, has interviewed a number of WSCRC member companies to understand the importance of the China market to these firms, as part of its “50 States, 50 Stories” initiative. The third of the Washington State story is with the Greater Pacific Industries. In the interview, Ben Zhang, Founder and CEO of the company shared his success stories and the challenges they are facing due to the decline of U.S.-China relationship.
Read the full article “Serial Entrepreneur Says Nobody Wins a Trade War“.
The webinar featured two China experts who provided meaningful insights and candid opinions on the obstacles arising for U.S. companies in China. Shan Huang, deputy managing editor and an editorial board member of Caixin Media, focused on the new buzzwords in China, “common prosperity” and “dual circulation”. He pointed out that these are mere phrases that will take a gradual process to implement. Jacob Wood of GreenPoint Group noted that despite the tense geo-political situation between the U.S. and China, U.S. businesses, especially U.S. multinationals, are still committed to the China market. He believes U.S. businesses will push for further progress in securing trade relations which may help to lessen tensions. Jacob mentioned that there is an “information paradox” as what the U.S. headquarters hear about China in the media is often much different from the reality on the ground in China. The pandemic has heightened this information gap as foreign executives are unable to travel to China and see the situation first hand. It was suggested that successful foreign companies in China have consistently targeted long-term plans that engage all stakeholders. Creating a deep commitment to understanding China and adapting to the Chinese market is the key to facing China’s new obstacles.
When posed the question whether trade relations will get better or worse in the upcoming year, the unanimous answer was that it will continue to be rocky, however there is desire and incentive from both sides to move forward and to quell the tension. Awaiting more information and clarity from the White House regarding China policy, the advice for companies is to diversify suppliers and contractors but hold steady in China for the immediate future. Shan Huang states that if we can look beyond the next 12 months and into the future, China will still be the “workshop of the world” and also a huge market for foreign companies.
The WSCRC congratulates Nelson Dong, a board member and former Chairman of the Washington State China Relations Council, on being selected by the Puget Sound Business Journal as one of their eight “Directors of Year” for 2021. The board members are recognized for their outstanding contributions to a range of companies and non-profits across the region and beyond.
The PJBJ noted that “these directors have helped navigate their companies through challenging times. They were nominated by their peers as standout board members and leaders and include members of corporate and nonprofit boards”.
In selecting Nelson as one of the “Directors of the Year”, the paper cited Nelson’s continuing service to the Washington State China Relations Council and in particular his efforts to have the Council adjust and adapt with the onset of the pandemic. Nelson has been instrumental in the Council’s move to producing well-recognized webinars on China related topics that impact our community from the introduction of the new national security law in Hong Kong to the rise of Asia Hate Crimes in the Puget Sound Region. Nelson, in his role a member of the Council’s Executive Committee and Government Affairs Committee has helped to raise the profile of the Council and increase its influence.