Premier Li Keqiang arrived at Greece on 16 June
to open up European trading market, to promote Sino-Greece relation and to boost Sino-Europe win-win cooperation.
Part One: General Information of Visit
On 5-15 August 2014, Shing Kee Godown Group participated in the “Greece International Commercial Cooperation Event Series” organized by the Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications (BOD) and the EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs for “World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City”. This is the second visit of Shing Kee Godown delegation to Greece subsequent to the execution of the international cooperation agreement between Shing Kee Godown and the Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications on 28 April, 2014. The purpose of this event series is designed to recommend “World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City” to the political, industrial and commercial circles of Greece, and to introduce the green and organic agricultural products and industrial products of Greece into China to pave the way for the materialization of Sino-Greece commercial cooperation.
Greece is located in the south part of Balkan Peninsula in southeast Europe, sharing its terrestrial border with Bulgaria, Macedonia and Albania on the north, and Turkey on the east. The country is on the coast of Aegean Sea. On the west and south of it, lie the Ionia Sea and Mediterranean Sea. Greece boasts the origin of western civilization, and a strong influence upon the three major continents’ history. Serving as a gate to European markets, Greece has a critical geographical position and affluent natural resources, daily chemical commodities and green agricultural products. Greece was afflicted by debt crisis as from 2009, and in December 2012, the Standard & Poor raised Greece’s long-term sovereign credit rating from “selective default” to “B-” which indicates reliable prospect. This means S&P accepts that Greece is gradually resuming its stability getting away from the verge of bankruptcy.
China has a considerable history of agriculture, and has plenty of human resources, as well as a wide range of consumption and services. China is advantageous in developing world-wide commerce and trade, building world-wide commodity market and creating innovative global models for commerce. The advantages lie in China’s human resources and potential of consumption per capita. We pay this visit in order to provide a commercial platform to let Greek entrepreneurs, traders, commodities, products and brands into Chinese market. Greek political circle, traders, industries, key organizations and media attached high importance to this visit which opens up new opportunities for the development of Sino-Greece trade.
Chinese delegation for the Greece International Commercial Cooperation Event Series includes 5 policy makers from Shing Kee Godown headed by the Chairman of Board Guo Taicheng. In order to enhance the Chinese people’s understanding of Greek national culture and to intensify the cultural exchange between China and Greece, the Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications engaged Mr. Li Chenggui, a famous translator of Greek language, to accompany the Chinese delegation throughout the whole visit.
Part Two: Background of Visit
I. Sino-Greece Friendship
1. Premier Li Keqiang said that the opportunities for Sino-Greece cooperation are unique and must not be missed, and he expects the increase of cooperation between both countries with further exploitation of potentialities on both sides.
Xinhua News Agency 21 June: Chinese Premier Li Keqiang paid an official visit to Greece on 19-21 June. During his visit, the Premier has met important members of Greek government and attended the Sino-Greece Maritime Cooperation Forum delivering an important speech. Both countries signed cooperation documents concerning infrastructure construction, maritime, culture and other areas. It is widely believed in the international community that this visit yields rich fruits, and will expand Sino-Greece practical cooperation in various areas and boost the development of Sino-Greece and Sino-Europe relations.
At the opening ceremony of the Herakleion Museum on 21 June, Premier Li Keqiang talked about the potential of Sino-Greece cooperation and he quoted the famous remark of ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus that people cannot step into a same river on two occasions, and also the famous saying of Chinese thinker Confucius that time passes like the river day and night. The Premier said that the opportunities for Sino-Greece cooperation are unique and must not be missed, and he expects the increase of cooperation between both countries with further exploitation of potentialities on both sides.
The Premier’s visit to Greece will enhance the two countries’ rapport and deepen the bilateral economic and commercial cooperation of the two countries. Greece is the cradle of European civilization, and serves as an important bridging for the development of Sino-European relations. A close tie between China and Greece will instill “positive energy” for mutual trust and mutual benefit in Sino-European economical and commercial communication and cooperation.
2. The international community highly praises Premier Li Keqiang’s visit to Greece, “Sino-Greece friendship is initiated with oceans and goes beyond oceans”
After he listened to the speeches at the Sino-Greece Maritime Cooperation Forum, the Greece General Chamber of Commerce president Vassilis Korkidis said that he shares a lot with Premier Li Keqiang on his view about strengthening Sino-Greece Maritime Cooperation, that Greece belongs to both the east and the west, serving as a bridge between the two, and also as an inlet of Chinese products to Europe, and that development of Sino-Greece tie will benefit the whole Europe.
The president of Esniki Real Estate Company Konstantinos Coniotakis said, “Premier Li Keqiang’s speech released two focual points: first, power of Sino-Greece Friendship and its value for tie between both countries; and second, Chinese heads of state and Chinese people regard us as a key partner for development of their relation with Europe. Just as what Premier Li said, Sino-Greek friendship is initiated with oceans and goes beyond oceans.”
Vice Director of Greece Marine Research Centre Vasilios Ruksith said, “Premier Li Keqiang’s speech at the Sino-Greece Maritime Cooperation Forum inspired me. The Blue Growth brings new hope for economical development, and the ocean and development of coastal area’s resources is creating new opportunities of employment. Greece and China have potential to cooperate in blue growth. We should strengthen our two countries’ partnership in the areas of maritime research, ocean shipping, technology and innovation, among others.”
The Europe Times of France reported that deep-set wisdom features the “close contact” of China and Greece, which is very meaningful for the bilateral relation of both countries and the Sino-Europe relation. Premier Li Keqiang delivered an important speech at the Sino-Greece Maritime Cooperation Forum to comprehensively reveal to the western society China’s “view of ocean” – “working together for an ocean of peace, cooperation and harmony” so that westerners understand China better.
France Press Agency (AFP) reported that Greece, afflicted by sovereign debt crisis, expects investments from China, and hopes China to help in its economic recovery. The visit of Premier Li Keqiang indicates the resumption of China’s interest in investment in Greece, and that Greece may become a gateway for China in Europe and the starting point of European trade corridor while Greece seeks to enhance the Sino-European tie.
Germany Press Agency (DPA) reported that China hopes to enhance its bilateral trade and investment partnership with Greece through Premier Li Keqiang’s visit to Greece. China attempts to increase its investment in EU, and Greece is regarded as the entry point of this strategy. And in the view of Greece Prime Minister Antonis Samaras, a closer tie between China and Europe not only benefits Greece, but also is salutary to Europe.
The BBC reported that China and Greece have signed agreements on commerce and investment involving 4.6 billion USD covering renewable sources of energy and shipping. At the press conference hosted by Chinese Premier and Greek Prime Minister, the Prime Minister Samaras expressed that Greece and China are always trusting and supporting each other.
II. Situations of China and Greece
1. Greece is getting out of the economic crisis, and Greece is a gateway to European market.
Greece is one of the less developed countries in European Union with relatively weak economic foundation and with its industrial manufacturing falling behind. Greece has full-fledged ocean shipping, listed along with tourism and overseas remittance as one of the three mainstays of Greece’s foreign exchange sources. The agriculture of Greece is developed, and the country’s industry focuses on food processing and light industry. In recent years, Greek government proactively carried out economic and social welfare reforms, and encouraged foreign investments, resulted in good effect to some extent. As from the end of 2009, the country was trapped in sovereign debt crisis. Hence Greece’s substantial economy and banking system underwent a hard time, but the situation is getting better. Greece has made remarkable headway in solving its economic problems, and its competitiveness has been raised significantly.
Greece is located in the east Mediterranean region, enjoying a very advantageous geographical position as the gateway to Europe. Greece used to be a developed country. It has fully modernized airports, ports and roadways, and can actually provide China with a market pipeline toward EU – generally speaking, it can provide everything that enables China’s entrance into European market. Greece is gradually getting out of its economic predicament. The rapport of China and Greece is reaching a unprecedented peak especially after the visits of President Xi Jinping and Premier Li Keqiang, and a new approach is opened up for both countries’ cooperation. As a key station on the New Silk Road, Greece is described by Premier Li Keqiang as China’s gateway to Europe.
World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City is a big global market platform matching the 1.3 billion Chinese population’s consumptive power. So Greece is not only China’s gateway to Europe, but also the entrance into Europe for World Commerce Valley.
2. China has emerged as the world 2nd largest economy, and is speeding up its transformation from a major trading nation into a major trading power.
China, through 30 years reform and opening, established its position as the 2nd largest economy of the world. China has built its coastal special zones, urban agglomerations and financial reform demonstration areas; and carried out the projects of new-type urbanization, city infrastructure development, construction of arteries for circulation, and land transportation of passengers and freight. China has transformed from an agricultural country into an economic power, and is speeding up its transformation from a major trading country into a major trading power. Then China needs to construct a big global industrial market platform.
With the 18th CPC (Communist Party of China) National Congress successfully held, President Xi Jinping pointed out that we are close to the objective of the great rejuvenation of Chinese nation, closer than in any other periods in history. We are more confident and capable in realizing this objective than in any other periods in history. To recreate the millennial splendor of the New Silk Road, and to rejuvenate China is our Chinese Dream for the new historical period. The Dream involves the ancient China’s glory in thousands of years; and the Road involves the Silk Road opened by our ancestors.
Today’s China should firmly take the route of marketization of a big country’s capital economy, and develop China’s big market for international industries. World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City comes into existence as the situation requires. World Commerce Valley -China Yanjiao Logistics City takes on its mission of the times. It is designed to develop the big market of domestic commodities, to create a big global industrial platform, to lower the general cost of domestic logistics, and to make a new model of Chinese commerce.
III. Sino-Greece Cooperation Progress Concerning “World Commerce Valley”
1. The “World Commerce Valley” Sino-Greece International Strategic Cooperation Framework was signed on 28 April.
Jointly invited by the Credit Rating and Certification Centre affiliated to the Institute of China Ministry of Commerce, and by China International Investment Promotion Centre affiliated the Investment Promotion Administration under China Ministry of Commerce, Shing Kee Godown participated in the 2014 Sino-Greece Economic & Trading Forum and the Investment & Trade Promotion Events, and carried out business consultations, visits and observations in Greece, France and Italy from 4 April to 5 May. During the events, at the 3rd session Sino-Greece Economic & Trading Investment Forum and Enterprise Negotiation Meeting held on 28 April, Shing Kee Godown and Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications signed the Agreement on World Commerce Valley & Sino-Greece Strategic Cooperation. On 29 April, president of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications, Ms. Nicoletta Kaperoni arranged a special conference for introduction and presentation of Greek commodities for their entrance into World Commerce Valley & China Yanjiao Logistics City.
2. On 20 May, president of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications, Ms. Nicoletta Kaperoni made a reciprocal visit to Shing Kee Godown’s “World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City”.
After Shing Kee Godown’s delegation returned from Greece in April, the Greek partner kept close contact with Shing Kee Godown. On 20 May 2014, the group of 5 including president of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications Ms. Nicoletta Kaperoni, president of Beijing Guojing Import and Export Co., Ltd. Liu Xiaodong, Director General of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications Li Chenggui visited “World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City” for observation and negotiation in order to thoroughly implement the trilateral strategic cooperation agreement, and they made particular consultations about the establishment of Greek Hall in China Yanjiao Logistics City.
Part Three: Itinerary and Details of Visit
I. Time of Visit
5-15 August 2014
II. Destinations of Visit
Athens and Crete Island, Greece
III. Theme of Visit
Greece international commercial cooperation events series
Advisory organization: China Centre for International Economic Exchange
Sponsoring organization: Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications
Co-Sponsoring organization: EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs
1. To visit president and secretary general of Greece General Chamber of Commerce
2. To visit Minister of Development, Greece
3. To visit Minister of Agriculture, Greece
4. To visit president of Chamber of Commerce & Industry Mr. Korkidis
5. To visit president of Hellenic Chamber of Commerce and president of Trade Union
6. To visit member(s) of parliament, Greece
7. To visit governor of Crete Island Region, governor of Rethimnon District, mayor of Rethimnon Municipality, and leadership of the municipal governments
8. To visit governor of Iraklion District
9. To have meeting(s) with selected companies of Greece
Part Four: Greece International Commercial Cooperation Events Series
I. Shing Kee Godown Delegation Visits Greece General Chamber of Commerce
On the morning of 6 August 2014, the delegation headed by Shing Kee Godown Chair of Board Guo Taicheng visited the Greece General Chamber of Commerce under the arrangement of the EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs and the Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economic, Commercial and Cultural Communications. The president of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Constantine Michalos, the secretary general of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Panagiotis Agniadis attended the meeting thereof.
President of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Constantine Michalos made his address
President of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Constantine Michalos said, “Sino-Greece relation is becoming increasingly close, and is not limited to political and economical partnerships. At present, the economy of Greece and EU is in hard times, and Greece urgently needs a consumption market like China that has a population of over 1 billion for selling and promotion of Greek products. We also believe World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City will actually introduce Greek products into China in a comprehensive way, and will help us open up Chinese market.” And he said, “Greece General Chamber of Commerce has over 80,000 enterprise members altogether, and the Chamber and the entrepreneur members are looking forward to you and are thankful to you for your provision of such a market platform. I believe all our members will successfully take their commodities to Chinese market through your platform.” The president of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Constantine Michalos proposed that both sides sign the cooperation agreement on an appropriate date in order to speed up and carry out the cooperation so that all the members are introduced into China.
Secretary General of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Panagiotis Agniadis addressed the meeting.
Secretary General of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Panagiotis Agniadis thanked the delegation led by Chairman Guo for their visit to Greece. He said, “The peoples of both countries have a lot of common grounds. Both countries are the origins of the European and Asian civilizations. What we share will boost our well-organized thorough cooperation. First, we are able to cooperate in terms of cultural tradition promoting each other’s civilization. The second point of our cooperation lies in the communication of entrepreneurs and exchanges of commodities. Greece’s products are popular throughout the world, so we have great potential in our products to be sold in Chinese market. First of all, we regard you as our good friends from China. I believe that with your help, our cooperation will be fruitful, and will bring a fascinating prospect for Greece.”
Chair of board of Shing Kee Godown Guo Taicheng said enthusiastically, “Both Greece and China are countries of venerable ancient civilizations. Greece is a western developed country, and China, on its 65th anniversary, has just launched its development of market. China has a purchasing power of population of 1.3 billion, and Greece has fine products as a western country. So cooperation between Greece and China is promising, and also has a profound cultural background. Strong synergy will result from the two countries’ cooperation. Greece, as the gateway to Europe market, is the first station of World Commerce Valley. China is just starting up its opening of market. China was a major manufacturing country exporting labor for the most part, and now we have an optimal opportunity for creating a trading market platform with World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City.” He also expressed his agreement with the proposal of president of Greece General Chamber of Commerce Constantine Michalos for the strategic cooperation. Chairman Guo said, “Our World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City is an international commodity transit point representing China; and Greece may become a transit point of Europe delivering the products from Greece and Balkan region and even the whole Europe to China. Our Shing Kee Godown Group will work for creating a good platform. For our collaboration, we will be responsible for the Greek product promotion platform and the marketing; and the General Chamber of Commerce may organize the entrance of European products into Chinese market. Thus a multi-win result may come out.”
President of EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs Ms. Sophia Economakos made an enthusiastic speech.
President of EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs Ms. Sophia Economakos said, “Greece is the first station for entering Europe, and is the best partner of cooperation for China. The time being witnesses the optimal opportunity for both countries’ economic development.”
After the conference, both parties exchanged their gifts, and Shing Kee Godown delegation cordially invited the General Chamber of Commerce to pay a reciprocal visit to World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City.
Shing Kee Godown and Greece General Chamber of Commerce exchanged their gifts to each other.
Group photo of gift exchanging
II. Shing Kee Godown Delegation Visited Hellenic Minister of Agriculture
On the morning of 7 August 2014, the delegation of 5 members including Shing Kee Godown Chair of Board Guo Taicheng and Vice Director of Project of International Economy Consultation Co., Ltd. of China Centre for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE) visited the Hellenic Ministry of Agriculture under the arrangement of the EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs and Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications. The Hellenic Minister of Agriculture Karasmanis attended the meeting thereof.
The Hellenic Minister of Agriculture Karasmanis made his speech.
The Hellenic Minister of Agriculture Karasmanis said, “Our partnership is based on our traditional friendship and development. I myself pay special attention to the development of Hellenic-Chinese business tie. I believe every step of our cooperation will push forward the trading tie between both countries, especially in the aspect of agriculture.” He said, “Hellenic Ministry of Agriculture is the key section for exporting Greek products to China, in particular, safe foods and organic foods that are tested and accredited with guaranteed quality. These foods accredited by EU have good prospect. We believe that enhancing the export of Greece’s reputational products to China is, on one hand, beneficial to Greek agricultural product suppliers, and on the other hand, salutary to Chinese consumers. Thus Chinese consumers may have fresh agricultural products of high quality.” He also said, “two months ago, I met Chinese Minister of Agriculture who signed with me two important contracts. The first is for exporting to China tested and qualified low-fat meat products; and the second is for exporting to China household products made of sheep, goat and cattle leathers. We have also executed with Chinese Ministry of Agriculture some other contracts similar to these. Therefore, I think today’s meeting means a further step forward. I will thank you for your request for this meeting. I also thank you for your visit, and again, I would like to say that you are welcome here.”
The representative of China Centre for International Economic Exchanges (CCIEE) Xu Ya said, “China Centre for International Economic Exchanges, as a new type national think tank, was established in 2009, with the former vice premier of China State Council Zeng Peiyan acting as the director-general. The main function of CCIEE is to carry out and organize research on major international and domestic economic issues, to conduct international exchange and cooperation in a wide range, to provide intellectual support for government agencies, and to provide economic exchange platforms for enterprises and other sectors of the society. CCIEE commits itself to support and guide Chinese enterprises to get global, and to promote superior technologies and products from foreign countries, and to promote cooperation between Chinese and foreign enterprises. World Commerce Valley is a project we highly regard, and is a key project as a response to Chinese national strategies. This project will generate far-reaching influence upon our policies in regard to economy, trade and finance.”
Shing Kee Godown Chair of Board Mr. Guo Taicheng expressed his thanks to Hellenic Minister of Agriculture for his allowance of time for this meeting. Mr. Guo said, “The cooperation between China and Greece is to utilize both parties’ advantages. China has purchasing power of a population of 1.3 billion, and Greece has security, peace and advanced technologies, and serves as the bridgehead for reaching Europe. Greece is China’s friend. Your Excellency has signed contracts with Chinese Minister of Agriculture, and we are going to provide a substantial market platform for the settlement of Greek products. P.R. China has been established for 65 years, and the time being is just for China to startup of market development. China has never been opening its market before, and a number of Chinese citizens used to purchase foreign products while touring abroad, which may affect foreign countries’ taxation administration. At present, our World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City serves as a big market platform for synergetic effect resulted from interactions of Chinese market and markets of the other parts of the world.” He also said, “ World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City is a key project responding to the national strategies, and has been pushed into the startup phase in which the policy designing and recruitment from markets around the globe are to be fulfilled. On 17 January this year, CCIEE solicited consuls and ambassadors from over 170 countries to support our recruitment efforts, and up to now we have launched substantive negotiations with Canada, the USA, Japan, Korea, Poland, Russia, in addition to Greece, which brought about the best outcome.”
The Hellenic Minister of Agriculture Karamanis expressed his excitement saying “We have a great friend. It’s China. I expect you to fulfill this project as soon as possible. Then I will be the first to go there.”
After the meeting, Shing Kee Godown and Hellenic Minister of Agriculture exchanged their gifts to each other.
Shing Kee Godown and Hellenic Minister of Agriculture exchanged their gifts to each other.
III. Shing Kee Godown delegation visited president of Peiraias Chamber of Commerce & Industry and representatives of local entrepreneurs
On the afternoon of 7 August 2014, the group of 5 including Chairman of Shing Kee Godown Guo Taicheng and representative of CCIEE Xu Ya visited the president of Peiraias Chamber of Commerce & Industry and representatives of the local entrepreneurs under the arrangement of the EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs and Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications. The president Korkidis, vice president Mathios and supervisor Manesiotis of Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry, as well as representatives of Hellenic enterprises attended the meeting.
Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry president Korkidis thanked the president of EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs Ms. Sophia Economakos and the president of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications Ms. Nikoletta Kaperoni and described them as “the genuine ambassadors for Chinese and Hellenic entrepreneurs”, and expressed his warm welcome to the delegation from Shing Kee Godown and CCIEE who come via the bridging of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications and EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs.
He said, “We are to transfer superior products to Chinese market, and we are looking forward to Chinese market in that up to now, Greece’s value of export to China is less than 400 million, while China’s value of export to Greece is over 2.2 billion, excluding tax revenue. So there is a problem of trade deficit for us. This is understandable because China’s population is much larger than that of Greece.” He also said, “Greece has a lot of high-quality products which can certainly be exported to China. We have great potential.” Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry president Korkidis said that he is not only the vice president of Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry, but also the president of Adhika Industries Association which represents 50% of all industrial enterprises of Greece. Greek medium and small-sized enterprises urgently need to find cooperation partners in China, and are eager to enter Chinese market through the platform of Valley of Commerce of the World.
Vice Project Director of CCIEE Xu Ya made her speech
Representative of CCIEE Xu Ya said, “China Centre for International Economic Exchanges is a new type national think tank. The main function of CCIEE is to carry out and organize research on major international and domestic economic issues, to conduct international exchange and cooperation in a wide range, to provide intellectual support for government agencies, and to provide economic exchange platform for enterprises and other sectors of the society. CCIEE commits itself to support and guide Chinese enterprises to get global, and to promote superior technologies and products from foreign countries, and to promote cooperation between Chinese and foreign enterprises. World Commerce Valley is a project we highly regard. This project boasts strong geographic advantages and is covered by the national key economic strategy described as ‘integration of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei’; at the same time, the project takes the idea of free trade zone as reference and has a pilot value in terms of logistics and commerce.”
President of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications Nikoletta Kaperoni made her speech.
President of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications Nikoletta Kaperoni said, “Since I got to know the chairman of Shing Kee Godown Guo Taicheng, we have cooperated with each other smoothly. Shing Kee Godown is a reliable Chinese partner of Greek people. World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City opens a new approach and provides a platform for all commodities and products of Greece and even for all associations and organizations of Greek small enterprises, medium or large purchasers, agents and manufacturers to enter Chinese market.
World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City caters not only to Chinese market, but also to the Asian market.”
Shing Kee Godown Group Chair of Board Guo Taicheng made his speech.
Shing Kee Godown Group Chair of Board Guo Taicheng sincerely extended his thanks to Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry president Korkidis for his allowance of time for the meeting and arrangement of Greek enterprises to attend this meeting. He said, “China is the world second largest economy, the largest manufacturing country and the largest import and export country. Through its cooperation and communications with the other parts of the world especially with more developing countries and more western countries, China is bound to create a new situation of the success of China and the success of the neighbouring countries. With its recovered prosperity, the Silk Road, a sole and unique economic corridor of the world, will certainly witness China’s rise again. World Commerce Valley is China’s national key project of market reform, and will be a key project supported by the new administration of China. Backed with purchasing power of 1.3 billion Chinese population, World Commerce Valley is a market platform for the world’s commodities to enter China. In particular, World Commerce Valley welcomes Greece’s commodities, products, entrepreneurs and businesses enter into Chinese market.
After the speeches, the Shing Kee Godown and Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry exchanged their gifts to each other.
Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry president Korkidis said that he hopes to sign a cooperation agreement with Shing Kee Godown’s World Commerce Valley & China Yanjiao Logistics City as soon as possible to push the particular efforts.
Shing Kee Godown exchanged its gift with Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
After the meeting, Hellenic Chamber of Commerce & Industry president Korkidis invited the delegation to have afternoon tea in the garden at the top of the office building to continue their amicable talks.
IV. Shing Kee Godown Delegation Visited the Government of Rethimnon, Crete Island
On the afternoon of 11 August 2014, the group of 5 including Chairman of Shing Kee Godown Guo Taicheng and vice director of CCIEE Xu Ya visited the government of Rethimnon District of Crete Island under the arrangement of Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications and EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs. The governor of Crete Region, the governor of Rethimnon District, the member(s) of Greek parliament, the mayor of Rethimon municipality and other local municipal leading officials attended the meeting thereof.
Vice mayor of Rethimnon Municipality Konstantinos E Iliakis made his speech.
Vice mayor of Rethimnon city Mr. Konstantinos E Iliakis thanked the organizers of this event – EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs Ms. Sophia Economakos and Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications Ms. Nikoletta Kaperoni. He said sincerely, “It’s you who act as the bridge for China-Greece rapport, and invited our Chinese friend Shing Kee Godown to Greece and to Crete enabling commodities and enterprises of Crete Island to go abroad.” He also expressed his warm welcome toward the delegation of Shing Kee Godown headed by Chairman Guo Taicheng.
EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs president Ms. Sophia Economakos made her speech.
EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs president Ms. Sophia Economakos extended her thanks to the municipal authority for their thoughtful hospitality, and introduced the present Chinese delegation members and the officials of Rethimnon side.
Vice Chairman of Crete Commercial and Industrial Administration delivered a speech.
Vice Chairman of Crete Commercial and Industrial Administration said, “Sino-Greece friendship and intercourse is deep-rooted. This is the best time for development of the tie between the two countries. On 2 August, the warship sent by Greece government carried Chinese citizens safely out of Lybia to Athens, Greece and then to China; not long ago, Premier Li Keqiang and President Xi Jinping visited Greece and strongly pushed forward the development of Sino-Greece comprehensive strategic partnership. Today, delegation of Shing Kee Godown from China visits us and furthers the cooperation between both sides.”
Vice governor of Rethimnon Region Maria Leoni said in her speech, “Crete Island is the largest island in Greece covering an area of 8,300 square metres, under the jurisdiction of Crete Region. The island is a crown in the most southerly part of Aegean Sea, and is the origin of many of the Greek myths. It has sophisticated design and fabrication of stone carving, gold and silver products, jewels and pottery, as well as frequent marine trade. The island is abundant in olea europea (olive), olive oil, grapes, citruses and beans, most of which are delivered to the mainland of Greece. Industries of Crete are mainly food processing, building material, pottery, textile, soap, leather and steel tools, among others. The high-quality products of these industries are bound to be popular in Chinese market.”
Greece parliament member Yannis Kefaloyannis said in his speech, “On 16 July, I went to China with Chinese Ambassador to Greece Zou Xiaoli. Through this visit, I understood the situation of China’s comprehensive deepening of reform and expansion of opening up. As an emerging big country, China is playing increasingly important role in the international arena. To continuously enhance Hellenic-Chinese friendship and amplify the two countries’ mutually beneficial cooperation is the common understanding of all political parties in Greece. We would like to take the opportunity of this visit to make our due contributions to the development of the tie between both countries and to the enhancement of the economical and commercial cooperation and communications between the two countries.”
The CCIEE representative Xu Ya said in her speech, “China Centre for International Economic Exchanges is a new type national think tank. The main function of CCIEE is to carry out and organize research on major international and domestic economic issues, to conduct international exchange and cooperation in a wide range, to provide intellectual support for government agencies, and to provide economic exchange platform for enterprises and other sectors of the society. CCIEE commits itself to support and guide Chinese enterprises to get global, and to promote superior technologies and products from foreign countries, and to promote cooperation between Chinese and foreign enterprises. World Commerce Valley is a project we highly regard. For this visit to Greece, I am the escort of Chairman Guo of Shing Kee Godown Group, which is very important for World Commerce Valley in Yanjiao. First, this is a key project emerged as a response to the policy of integrated development of Beijing, Tianjin and Hebei that was put forth by President Xi. The project is located at the third pole of China’s economic growth. World Commerce Valley will implement the policies for free trade zones, and will become an example for our opening up and solicitation of business worldwide. We CCIEE and Shing Kee Godown will work together to promote the development of World Commerce Valley, and will provide all favourable conditions that we can create for our friends from various countries. Friends from Greece, and in particular, from Crete are welcome in China and in World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City.”
Chair of board of Shing Kee Godown Guo Taicheng thanked the governor, the mayor and the parliament member(s) of Crete Region for their high level reception. He said sincerely, “Greece has created a civilization for human, and the sunshine, seawater, the olive oil, vines and many other fine agricultural products here appeal to us. I come here personally seeing the beautiful Crete Island, and experiencing the kindness and hospitality of Crete. World Commerce Valley is China’s national key project for market reform, and will be a focus of attention of the new administration of China. It is the purchasing power of the 1.3 billion Chinese people that supports this commercial platform. World Commerce Valley is a platform for the products from all over the world to enter Chinese market. World Commerce Valley welcomes products of Greece and of Crete. I hope both countries’ commercial and political circles create a miracle of economy. With due sincerity, I invite the mayor, the governor and other friends from Crete to come to exhibit your fine products in China, and present your civilization, kindness and your Crete customs and folklore. World Commerce Valley will provide an easy environment for you, and will provide a full set of services for the entrance of your products into China. Both Chinese and Greek peoples, let’s make our contributions to both countries’ economic development.”
After the meeting, Shing Kee Godown delegation and the Crete government leaders exchanged their gifts to each other.
V. Shing Kee Godown Delegation Visited and Observed Rethimnon Trading Market
On afternoon of 9 August 2014, the group of 5 including Shing Kee Godown chair of board Guo Taicheng and CCIEE representative Xu Ya, and the officials of EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs and Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications, accompanied by the mayor of Rethimnon of Crete and the local entrepreneurs representatives, visited and observed the trading markets of Rethimnon.
Rethimnon is a city in the north of Crete Island, Greece. It is on the coast of Aegean Sea, and is a port in Almiro Bay. It was a fortress of sea in Middle Ages, and is a renowned cultural relics. It is also a distributing centre of wheat, apricots, olive oil, handicrafts and metal products. The strong white wines produced in Rethimnon are well-known.
IV. Shing Kee Godown Delegation Visited Iraklion Government, Crete Island
On the afternoon of 11 August 2014, the group of 5 including Shing Kee Godown chairman of board Guo Taicheng and the vice director of project Xu Ya from China International Economic Consultation Co., Ltd. of CCIEE visited the government of Iraklion Region, Crete of Greece under the arrangement of EU Association of Woman Entrepreneurs and Hellenic-Chinese Union for Economical, Commercial and Cultural Communications. The governor of Iraklion Region was present at the meeting thereof.
The governor of Iraklion Region said, “Iraklion is the largest city in Crete Island, and is the capital city of Crete Region and Iraklion State. The city serves as an important port for ocean shipping and also a ferry pier. People may take the ferry from here to Thira Island, Rhodes Island, Egypt, Haifa and the Greece mainland. There are also the Iraklion International Airport and Greece Air Force Base here. Besides olive cultivation and developed fishing industry, the city abounds in fine dye materials such as purpura, Persian berries, etc. Iraklion is the most developed and prosperous city in Crete Island, and has plenty of resources of commodities, products and entrepreneurs. At present, we have an unprecedented close Sino-Greece cooperation. Last month, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang visited Greece and hence the progress of Sino-Greece cooperation is enhanced.” He also said, “I am eagerly looking forward to cooperating with Shing Kee Godown, and I hope to have commodities of Greece, of Crete and of Iraklion to enter into Chinese market through World Commerce Valley – China Yanjiao Logistics City. I am to keep my incumbency for the coming 5 years, and during my term of office, I will by all means enable the cooperation between us!”
The Shing Kee Godown chair of board Guo Taicheng thanked the governor of Iraklion Region for the meeting. He said with sincerity, “China and Greece, as the outstanding examples of oriental and occidental civilizations, shone with glory like twins in the history. There are many common grounds in terms of concept of civilization. In particular, both countries love, value and maintain peace. On its 65th anniversary, the P.R. China has just launched its opening up of market. China has purchasing power of a population of 1.3 billion. Greece is the first station for the opening up of our World Commerce Valley. World Commerce Valley, standing for China’s opening up and China itself, is a transit station of products from around the globe. Crete Island has high-quality products, commodities and kind and honest businessmen for whom we commit ourselves to create a good platform!” Chairman Guo Taicheng sincerely invited the governor to come to visit China at his convenience.
After the meeting, Shing Kee Godown Group and Crete Government exchanged their gifts to each other.
Part 5: Greek Media’s Reports