11 May 2012
Honourable Minister for National Development and Board Advisor of Business China, Mr Khaw Boon Wan
Minister of State for Finance & Transport and Board Member of Business China, Mrs Josephine Teo
NTU’s Vice President (International Affairs), Prof Er Meng Hwa
Board members of Business China
Lecturers of the Advanced Leaders Programme
Distinguished guests from the business and public sectors
Ladies and gentlemen,
1. On behalf of Business China, I would like to extend our utmost gratitude to Minister Khaw Boon Wan for the support, taking time off his busy schedule to grace the Commencement Ceremony of the Inaugural Future China Advanced Leaders Programme. I would also like to congratulate the 24 participants for the successful completion of the course.
2. This year, to mark our fifth anniversary, Business China has collaborated with Nanyang Business School for the first time, to jointly conduct this short-term Future China Advanced Leaders Programme. Through this unique programme, we hope to assist Singapore’s private and public sectors in grooming “China-ready”, “China-savvy” and “China-connected” senior executives who are overseeing China operations.
3. Although a three-week programme may seem short to some but the content is rich and diversified. The curriculum incorporates both business and cultural elements to ensure that the participants’ practical needs are met. I believe after going through the three segments, they have obtained a comprehensive understanding on the Chinese culture and business landscape, as well as forged new friendships with like-minded friends and mentors.
4. In both first and third segments conducted in Singapore, the participants have learnt a lot about China from renowned academics and experts including Business China’s Board of Directors. In the second segment, all participants embarked on a field trip to China, establishing networks with key Chinese business leaders and government officials, visiting the Confucius Temple and Mansion, appreciating Kun opera, etc. I believe these experiential components not only enhanced their cultural appreciation but also enabled them to gain many insights on the emerging China, in order to seize the vast opportunities available.
5. Whilst the centre of global economic gravity is shifting to the East, China is expanding its influence across the globe. Any changes in the country will have a great impact on the world. Therefore, Singapore needs to keep pace with China’s latest developments so that we will always remain competitive in the global world.
6. Since its inception, Business China has strived to be the leading channel to deepen our member segments’ understanding of China’s economic, social and cultural paradigms through a wide range of programmes. We hope these programmes will help them to be more nimble in dealing with the East and the West, as well as contribute significantly to strengthening of the Singapore-China relations.
7. Last but not least, I would like to thank IE Singapore and SPRING Singapore for their tremendous support to ensure the successful implementation of this programme. I wish all of you every success in your China venture and may you all achieve new heights in your career.